Attacked by African Mystery Beast

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on March 25th, 2007

Mysterious beast attacks Bangwe woman

A mysterious “animal” with the shape of a dog with two legs and hands with long nails attacked a woman in Bangwe in the early hours of Wednesday.

Speaking at Queen Elizabeth Central Hospital (QECH) where she was receiving treatment, Margret Landani, 31, who seemed to be great pain, said the “animal” hit her hard on her left ribs.

“I felt something scratching my toes at round 2.00 am. I took it lightly because I thought it was a rat. A moment later my blanket was pulled off. I then woke up only to see the whole house in bright light,” recalled Landani, tears registering in her eyes.

When she asked who it was, the “animal” did not answer. She decided to kick the attacker with her leg but “the animal” hit her back on the ribs, causing severe pain that forced her shout for help.

“Immediately after I shouted, I saw what it was…A dog-like animal, with two legs and hands that had very long nails. Its mouth was also long. It had a hairy, big body with a lot of spots.

“With a lot of force and noise it disappeared through my window,” said Landani with difficulties, adding that her door and window had been tightly locked before she slept.

She said doctors told her that she was not badly injured and she would return home yesterday.

Chief hospital administrator for QECH Thom Chisale said they could not divulge information on the woman, saying medical reports are confidential.

Landani said she was with her two children in the house, while her husband, a watchman, was at work. She also claimed that a man and two other children in the area had also been attacked by a similar animal.

Her landlord, a Mrs. Chinguwo, who was woken up by Landani’s shout for help, said the neighbourhood was engulfed in fear following the attack.

“We just heard the shouting. I woke up at 2.05 am. We rushed to see what was happening with her, that is when she narrated the whole story to us. We slept in her house in case the animal returned…In the morning she looked very weak.

“She could not stand on her own thus we decided to take her to hospital by a police vehicle,” said Chinguwo.

Southern Region police deputy spokesperson Norah Mndala said the attack was not related to the notorious Ndirande psychopath.

“The two are not connected. The Bangwe attack was by an animal that is being likened to a cat. This is not the case with the Ndirande attacks. Police are still doing their investigations on the matter,” said Mndala. She said Landani’s case was the first one, from Bangwe, to be reported to the police.Rabecca Theu

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

27 Responses to “Attacked by African Mystery Beast”

  1. elsanto responds:


    Interesting. Could you give us the source for this article? — I’m curious as to which country the “Bangwe” in question is. The location is relevant because this reminds of the mngwa stories, which I believe Huevelmans detailed in his classic… if it weren’t for the spots mentioned in the account, I’d think “Nandi Bear.”

    Could have been a baboon, but the spots are odd. Also interesting is that there is no mention of the size of the “animal” in question…

    Kudos also to Mrs. Landani… if a rat were scratching my toes, I highly doubt I would take it “lightly.”

    Just my two cents.

  2. elsanto responds:

    Craig, nevermind the earlier request. The “Nidrande psychopath” reference was enough for me to figure out that the country is question is Malawi. Malawi is beside Tanazania which is where the stories of Mngwa originated (though at the time it was Tanganyika). The spots and nails are what made me thing of Mngwa… but the “face of a dog” thing throws me off (though one reference likened Mngwa to a civet in coloration… hmmm). The Nandi Bear encounters were also relatively nearby — in Kenya — and only westerners regarded it as a “bear.”

    Could be the reappearance of either of these two long-unheard of cryptids.

    Up to four cents, now.

  3. kittenz responds:

    I think it was probably a spotted hyena. There have been several reported attacks by hyenas within the past few months. The description sounds like a description of a hyena (except for the part about being on two legs, and that could be a misinterpretation of the animal rising up onto its hind legs to attack).

  4. kittenz responds:

    At first I thought “leopard” but why would anybody describe a leopard as having a dog-like face? So I think it was probably a hyena.

  5. joppa responds:

    Wow! I’m more impressed that the woman was not concerned that a rat was scratching her toes. My wife heard a mouse scurry across the floor and called in air support.

    Hyena imho.

