Alaskan Mystery Carcass Photo

Posted by: Loren Coleman on August 27th, 2008

Remember the story of the beached mystery animal, posted here before all the Georgia business?

I’ve had the photograph of the Alaskan carcass for a couple weeks. However, I didn’t want to have it get lost in the hoax mania and blackout, so I kept it in reserve until I could post it during a calmer time.

Here it is above. The picture was taken on July 22, 2008. The image was being shared privately, and then forwarded to me after I posted about this on August 8th.

As you will recall, one of the local theories was this might be the qaqrat. The term comes from the Inuit dialect of Cup’ig, Nunivak Island’s native language. It roughly translates as “beast-walrus.”

One person in Mekoryuk – Nunivak Island’s only village – thinks the smooth-skinned corpse might be the beast, the qaqrat, rumored about in local legend.

Others have speculated the body was of a walrus, an elephant seal, a small whale, or a dolphin.

The whereabouts of the carcass, whether any samples were taken, or even if it has been revisited and bones gathered, are all unknowns.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
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.

21 Responses to “Alaskan Mystery Carcass Photo”

  1. MPc responds:

    Its looks not so big,
    Is there any information about the size?
    If not, it could easy be a (part of a) Squid.

  2. mystery_man responds:

    In light of all of the unknowns, I am going to have to go with this being the carcass of a mundane animal for now. The apparent lack of forelimbs, dorsal fin, or tail fluke is odd, but this has been seen in globster reports before and most of those ended up being the carcasses of known animals. Decomposition, scavengers, being partly buried, all of these could contribute to a strange appearance. It is hard to tell without any details, but from what I see, I don’t think there is anything to really single this corpse out as a “beast walrus” rather than just a walrus at this point in time.

  3. Braindead responds:

    I’m having flashbacks to Trunko.

  4. cliffhanger042002 responds:

    Looking at the carcass in the pic and then switching to the linked page and looking at the carcass of the known dead elephant seal, I’m going with elephant seal for now based on the commonalities I see between the two pictures. I’m simply basing that on the pinkish color I see in common. If you look at the linked page at the pics of the elephant seal carcass you’ll notice some pink blotches, and then of course the pink color of the carcass in question. I’m not saying I’m convinced, but based on the evidence presented I’m going to go with elephant seal unless more anatomically detailed pics come to light. You can’t get a perfect sense of size because there is no “scaling” object in the pic, but looking at the surface of the water (waves, ripples, etc. and the rock bank in the background) I can only assume the size is consistent with that of and elephant seal. Then the color during decomp, consider scavengers mutilating the carcass, location, kinda adds up.

  5. planettom responds:

    Ah! I wondered if this one would show up. Glad to see the post and also glad Loren that you received a picture.

    It’s truly hard to tell what this is. However, looking to the left of the “black dot” on the carcass which to me appears to be on the belly, I see what maybe the genital slit of a whale. I’m assuming the left portion of the carcass tapers to a tail and the right side of the carcass remnants of the head.

    Just my two cents.

  6. AlbertaSasquatch responds:

    The right side of the picture looks like a tail fin of a whale to me and the black dot looks like a blowhole, but I am not even close to being a marine biologist so its only a guess.

  7. wdsasquatch responds:

    I didnt think a walrus was that pink.
    I guess it could just be the decomp doin its job.
    It looks like there is a tail on the left to me.
    If thats its head on the right it looks like it has a pretty long neck for a walrus.

  8. mojo responds:

    Looks like a giant chicken tender…ready for the grill!!! 🙂
    Seriously though, it looks mighty squiddish to me.

  9. Gary the Cat responds:

    It looks like a uncooked chicken breast that dropped off someone’s beach BBQ.

  10. Bob K. responds:

    Not enough detail. One would think that if this were something exceptional, more than one photo, and those from various angles and distances, would have been taken.

  11. John L. Johnsen responds:

    Hmmm…I was thinking the black spot looked like a gunshot wound. Nevermind….


  12. Richard888 responds:

    I believe the best fit for this carcass is, ‘stomach of large whale.’ Also, I sense an intention of hoax. A closeup picture of the snake like head would have been within the photographers’ capability and have put all speculation to rest. The fact that they didn’t send us a clear picture has me think that the neck is not a neck but an esophagus or the small intestine…


  13. Andrew Minnesota responds:

    Fantastic I’ve been waiting for this since the original post on this subject. I’m hoping that more information will be obtained and there will be a future post, it’s certainly odd enough. Heck it almost looks like the left side has a mouth and a trunk, a rare Alaskan Sea Elephant? I’m not being serious, I do wish that there was another photo or two showing some other angles.

