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The Cigau, (pronounced chee-gohw) also called the Sumatran Golden Lion, is supposedly a carnivorous, mid-sized cat. Natives claim to have sighted this feline near the market town of Bangko and Mount Kerinci. Its location, the Indonesian island of Sumatra, where new species are constantly being discovered, gives it a higher possibility of being real. 

Description[]

It is golden in color without any stripes or spots, and has a ruff of long fur on its neck. The cigau has a very short tail in comparison to its body size. It is smaller, but yet stockier than the tiger. The cigau is also said to be highly aggressive and has previously attacked humans. Similar to other prehistoric big cats, the feline has longer front legs than hind legs. The creature is usually described as a liger (a cross between a lion and a tiger). This description suggests that it's a subspecies of the nearly extinct Asiatic lion.

Sightings[]

In the 1960s, the cigau supposedly killed a man in the middle of the night. As cryptozoologist Richard Freeman writes following an expedition in 2003: 

"In the dead of night the cigau came from the forest to claim him. It stalked right into their camp and dragged him off into the darkness. It was smaller but stockier than a tiger. It had a silvery lion like mane and golden fur. Its forelegs were longer than its back legs like the build of a hyena. It had a short, tufted, cow like tail. The men searched the jungle frantically for their lost comrade but when they found him he was minus a stomach, disemboweled by the cigau."

Explanations[]

  • Cigau could be a surviving member of Hemimachairodus, a sabre-toothed felid found in Java (though Java and Sumatra during the Pleistocene are still a large landmass called the Sundaland)
  • Alternatively it could be surviving member of Homotherium latidens, also found in Java.

Sources[]

CFZ Australia article

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