Illustration of the creature
Map of circuses in the U.S.
|First Sighting||Mid 1800s|
|Last Sighting||Early 1900s|
|Country||United States of America|
The Godaphro is a Fearsome Critter of the lumberjack stories of North America. It was either described as a deer with rabbit ears and fangs or as a kind of giant lizard.
The Godaphro is characterized as having some legs shorter than the other which gives it the ability to walk easily on hilly and rocky terrain. It also swung from the trees with a powerful tail. It was once a part of a wild animal shows in circuses.
Many people paid to see it but the circus entertainers warned that it had escaped. People fled in fear and the entertainers were able to profit from all their takings. Another tells of a farmer who was able to breed the Godaphro with his sheep producing a pet that easily walked the hilly farms but was slow on flat roads. Other names for this creature include: Cutercurse, Cuter-Cuss, Godphro, Gouger, Guyanoosa, Gwinter, Hunkus, Lunkus, Mountain Stem-Winder, Prock, Prock Gwinter, Sidehill-Dodger, Sidehill-Ganger, Rickaboo Racker, Rockabore, Sawger, Sideswipe and Sidewinder.
It is possible that this creature sighted was a type of musk deer (Genus:
Musk deer are more primitive than cervids, or true deer, because they lack antlers and facial glands, and possess only a single pair of teats, a gall bladder, a caudal gland, a pair of tusk-like teeth and—of particular economic importance to humans—a musk gland.
Musk deer live mainly in forested and alpine scrub habitats in the mountains of southern Asia, notably the Himalayas. Moschids, the proper term when referring to this type of deer rather than one/multiple species of musk deer, are entirely Asian in their present distribution, being extinct in Europe where the earliest musk deer are known to have existed from Oligocene deposits.
It is likely that circuses used this genus as Godaphro, as the fang and leg height descriptions match that of Moschus.