  14. cryptidsrus responds:

    Looks like a bloated stingray/manta ray. Could be something else. I agree it is indistinct.
    Thanks for bringing this to our attention, Loren.

  15. Dj Plasmic Nebula responds:

    I say it’s a Trunko

  16. DtLW responds:

    I’m new to commenting on the site, though I’ve visited and read from time-to-time.

    I must say I’m not an expert, but something in this photograph does not look kosher to me. The bottom edge of the object does not seem native to the photograph. Something about the line between the bottom edge of the carcass and the sand underneath looks unnatural, especially when combined with the shadowing along the left side and along the far end of the left appendage.

  17. darkshines responds:

    The hole in its “belly” looks like a naval, which indicates to me that it is the decomposing remains of a mammal.

  18. mystery_man responds:

    Darkshines is right, I think. That hole looks like a navel, so while I don’t think we can discern just what animal this was on that alone, at least it might give us a vantage point as to which direction the carcass is lying.

  19. Scott C. responds:

    The Cup’ig Eskimo are not Inuit. They’re Yup’ik.

    There are two major subsets of Eskimo: Inuit and Yup’ik.

    There are, of course, further subdivisions (the Yup’ik peoples include Cup’ig, Yuit, etc. The Inuit peoples include Inupiaq, Inuvialuit, etc.).

  20. Loren Coleman responds:

    Obviously, many of us were educated to understand that “Eskimo” is an unfortunate word that is interchangeable with Inuit. But that does not appear to be the case in this brave new world. Thanks for the update.

    The Yupik or, in the Central Alaskan Yup’ik language, Yup’ik, are a group of indigenous or aboriginal peoples of western, southwestern, and southcentral Alaska and the Russian Far East. They include the Central Alaskan Yup’ik people of the Yukon-Kuskokwim delta, the Kuskokwim River, and coastal Bristol Bay in Alaska; the Alutiiq (or Suqpiaq) of the Alaska Peninsula and coastal and island areas of southcentral Alaska; and the Siberian Yupik of the Russian Far East and St. Lawrence Island in western Alaska. They are Eskimo and are related to the Inuit.

    The Central Alaskan Yup’ik are by far the most numerous group of Yupik. The Central Alaskan Yup’ik who live on Nunivak Island call themselves Cup’ig (plural Cup’it). Those who live in the village of Chevak call themselves Cup’ik (plural Cup’it).

    The Yup’ik people (also Central Alaskan Yup’ik, plural Yupiit), are an Eskimo people of western and southwestern Alaska ranging from southern Norton Sound southwards along the coast of the Bering Sea on the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta (including living on Nelson and Nunivak Islands) and along the northern coast of Bristol Bay as far east as Nushagak Bay and the northern Alaska Peninsula at Naknek River and Egegik Bay.

    They are one of the four Yupik peoples of Alaska and Siberia, closely related to the Alutiiq (Pacific Yupik) of southcentral Alaska, the Siberian Yupik of St. Lawrence Island and Siberia, and the Naukan of Siberia. The Yupiit speak the Central Alaskan Yup’ik language. The people of Nunivak Island, speakers of the Nunivak Island dialect of Central Alaskan Yup’ik, call themselves Cup’ig (plural Cup’it); the people of Hooper Bay and Chevak, speakers of the Hooper Bay-Chevak dialect, call themselves Cup’ik (plural Cup’it).

    Yupiit are the most numerous of the various Alaska Native groups and speak the Central Alaskan Yup’ik language, a member of the Eskimo-Aleut family of languages. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the Yupiit population in the United States numbered over 24,000, of whom over 22,000 lived in Alaska, the vast majority in the seventy or so communities in the traditional Yup’ik territory of western and southwestern Alaska.

  21. flying_eskimo responds:

    it is very interesting how the photo made it this far.
    i am the brother of the photographer that took the photo of this unknown ‘beast’. the reason i’m calling it a ‘beast’ was because it was huge!
    my brother and his wife were using the “little boat” on the east side of Nunivak, when we spotted this huge thing. me my dad and my 2 uncles were in the “big boat” right about 3-4 miles off shore, you can clearly see how huge this thing was.
    the reason why that we didn’t go investigate on shore is because the weather can change in a snap.
    so me my dad and uncles kept on going by. while my brother drove by this thing. they did take 5 photos. but only from the “little boat”
    from the view out at 3 or 4 miles this thing was clearly much bigger than the 14′ foot boat my brother was in.

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