- Ghost Ranch 'snake-demon' Vivaron
- United States ()
Ghost Ranch in north-central New Mexico's Rio Arriba County earns its name from the many sightings made here for generations of a huge ghostly reptile of serpentine form and measuring 6-9 m long, which has been dubbed Vivaron, the snake-demon, by local inhabitants. Initially dismissed as mere folklore, it acquired greater significance and attention when, in 1947, palaeontologist Edwin H. Colbert unearthed a huge cache of fossil skeletons in this same area, derived from various prehistoric reptiles. These not only included more than a thousand dinosaur specimens but also a very elongate 9-m-long crocodile-like creature known as a phytosaur. Its discovery led to speculation that the paranormal "snake-demon" being reported by the locals was the ghost of this phytosaur! If this were true, and bearing in mind that its fossil skeleton is 220 million years old, dating from the Triassic Period, the phytosaur's spectre would therefore be the world's oldest ghost!