The Cadborosaurus: Separating Fact from Fiction in a Sea Serpent’s Tale

  • By: Timothy Rose
  • Date: 16 December 2023
  • Time to read: 8 min.


Have you heard of Nessie? Sure, you have! But let’s turn the spotlight onto a lesser-known but equally captivating sea monster – the Cadborosaurus, or ‘Caddy’ for short. More intriguing, less Hollywood, and definitely deserving of your attention.

Off the jagged and breathtaking coastline of British Columbia, stories about Caddy have surfed the waves for centuries. They say there’s a creature out there, longer than a school bus, undulating through the cold Pacific waters with an elegance that belies its monstrous size.

Diving into the origins of Caddy, it’s evident that these stories are not just recent whispers on the wind. Indigenous tribes of the Pacific Northwest, including the Tlingit and Salish, have long shared tales of a sea serpent-like creature, known by different names across various tribes.

Many of these legends describe a creature strikingly similar to Caddy, complete with a serpentine body and distinctive camel-like head. For centuries, these stories have been passed down through generations, contributing to the cultural fabric of these communities.

The name Cadborosaurus itself comes from Cadboro Bay, where many reported sightings have occurred over the years. The suffix ‘saurus’, inspired by dinosaur taxonomy, denotes its monstrous, prehistoric vibe. But don’t let the name fool you, this isn’t a Jurassic Park reject. Caddy is a creature all its own, steeped in the culture and lore of the British Columbia coastline.


The Enigmatic Creature: Descriptions and Sightings

Every legend has its foundations, and for Cadborosaurus, these lie in the numerous eyewitness accounts and historical sightings. One of the earliest recorded sightings dates back to 1933 when a couple, peacefully enjoying Cadboro Bay, reported seeing a large, snake-like creature frolicking in the waters.

A surge of sightings in the mid-1930s saw Caddy vaulted from local murmurs to public consciousness. Tales from fishermen, beach strollers, and local residents filled the local newspapers. The infamous 1937 incident further ignited public interest, where a supposed Caddy carcass was found inside a sperm whale. This event sparked widespread fascination and debate.

The creature, as described by eyewitnesses, paints a consistent yet perplexing image: a sea serpent extending anywhere from 40 to 70 feet, a head resembling that of a horse or a camel, and a long, sinuous body. Some witnesses mention vertical coils or humps, while others speak of apparent flippers, adding to the speculative nature of the creature’s identity.

Differences in descriptions could be influenced by multiple factors like the viewing distance, weather conditions, and personal interpretation. The creature’s versatile movement – some accounts describe vertical undulation, others horizontal gliding – adds an additional layer of enigma to Caddy’s identity.

Most reports of Caddy sightings come from the coast of British Columbia, particularly around Cadboro Bay, lending the creature its name. However, sightings are not confined to this area. They’ve sprung up all along the Pacific Northwest, reaching as far north as the freezing waters of Alaska, and as far south as San Francisco.

The wide geographic spread of sightings further fuels the fascination with Cadborosaurus. Whether it’s a single creature, an undiscovered species, or just a case of mistaken identity, only time – and perhaps more definitive evidence – will tell.

Cryptozoological Analysis

In the fascinating realm of cryptozoology, Cadborosaurus, or ‘Caddy,’ is a beloved character. Cryptozoology, a field that pursues creatures whose existence hasn’t been proven, is often met with skepticism. Yet, it never fails to ignite public imagination. Within this discipline, Caddy is classified as a sea serpent – a category brimming with tantalizing stories of colossal marine monsters that have circulated for centuries.

When compared to other cryptids, Caddy’s distinctiveness lies in its purported appearance and geographical range. Its camel-like head and elongated, undulating body draw parallels to the famous Loch Ness Monster of Scotland. Yet, its reported behavior, more consistent with marine mammals than with reptiles or dinosaurs, makes it a cryptid of a different stripe.

