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Cape Sable Serpent

Cape Sable is the southernmost point of Nova Scotia, with Cape Sable Island located south of it, known for its large wild horse population. The Mi’kmaq tribe had folklore of sea serpents for presumably thousands of years, however, none of these relate to the following reports. The first modern sighting was on July 5th, 1976, when Canadian angler Eisner Penny was fishing on the south side of Cape Sable Island, when he spotted a large creature slowly rising and diving in the water. Eisner initially thought it was a whale, but as it approached his boat, he realized it wasn’t. An animal he was similar with, and saw quite often in his 30 year career. By the time it was near his boat, it was estimated to be 4.5 meters out of the water. He described it as being a dark green color with barnacles on its back. Its neck was two feet thick. He only saw two flippers. Its head was the most bizarre feature however, having tusks and its red eyes were on stalks. A mere three days after this incident, Keith Ross and his 24 year old son, Rodney, were fishing off Pollock’s Ledge when they had an encounter with the Cape Sable Serpent.

Rodney saw some kind of animal stirring in the water and called his dad to help identify it. Keith initially thought it was a sunfish, but as the creature neared the boat, they realized they were mistaken. The creature, which they estimated to be 50 ft long, emerged from the water and they saw it much clearer. It started coming towards the boat, and was only a couple feet behind them. Keith ross said; “It had its mouth wide open and there were two big tusks — I call them tusks — that hung down from its upper jaw. It passed astern of us, so close. And we could see its body, about forty or fifty feet long with grayish, snake-like looking skin, full of lumps or bumps and barnacles. And it appeared to us to have a fish’s tail, an up-and-down tail, not flat like a whale’s… I tell you, nothing like that was ever supposed to be in those waters. I never seen crocodiles other than on television, but its head was sort of like that coming out of the water. Peaked at the top, with a big wide mouth. Its neck was full of things that looked like gigantic barnacles. Its eyes weren’t in sockets, but popped out of the side of its head, and it had two tusks maybe two of three feet long and four inches or so round. It was a frightening thing to see.”

Four days after Keith and Rodney’s encounter, Edgar Nickerson and his 15 year old son, Robert, reported an encounter of the serpent. It was thrashing loudly in the water and described it identically to the first two encounters. After pulling up their fishing gear, they realized it was now right next to the boat. At first, Edgar thought it could have been some kind of whale, so he turned on his sounder, which normally scares off whales, but it didn’t phase the creature. They then sped off. For 21 years, there was no known sightings, until 1997 when two fishermen, Charles Bungay and C. Clark, were fishing when they saw what they thought was a bunch of floating garbage bags. They made their way to the garbage bags to pick them up, but when they got 30 ft from them, they realized it wasn’t garbage bags but some kind of 50 ft long sea serpent. It raised its neck 8 ft out of the water and looked at the two fishermen, then dove back down.

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