Kulta

The kulta, also called the kooleen and ipilya is a massive reptile or mammal that allegedly used to inhabit massive swamps and wetlands in the central Northern Territory that went extinct sometime before European arrival in the area. They were by far the largest animals in the area, with a bulky body, a small head, a very long neck and tail, and had four, sturdy legs. Kultas were browsing animals, eating leaves at the top of trees with their long necks. According to various Aboriginal people groups, kultas were once common, but the swamps they inhabited and relied upon dried up, causing their extinction. Kultas, if they ever existed, probably died out roughly 7000 years ago, as that was the period in Australia with maximum rainfall and was just after the end of the ice age, which would ideal conditions for swamps to form.


Although the kulta is often romantically speculated as sauropods who somehow survived the K2 mass extinction, this is extremely unlikely, as we now know, unlike what Victoria era paleontologists believed, that no sauropod dinosaurs were semi-aquatic. It would be near impossible for animals as large and widespread as sauropods would somehow leave no fossil evidence. Other more plausible theories as to the origin of kultas include them simply have never existed, and are just an oddly specific myth. an unknown species of giant snake-necked turtle has also been proposed, which do live in Australia and match the kulta’s description except for the lack of any shell reported and much smaller size. Another similar cryptid, the mokele-mbembe, has been theorized to be some kind of enormous long-necked monitor lizard, which already have surprisingly long necks. The Bundjalung people of northeastern New South Wales have folklore of a similar creature called the dirawong, depicted as a giant long-neck goanna, which they consider a creator god.

A (now inaccurate) painting of swamp-dwelling sauropods by Charles R. Knight

A (now inaccurate) painting of swamp-dwelling sauropods by Charles R. Knight

Was the kulta a giant version of a snake-

Was the kulta a giant version of a snake-