For centuries a legend has haunted the Honey
Island Swamp. A legend passed on from generation to generation.
A legend of a huge creature, neither man nor beast, which
lives in the deep cypress shadows of the Louisiana bayou.
A creature that must, by every definition of the word, be
considered a monster.
Less than an hour away from the chaotic heart of New Orleans
lays a primordial backwater morass known as the Honey Island
Swamp. Considered by many naturalists to be one of the most
pristine swampland habitats in the United States, the Honey
Island Swamp covers an area that is over 20 miles long and
nearly 7 miles across, with 34,896 of its 70,000 acres government
sanctioned as permanently protected wildlife area.
Known primarily for its catfish, snakes and alligators, the
Honey Island Swamp is also known to be the home of black bears,
red wolves, cougars, feral hogs and most notably, a dwindling
population of Florida panthers. But there are some who believe
that deep in the vast recesses of the swamp... in an area
so impenetrable that one can only travel there by foot, horseback
or boat... in a place so primeval, even experienced guides
have known to become lost... there lives a ferocious predator
more lethal than all others who lurk therein.
The legend of the Honey Island Swamp was first revealed to
the world in 1974, when a pair of Air Traffic Controllers,
Harlan E. Ford and Ray Mills, shambled out of the deep antediluvian
sloughs of Honey Island with an unbelievable story... and
something even more incredible.
The veteran hunters claimed to have discovered a pair of unusual
footprints imbedded in the soft earth next to a wild boar
whose throat had been torn open. They saw something else that
day. Something that would change their lives
forever... they saw a monster.
They described a vicious looking creature that stood on two
legs. A man-like animal that was covered with a coat dingy,
gray hair. The men estimated that this beast stood over 7
feet tall and weighed somewhere between 400 and 500 lbs. But
what they remembered most were its sickly yellow eyes, set
far apart on its skull, and the horrific stench which surrounded
this creature... it was the smell of death.
Thus begins the first official report of the Honey Island
Swamp Monster, but the stories of this enigmatic beast date
back for hundreds of years. Native Americans called this creature
the Letiche, "a carnivorous, aquatic-humanoid" which
they believed was once a once an abandoned child who was raised
by alligators in uncharted regions of the swamp. Cajuns called
the beast the Loup Carou, which has often been misinterpreted
as a werewolf. This animal has been blamed for the numerous
human and livestock deaths which have plagued the area for
Perhaps the most bizarre legend surrounding the swamp monster
revolves around a train wreck which allegedly occurred outside
of the Pearl River in the early part of the 20th century.
According to this account, the train was full of animals from
a traveling circus, some of which escaped into the swamp.
While most of these tropical beasts perished soon after, legend
has it that a troop of chimpanzees survived and even went
so far as to inter-breed with alligators. The result was a
bizarre colony of repto-mammalian hybrids, which became legendary
as the Honey Island Swamp Monsters.
The mystery continues to this day with more and more eyewitness
reports filtering in on a yearly basis. Whatever this animal
is, three things are for sure... this creature is large, it
is carnivorous and it does not want to be found.