Fear and panic struck a small village in South Africa after a local sheep gave birth to what appears to be a "half-human" lamb.
Residents of Lady Frere in South Africa reported that a sheep in their village gave birth to a strange-looking creature that resembled a half-human half-beast. The odd appearance of the animal led elders to believe that it may have been "sent by the devil."
Experts from the Eastern Cape Department of Rural Development were sent to the village after photographs of the half-human lamb began to spread around the community. They conducted several tests to find out what really happened to the deformed animal.
The Truth Behind The Half-Human Lamb
Investigators discovered that the lamb had died after having been born. While the creature did have physical features that looked like those of a human being, they said it was not part human.
Dr. Lubabalo Mrwebi, chief director of veterinary services for the village, said they can confirm that the photograph of the strange creature was not a hoax. It belonged to a newborn lamb that was severely deformed. At a quick glance, the creature may resemble a human form.
Mrwebi, however, clarified that the animal is not a human being but rather a deformed stillborn lamb. Its mother may have been infected with Rift Valley Fever (RVF) while it was going through the early stages of pregnancy.
To further dispel the notion that the creature may have been born through the union of a sheep and a human being, Mrwebi explained the difference between their chromosomes. He said that humans have 23 pairs of chromosomes while sheep have 28 pairs. This means that it won't be possible to conceive a life form by combining human sperm and sheep ovum.
As far as the odd appearance of the lamb goes, Mrwebi said the creature shows signs that it may have experienced a problem during its early fetal development, likely a result of a viral infection to the mother.
Sheep often give birth after a gestation period of about five months. This means that the stillborn lamb may have been conceived between December 2016 and January 2017. Mrwebi believes the mother of the creature may have been infected by the RVF virus during this time since the period is known for plentiful rainfall. It is when virus carriers, such as mosquitoes and midges, are most active in the area.
Other Strange Deformities
In June 2015, a piglet in a village in Colombia was born with two heads and three eyes. The animal was believed to have been born with polycephaly, a condition where two heads are conjoined during development.
The owner of the piglet said his neighbors told him to sacrifice the animal out of fear that its condition might spread to other animals in the farm. He has also received offers from other people to buy the deformed piglet to use an attraction for their businesses.
Meanwhile, in April 2016, a farmer in Malaysia claimed that one of his goats gave birth to a human-like creature. It was born with a bi-pedal frame and a distinctively human face. However, the deformed animal did not survive long following its birth.