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EMELA-NTOUKA #EMELANTOUKA The size of an elephant itself, but semi-aquatic, the emela-ntouka is said to have a long heavy tail, four sturdy legs, and, most notable of all, a very long, sharp horn borne upon its snout. On first sight, this cryptid sounds like some form of rhinoceros. However, its long heavy tail differs dramatically from the short, lightweight version possessed by all known rhino species. So too does its horn, for whereas those of rhinoceroses are nothing more than masses of compressed hair, according to native testimony the emela-ntouka’s is said to resemble the ivory tusk of an elephant. As ivory is only associated with tusks and teeth, not horns, however, it is probable that if the pygmies' claim about it is correct, the emela-ntouka's horn is composed of bone. Its behaviour is also very distinctive. Although wholly herbivorous, the emela-ntouka is claimed to be extremely belligerent, so much so that if even something as mighty as an elephant or buffalo enters a lake in which one of these creatures is residing, the latter will not hesitate to attack the intruder - stabbing and disembowelling its hapless victim with its formidable snout-horn. Following his own investigations of this extraordinary beast, Mackal proposed, albeit cautiously, that it may actually be a surviving ceratopsian or horned dinosaur – i.e. belonging to a group of huge herbivorous dinosaurs that included such prehistoric stalwarts as Triceratops andStyracosaurus. Many ceratopsians possessed more than one horn, but at least one famous example, Centrosaurus (formerly calledMonoclonius), bore only a single horn, at the end of its nose – and reconstructions ofCentrosaurus certainly recall descriptions of the emela-ntouka. Moreover, because the horns of ceratopsians were true horns (composed of bone), not compressed hair, they may well have resembled ivory, just like the emela-ntouka’s; and all ceratopsians had long heavy tails, providing yet another match with the emela-ntouka.

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