Lizard

Bipedal, reptilian ENTITY of North America.

Variant names: Jabberwok, Reptile man.

Physical description: Humanoid form. Height, 7 feet. Greenish, grayish, or brown color. Scales, sometimes in combination with or confused with hair. Froglike face. Glowing red eyes. Three-fingered hands.

Behavior: Amphibious, by some accounts. Pungent odor.

Tracks: Three-toed, clawed prints 14 inches long, 7 inches wide, and 1 inch deep. Stride, 40 inches.

Habitat: Swamps, rivers.

Distribution: Lake Thetis, British Columbia, Canada; Riverside, California; Dogtown, Indiana; Frederick County, Maryland; Newton, New Jersey; Cincinnati area and Mansfield, Ohio; Scape Ore Swamp, South Carolina.

Significant sightings: At 4:00 AM. on May 25, 1955, Robert Hunnicutt saw three small figures, about 3 feet tall, kneeling by a road in Branch Hill, Ohio. They were grayish, with froglike faces, a bulge on the chest, and slender arms. In July 1955, a civil defense volunteer was driving across the Little Miami River in Love-land, Ohio, when he briefly saw four small figures on the riverbank beneath the bridge. These events have been classed with unidentified flying object (UFO) sightings, though no direct connection was established.

Again in Loveland, Ohio, police officers Ray Shockey and Mark Matthews saw a 4-foot-tall, leathery-skinned biped with a froglike face on Riverside Road on March 3, 1972. It jumped over a guardrail and down an embankment to the Little Miami River. A similar creature was seen on March 17.

On June 29, 1988, seventeen-year-old

296 lizard man

Christopher Davis was changing a flat tire near the Scape Ore Swamp southwest of Bishopville, South Carolina, when he saw a green, 7-foot-tall, scaly creature with red eyes and three fingers. He jumped into his car and sped away, but the creature leaped on top of the vehicle. The report inspired many misidentifications and at least one hoax over the following weeks, but Davis stuck to his story and passed a polygraph test in September. Possible explanations:

(1) Except for its scaly texture and color, Lizard man bears a certain resemblance to Hairy Biped entities and North American Apes .

(2) Lizard man's alien look suggests to some an origin connected to the UFO phenomenon.

(3) Folklore or hoaxes based on the Gillman character from the 1954 movie Creature from the Black Lagoon.

(4) A surviving Coelophysis, a small, meat-eating dinosaur that lived in New Mexico in the Late Triassic, 210 million years ago, suggested by Erik Beckjord. However, this species did not resemble a humanoid (though it was bipedal), and it had an unmistakably long, slender, balancing tail.

(5) Chris Orrick has suggested that the 1972 case involved a misidentified Great gray owl (Strix nebulosa), though southern Ohio is outside its normal range. Sources: Leonard H. Stringfield, Situation

Red: The UFO Siege! (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1977), pp. 87-92; "Loveland Frog Leaps Back," Fortean Times, no. 46 (Spring 1986): 19; "'Lizard Man' Facts," Columbia (S.C.) State, August 15, 1988; Mark Opsasnick and Mark Chorvinsky, "Lizard Man," Strange Magazine, no. 3 (1988): 32-33; Loren Coleman, "Other Lizard People Revisited," Strange Magazine, no. 3 (1988): 34, 36; Paul Sieveking, "Lizard Man," Fortean Times, no. 51 (Winter 1988-1989): 34-37; Loren Coleman, Mothman and Other Curious Encounters (New York: Paraview, 2002), pp. 88-100.

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