Comparisons with known marine creatures also offer some interesting hypotheses. The oarfish, the world’s longest bony fish, bears a superficial resemblance to Caddy, with its long, slender body. The vertical undulations described in some Caddy sightings also mimic the oarfish’s locomotion. Another plausible candidate is the frilled shark, which, with its elongated body and peculiar head shape, could fit some descriptions of Caddy. Despite these possibilities, none of these animals fully match the size, shape, and behavior consistently attributed to Caddy, leaving the cryptid’s identity a mystery.

Witness testimonies form the cornerstone of any cryptozoological investigation. While the abundance of Caddy sightings adds a level of credibility to the beast’s existence, eyewitness accounts are, by nature, subjective and prone to inaccuracies. Misidentification of known animals, exaggerated recounts, and even hoaxes, are all factors that cryptozoologists must contend with.

Studying cryptids, like Caddy, presents unique challenges. The vast, inaccessible nature of the ocean, the rarity of sightings, and the lack of physical evidence, make it difficult to apply standard scientific methods. Until we find conclusive proof, Caddy will continue to hold its enigmatic place in cryptozoology – a symbol of our planet’s remaining mysteries and our unending curiosity to uncover them.

From oral traditions of indigenous tribes to eyewitness accounts of locals, Cadborosaurus, or ‘Caddy,’ has swum its way into the folklore of British Columbia and beyond. Indigenous communities, such as the Tlingit and Salish, have shared tales of a sea serpent-like creature for centuries, pre-dating modern accounts. This mythical being, described similarly to Caddy, was revered and feared, occupying a significant place in their cultural narratives.

Over the years, stories about Caddy sightings have continued to captivate residents and visitors of the Pacific Northwest. These stories, shared around campfires or over bar counters, have taken on a life of their own. Through each retelling, the legend grows, shifting and adapting with each new generation. This continued storytelling, driven by a blend of fear, fascination, and respect for the sea’s mysteries, has played a pivotal role in cementing Caddy’s place in local folklore.

Moreover, these stories have subtly influenced cultural beliefs about the ocean’s vastness and the creatures that might dwell within it. This sense of wonder and curiosity has reinforced the legend of Cadborosaurus, passing it from generation to generation, making it an enduring part of the local cultural heritage.

Could it look like this?

Folklore & Cultural Impact

Cadborosaurus has not just made waves in folklore; it has also created ripples in the economy, particularly in local tourism. ‘Caddy-spotting’ has become a popular activity for tourists, adding a dash of excitement to any visit to the coast. Gift shops sell Caddy memorabilia, and local festivals often feature the sea serpent as a symbol of regional identity. This cryptid has essentially become a mascot, a face for the region’s natural mystery and allure, drawing crowds eager for a glimpse of the legendary creature.

Cadborosaurus, or ‘Caddy,’ has found a place in popular culture, featuring in various books and television shows. In literature, it is examined in “In Search of Ogopogo: Sacred Creature of the Okanagan Waters” by Arlene Gaal and “Discovering Cadborosaurus” by Paul Leblond and Edward Bousfield. As for television, Cadborosaurus has made appearances in episodes of the Discovery Channel’s “Animal X” and the History Channel’s “MonsterQuest,” where the exploration of cryptids and unexplained phenomena takes center stage.

In essence, Cadborosaurus is more than just a cryptid. It’s a symbol, a story, and an economic driver, reflecting the intertwining of folklore, cultural beliefs, tourism, and popular culture. It underscores our enduring fascination with the mysteries lurking beneath the surface of our world, and our unending curiosity to uncover them.

Scientific investigation and criticism

Despite the mythic status of Cadborosaurus, it hasn’t escaped the scrutiny of science. Over the years, several research efforts and expeditions have aimed to unravel the mystery of this sea serpent. For instance, Discovery Channel’s “Animal X” and History Channel’s “MonsterQuest” both launched investigations that included marine biologists and cryptozoologists. However, due to the elusive nature of the subject and the vastness of its supposed habitat, these expeditions have yet to provide definitive proof of Caddy’s existence.