  6. fuzzy responds:


  7. hlw responds:

    With the lack of real information fuzzy makes as much sense as anyone. It scratched her toes then hit her in the ribs, An awfully long reach for a hyena or leopard, remember it didn’t lunge it hit. Did it leave cuts or scratches from these long claws? Did they bleed all night causing her weakness? Can hyenas or leopards rear up on their “feet” to attack? (while appearing to stand at the end of the bed). With a lot of force it disappeared through the window. Did it break through the window or was it fumbling with the lock with its long claws? Which of the animals mentioned can or will break through a window? Were there footprints or pawprints outside? Were there scratches on the door where it skillfully unlocked the door in spite of its long claws?
    What about the house being lit up?

    Fuzzy’s right. It could have been the rare spotted African Werewolf, obviously being dropped off by a UFO. Who says there’s no place in cryptoland for UFO’s?

    The whole things reads like a bad B-movie. Perhaps one of those dreams between waking and sleep, complete with the sheet being snatched.

  8. sausage1 responds:

    Damn! Joppa did my joke!

  9. mystery_man responds:

    Well, I think there are several possible culprits, but one aspect of the case that has me a bit baffled is the way the house is described as lighting up. Not a lot of details about that part of the story, but that doesn’t really fit into a typical animal attack case. there is also a contradiction in this article. The lady described the animal as being like a dog, but at the end it is said that “The Bangwe attack was by an animal that is being likened to a cat.” Say what?

  10. Bob Michaels responds:

    The Unknown animal has some sort of a Toe fetish

  11. swnoel responds:

    Sounds like the ole one eyed, one horned , spotted purple people eater to me. 😉

  12. squatchwatcher responds:

    The Mysterious Midnight Toe Scratcher! Man they must be tough in Africa! If rats are so abundant around the neighborhood as to be taken lightly, I’d be moving. One thing that I don’t understand is the woman says “with alot of noise and force it disappeared through my window.” So how did it get into the house without waking anybody up? I agree that the description sounds like a spotted hyena, although the authorities say that its likened to a cat? Do they have prints or another eyewitness?

  13. Maine Crypto responds:

    I would say werewolf, but the bright light, hmmm…’s a new find! ALIEN WEREWOLFS!!!!!!

  14. crypto_randz responds:

    I’ll say werewolf also.

  15. jayman responds:

    Very strange. The whole house in bright light… alien encounter, “goblin universe”… not crypto.

  16. kittenz responds:

    Both hyenas and leopards are capable of standing up on their back feet. A hyena would be quite a bit taller than a leopard, and from different viewpoints they can look catlike or doglike. Hyenas look taller in front too, and they have a “hairy, big body and a lot of spots”. Either a hyena or a leopard is perfectly able to leap through a window.

    I still think it sounds like a hyena. They are very strong and clever, and there have been several fatal hyena attacks in that very region in the not-too-distant past. I recall reading of a rabid hyena that killed several people in that area and wounded even more. I’m not saying a hyena would be clever enough to unlock a window, but they would be strong enough to jump through one.

    Or maybe someone, knowing of the other animal attacks in the region, acted as a “copycat” and attacked the woman in a way that the attack would be blamed on an animal. If the window was securely locked (and the story does not say whether the animal broke the window when it leapt out) then that is a problem.
    In that part of Africa do people commonly keep their windows closed and locked? The house being lit up could be passed off as someone in the home having left a light on without the woman’s knowledge, but the locked window … I dunno. There used to be people in parts of Africa who dressed in animal skins to carry out criminal activities. Maybe that’s what happened here.

  17. elsanto responds:

    Here’s why I’m not ready to assume hyena or leopard:

    1. Bangwe isn’t an urban centre as we understand urban. Malawi is rich in flora and fauna and the people in Bangwe don’t seemed to be walled away from nature as westerners tend to wall themselves away from it. That being the case, I’m sure that Mrs. Landani knows a hyena from leopard and a hawk from a hernshaw (to steal from the Bard).

