Posted by: Loren Coleman on March 6th, 2009
The cryptid being sighted is unlikely to be a quagga.
Apparently while I was in London, quite a bit of dust was kicked up over in Little Hocking, Washington County, Ohio, by the sightings of at least one striped horse-like cryptid.
Now why would I call it a “striped horse-like cryptid,” you might ask? Because that’s what it looks like, of course.
Understandably, the local media talked about sightings of “an escaped zebra” occurring during the last week of February 2009, in Washington and Athens counties, Ohio. But think of it. The animals seen are ethnoknown, look like zebras, but no one knows if they are zebras.
So by definition, they are cryptids and appear to have the shape of horses with stripes on them.
It will be recalled that until they were confirmed and classified, okapis were thought to be some undiscovered new species of Congolese rainforest-dwelling zebra. This is not to say there are okapis running around Ohio, but assumed descriptions do not necessarily match up with all final identifications.
The Washington County Sheriff’s Office was somewhat skeptical of the accounts until a trooper actually spotted “the animal,” and then, according to the media, the “authorities could believe what they were hearing.”
“When people first started calling in, there was some speculation that they may have been intoxicated when they observed these animals, or this zebra, but over the period of the week we’ve learned that there actually is a zebra on the loose,” Sgt. Pat Gherke said.
“No word yet on exactly who the owner is,” mentioned one local paper.
So, right now, the animal is an unidentified cryptid, until it is captured, and definitely verified to be a zebra, quagga, zonkey, or something else.
Let’s just hope it isn’t a white horse painted with stripes so someone could sell “zebra rides”!!
(Photo thanks to Bridle Path.)
As to the 2006 affair….do you remember the Alberta 2006 escapee? Early reports said it was a “quagga” but photos told another story.
Zebastian, the Alberta escapee, was claimed to be a quagga, but he did not exhibit the classic quagga striping, but that of a zebra-horse hybrid.
Click on image for full-size version
Click on image for full-size version
The public domain images shown are an old photograph, directly above, and (at top) a print of the known (extinct) quagga from Africa, along with the new ones sent in of Zebastian.
Thanks to Red Grossinger in Whitehorse, Yukon, for sharing the Zebastian images.
Maybe the Ohio animal was caught during this last week, and I just haven’t been able to find a record of that yet.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.