Known as the Beast of Bodmin, or otherwise known as the Beast of Bodmin Moor, is reported to be a panther-like phantom wild cat inhabiting and terrorizing the Cornwall area of southern England in the early 1990’s. Described as being a large three foot long feline with a tail of eighteen inches, eyes which resemble yellow orbs of light, and foul screams which resemble one hundred times that of a woman. Thought to be a hoax at first, but with detailing reports of common livestock being slain, large cat sightings in the area, and confirmed puma-like prints found in 1997 proved that a sizable feline was indeed active in the area.
With 60 sightings from 1983, experts believed there was a population of big cats in or around the Bodmin Moor surroundings. It wasn’t until the year 1995, when Great Britain’s Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food decided to conduct an official investigation. Released on July 19, their findings concluded that there was very little evidence of felines existing in Britain and that the slain farm animals could have been attacked by local indigenous species. However, on July 24, 1995, less than a week after the UK government report was released, a piece of unexpected evidence was found near the River Fowey on the southern edge of Bodmin moor by a 14-year old boy, Barney Lanyon-Jones. Protruding out of the water, Barney had found large cat skull measuring four inches wide and seven inches long. With the lower jaw missing, the skull possessed two prominent incisors which advocated it was a possibly a leopard. The Lanyon-Jones family then turned the skull over to London’s British Museum of Natural History for verification. The museum’s Assistant Keeper of Zoology, Dr. Ian Bishop, examined the skull and determined it was from a young male leopard. He also found that the feline had not died in Britain and may have been imported into the United Kingdom. Scientists reject claims of a domestic feline because of the required large numbers needed to maintain a breeding population. Also, noting that climate and food supply issues would also hinder the creatures and assure its survival to be unlikely.
However, in November of 1999, an outbreak of animal mutilations of a calf and two sheep were torn apart by an unknown creature which hinted at the fact that there was an undisclosed vicious animal lurking throughout the moor. Famous curators and animal experts believe this animal could be the species which has supposedly gone extinct more than a century ago. Since introduction of Britain’s 1976 Dangerous Wild Animals Act which made ownership of exotic pets illegal, some speculate these sightings and occurrences could be cats which have escaped forcing the owner to hesitate in reporting of these animals due to avoidance of legal trouble as it is common for these animals to evade zoo’s and wildlife parks each year. Similar to Bigfoot, and the Lochness monster, there is way too much evidence to disregard.