Monday 27 April 2009

The Mongolian Death Worm

A change of cryptid today and one I am not very familiar with: The Mongolian Death Worm

The Death worm is said to live in the southern Gobi desert in Mongolia (Gobi means "very large and dry" ). It is one of the largest deserts in the world and it is not all sand but has areas of bare rock.

The Worm,is known to the nomadic tribesmen as the allghoi khorkhoi or ‘intestine worm’ for its resemblance to a cow’s intestine. It is reported to be red , and has been described as having darker spots or blotches, and its also been said to have spiked projections at both ends. They are supposed to be thick bodied and between 2 and 5 feet long. Western scientists first referred to the Mongolian Death Worm in 1926, although the information had come from the locals, not from their own observation: Reported to be between two and five feet long, the deep-red coloured worm is said to resemble the intestines of a cow and sprays a yellow acidic saliva substance at its victims, who if they’re unlucky enough to be within touching distance also receive an electric shock powerful enough to kill a camel… or them.: “None of those present ever had seen the creature, but they all firmly believed in its existence and described it minutely.” The worm is reported to be able to spray an acid like substance that causes death instantly. It is also claimed that this creature has the ability to kill from a distance with an electrical charge

Czech Explorer Ivan Mackerle also investigated this worm and wrote :
"Sausage-like worm over half a metre (20 inches) long, and thick as a man’s arm, resembling the intestine of cattle. Its tail is short, as [if] it were cut off, but not tapered. It is difficult to tell its head from its tail because it has no visible eyes, nostrils or mouth. Its colour is dark red, like blood or salami… It moves in odd ways – either it rolls around or squirms sideways, sweeping its way about. It lives in desolate sand dunes and in the hot valleys of the Gobi desert with saxaul plants underground. It is possible to see it only during the hottest months of the year, June and July; later it burrows into the sand and sleeps. It gets out on the ground mainly after the rain, when the ground is wet. It is, because it can kill people and animals instantly at a range

There is a fear associated with mentioning the worm’s name so it makes it difficult to do research. The area was under Communist government rule which kept it isolated and also outlawed all searches for it .When Communism collapsed in Mongolia in 1990 this allowed Mackerle the access needed to take an expedition to find the worm. Locals told Mac Kerle a story of a young boy playing outside with a yellow ball. When the boy went inside the worm followed. The boy saw the worm and touched it and he was killed instantly. The boys parents found him dead and a trail in the sand leading away. They knew what had killed him and went off to kill the worm but instead the worm killed them.
They also talked to an old woman named Puret who told them . "I have never personally seen the Allghoi khorkhoi,but I have heard much about it. It is said to move about under the sand, and when it wants to kill someone, it moves half its length out of the sand and starts to inflate. The bubble on its body keeps getting larger and in the end the poison squirts out from it."

Sounds like a nasty creature from a horror movie. There is no evidence other than anecdotal at present but there are still many undiscovered creatures still out there. I think extreme care would be needed to look for this one though!

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