Nature 270:656, 1977.

"Koskolteras Rhombopterix?"


A Loch-Ness-type monster, 15 m long with a head 2 m long by 1 m wide has been reported in Lake Kos Kol, Kazakhtan. An unnamed commentator on Moscow radio observed that since several "extinct" species have recently been discovered to be still surviving, he considered it quite possible that "unknown creatures of the kind reported in both these lakes" might, indeed, exist. What he did not suggest, however, is any kind of joint Soviet-British (or Kazakh-Scottish) study project. This seems a strange omission; joint scientific research is a major feature in all discussions of mutual cooperation, and a possible monster investigation would enliven what too often become dull routine talks on oil drilling equipment and fertiliser plants. Indeed, should the two creatures prove to be of the same species, an interbreeding project might not be beyond the bounds of all possibility!