Unknown Primate of South Africa. Etymology: Afrikaans, "water baboon." Variant name: Fudu (Tswana/Bantu). Physical description: Baboonlike animal. Height, 6 feet. Reddish hair. Long, powerful arms.
Behavior: Shy and solitary. Prowls the outskirts of farms, raiding livestock. Strips oranges off the trees.
Habitat: Near water, in caves or behind waterfalls.
Distribution: Northern South Africa. Significant sighting: In 1965, two boys saw the animal on the Leeufontein farm between Koster and Swartruggens, North-West Province, South Africa.
Present status: Rumors about the animal have existed since the 1880s. Possible explanations:
(1) The Chacma baboon (Papio cynocephalus ursinus) is well known in the area but only grows to about 2 feet 6 inches long.
(2) The Samango monkey (Cercopithecus mitis labiatus) is even smaller. However, in at least one instance, a farmer shot and killed a samango, claiming it was a Waterbobbejan.
Source: Sian Hall, "Rumble in the Jungle," Fortean Times, no. 111 (June 1998): 24-27.
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