A video claimed to depict a bizarre river monster surfaced about a week ago, showing a long, serpentine form apparently swimming in glacial river in eastern Iceland.
Could it be Lagarfljótsormurinn, a lake monster of Icelandic legend?
Some say yes; others aren't so sure. Many suggested it was a real (known) animal, or a computer-generated hoax, or even a mechanically manipulated faked creature. The YouTube video, whatever its subject, has gotten over 3 million views.
NEWS: Is This the Icelandic River Monster?
There are a few things that it pretty much could not be, starting with what it appears to be: a snake. Snakes are exothermic; they can't regulate their body temperature and must depend on the environment to do so. That's why snakes in the wild can sometimes be seen basking in the sun early in the morning - they're trying to warm up. While some species of snakes are aquatic, they typically live in much warmer climes; the last place a snake would want be is an ice-filled stream.
Because of the poor quality, shakiness, and brevity of the footage, it's not even clear that the would-be monster is actually moving. It seems to be heading upstream, but that could just be an illusion created by the water moving past it. It could be making progress toward the shore-or its head might be simply sitting there, more or less stationary in the water while the "body" contorts with the current.