    2. Hyenas being opportunistic, I doubt very much that it would have just scratched her toes. I think it’s safe to bet that she would have lost some.

    3. What’s with the pulling of the blanket? That seems odd. A leopard might do that, but she did not identify the critter as a leopard (which, incidentally, is indigenous to Malawi).

    4. The “being hit” thing is odd.

    I agree with kittenz’ suggestion that it may have been an individual dressed in animal skins perpetrating a crime or indulging in some form of bizarre fetishism. Given what the records show with respect to the two cryptids I suggested, it’s unlikely that Mrs. Landani would have escaped without loss of any sort (thinking life and/or limb, here).

    Find a penny pick it up, the rest of the day you’ll have a penny.

  18. 12inchPianist responds:

    I’m gonna have to go with Alien Hyena. What most people don’t realize is, that the Hyenas from Alpha Centauri are more closely related to Earth bats than to Earth hyenas.

  19. Raptorial responds:

    In my opinion, it sounds similar to a baboon. They have been described as having dog-like faces before.

  20. kittenz responds:

    But baboons do not have spots.

  21. Bob K. responds:

    The part of her story about the room she was in being bathed in light leads me to believe that this may have been something paranormal(unless this creature was bioluminescent as well). It had a dogs snout, but it simply scratched her toes and “hit her in the ribs”-a la Joe Frazier. No biting, tearing, clawing reported. A dog like animal with HANDS with long nails? Yeah, either a human dressed up in animal skins as kittenz suggested, or a demonic manifestation of some sort.

  22. MBFH responds:

    Human dressed up as said before by kittenz and Bob K. That would explain the legs and hands and being able to get in and out of the house. Someone trying to scare the poor lady.

  23. squatchwatcher responds:

    Maybe the fabled leopard men of Africa? As for her seeing light, maybe she got cracked on the noggin’, I know when I hit my head hard on something I see bright spots of light. Maybe that’s what she meant.

  24. things-in-the-woods responds:

    I’d just go for baboon. In my opinion that comes closest to the description- they have hands and finger nails, they have dog-like faces, they often rear up bipedally in aggressive encounters. They are also reasonable intelligent and inquisitive animals, whom it is not impossible to imagine investigating protruding toes and snatching at a blanket.

    As Kittenz says, they typically arent ‘spotted’, but given that this woman seems to have awkened to quite a shock, any kind of variagation in coat colouring, or simply patches of dirt could have easily been misinterpreted.

    We should also note that in Malawi, jumping through a window need not mean anything much more than jumping through an unglazed opening perhaps covered with loose plastic sheeting or something similar.

    And ‘man dressed as animal’ wouldn’t be my first guess- i reckon we’ve all been watching too many videos of idiots running around washington state in monkey suits…

  25. Mnynames responds:

    Perhaps Kittenz and Squatchwatcher are referring to the Issawiya? They were men who dressed in leopard skins, used clawed hand weapons, and did have a habit of terrorizing villages and murdering the odd person. Historically, they tended to be the enforcers of tribal law, so technically they weren’t criminals, although since they had a habit of attacking western colonials in their sleep, the results blamed on (Naturally enough) leopards, the Europeans tended to see them as such. Haven’t heard much about them since the 1960’s, and I believe they were mainly in East Africa, but I don’t have my notes on them handy (Just moved), so don’t take that as law…interesting nonetheless.

    I agree that the locals would probably know a Hyaena or Babboon, but never underestimate the stupidity of man- I’ve known people who couldn’t recognize a housecat at 20 paces…

  26. cradossk responds:

    hmm, has anyone thought of the possibility that we might be dealing with an ALIEN WARE-HYENA!? 😛

    Makes sense, doesn’t it?

    in all seriousness though, normal, non alien ware, hyena or a man in a suit with a halogen light would be my best guess.

  27. Krimeg responds:

    A dog-like animal with very long nails. Surely a unknown giant Mustelid, like the one encountered by Major Toulson in 1912 and wrongly referred to as a Nandi bear.

    There was in Africa, during Prehistoric Times, a large Leopard-sized Mustelid after all.

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