Scientists stunned to discover that one mythological animal is perfectly real, and has now been captured on film
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A mysterious animal has been captured on film in China reigniting a discussion about cryptids. Cryptids are mysterious animals often associated with folklore and myth. But in this case, one animal appears to be real.
The mythical horse deer does in fact exist after all.
LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- Cryptozoology is considered a psuedoscioence. Its believers seek evidence of cryptids such as Bigfoot, the Loch Ness Monster, or the Yeti. They may also seek evidence of dragons and other mythical creatures referenced in historical literature. Among zoologists, these people tend to get less respect. Worst of all, they are rarely able to offer scientifically verifiable evidence for their beliefs.
Enter the 'horse deer.' This deer-like species has been reported for centuries as living around a lake in rural, northwestern China. It has been seen so rarely that it has been considered mythological, extinct, or a case of mistaken identity. Yet locals have insisted that the horse deer is an actual animal. The creature looks like a deer with some of the characteristic appearance of a small horse.
It has been more than a decade since a reported sighting has occurred, but now a camera has captured a very clear picture of one such animal.
The animal, also known as the Ebi Lake Red Deer, was filmed by a stationary camera on December 24 near the border with Kazakhstan. The local wetland management bureau captured the footage and released it to state media.
The film footage is perhaps only the second solid verifiable evidence collected about the mysterious creature. In 2004, a specimen was captured and used for DNA analysis. Hair and droppings have reportedly been collected.
The horse deer was confirmed to exist in 2004 when scientists secured DNA from a captured specimen.
The horse deer isn't nearly as exciting as a Bigfoot or a Loch Ness Monster, but it is a case of a cryptid turning out to be real. Locals have reported the existence of the creature for centuries, and only in the past decade or so has science caught up.
The mythical horse deer was captured on film, proving it's real, and still exists.
Does this mean there's new hope for other cryptids? For their believers, sure. For skeptics, probably not. There are certainly many species known to people that remain undescribed by science because of their rarity or remote habitat. But deer are common and come in many varieties. It is easier to comprehend the existence of a rare deer than the existence of a forest-dwelling hominid such as Bigfoot. Hominids are all believed to be extinct.
Scientists have estimated the horse deer population to be about 110 individuals.
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