Yet the field of cryptozoology, where Cadborosaurus lies, often faces skepticism and criticism. Many scientists see it as pseudoscience because it operates outside standard scientific methodologies. A lack of testable hypotheses, reliance on anecdotal evidence, and the absence of peer-reviewed studies are the main sticking points for critics. The primary evidence — eyewitness accounts — is often viewed as unreliable and subject to misinterpretation.

Indeed, the credibility of potential evidence is a contentious issue. One of the most famous pieces of evidence is the “Naden Harbour carcass,” a supposed Cadborosaurus found in the stomach of a whale in 1937. However, multiple analyses have suggested it might be a fetal baleen whale rather than a new species. Additionally, while numerous photos and videos purport to show Caddy, none have been confirmed as genuine. The interpretation of such evidence is often subjective, depending on one’s belief in cryptids’ existence.

Thus, while the legend of Cadborosaurus persists, it continues to be a tug-of-war between science and folklore. For many, the lack of concrete evidence doesn’t deter belief but rather spurs the curiosity that keeps the legend alive. Until we have definitive answers, Caddy remains a tantalizing symbol of the ocean’s enduring mysteries.

Possible Explanation & Theories

In the absence of solid evidence, a variety of hypotheses have been proposed to explain the Cadborosaurus legend. Some argue that the creature could be a relic population of long-extinct marine reptiles, such as plesiosaurs or mosasaurs. Others suggest Caddy could be an undiscovered species of large sea serpent or an oversized oarfish, known for its long, slender body and snake-like movements.

Biological and ecological factors could also contribute to misidentifications, fueling the legend. Common marine creatures, when seen under certain conditions, might be mistaken for the legendary beast. A swimming moose, surfacing seals, drifting kelp, or even wave patterns have been suggested as possible culprits. The fleeting nature of these sightings, often at a distance and in challenging weather conditions, complicates accurate identification.

Moreover, cultural influences and psychological factors may play a significant role in shaping sightings. The human mind is prone to pareidolia – the tendency to see patterns, like familiar shapes or faces, where none exist. Coupled with local lore and the expectation of seeing a sea serpent, this could lead observers to interpret ordinary events as extraordinary.

The fear of the unknown, fascination with mystery, and the allure of being part of something bigger also contribute to the persistence of Caddy sightings. Indeed, whether it’s a case of mistaken identity, an undiscovered creature, or simply a figment of collective imagination, the Cadborosaurus legend continues to hold its spell, embodying humanity’s enduring curiosity for the unexplained.


Through centuries of storytelling, Cadborosaurus has leapt from local lore to popular culture, captivating the imaginations of both the curious and the skeptical. Its enduring allure lies in the composite picture of our fascination with the uncharted territories of our world, our penchant for a good mystery, and our timeless love for a compelling tale.

While the field of cryptozoology has faced criticism, the study of cryptids like Cadborosaurus sparks important questions about undiscovered species and the vastness of our oceans. It keeps us questioning, exploring, and yearning to understand the world around us. Therefore, further academic research into cryptozoology should be encouraged, keeping in mind the need for scientific rigor and critical thinking.

Ultimately, the legend of Cadborosaurus serves as a reminder of the importance of evidence-based investigations in the study of unknown creatures. It highlights our duty to approach the mysteries of our world with an open mind, yet one that demands clear, concrete evidence.

Whether Cadborosaurus will one day move from the realm of myth to marine biology is a question that only time and persistent exploration can answer. Until then, the legend of Caddy will continue to weave its spell, reminding us of the oceans’ untamed and unexplored wilderness.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Previous Post

The Pope Lick Monster: A Legendary Tale of Horror and Mystery

Next Post

The Michigan Dogman: Investigating the Legend of a Fearsome Cryptid