A perhaps-apocryphal worm or worm-like creature said to inhabit the Gobi Desert. Mongolians call it Allghoi khorkhoi, or "Intestine worm", as the 2-4 foot long creature is often likened to a cow's intestine. Stories abound of it killing people upon their touching it, and even being able to spit poison (or hurl electricity) to kill from a distance. Scientists have postulated that the creature may in fact be a kind of skink or death adder.

Debatable "facts" and theories I've been able to find about, my friend and yours, the Mongolian DEATH Worm* (aside from what's mentioned in the earlier write-up):

  • Mentioning the worm is considered bad luck by the Mongolians.
  • The worm can instantly kill its victims from up to several feet away through the use of either a highly dangerous and almost instanteous acting poison, acid, or electric shock.
  • Czech author Ivan Mackerle is regarded as the foremost investigator of the worm. Prior to 1990, Mackerle had trouble finding information about the worm not only because it's supposedly bad luck to discuss it but because the communist Mongolian government regarded the creature as a myth and forbid searches for it.
  • When Mackerle was finally able to venture into the Gobi Desert, after the Mongolians rejected communism, to search for the worm, he was warned that the worm used a corrosive acid that damaged anything it touched and turned whatever the acid affected yellow.
  • One story about the worm says it's attracted to the colour yellow: A child was outside playing with a yellow box. A Mongolian death worm crawled inside and killed the child with a touch. The child's parents found the body and a wavy trail leading off into the desert. Intending to slay the worm, the parents followed the trail but the worm ended up killing them too.
  • A woman in Mongolia told Mackerle that the death worm travels beneath the sand. When the worm wants to kill, it moves half its body to the surface and a bubble on its body begins to inflate. Eventually, the bubble becomes too large and poison squirts out of it.
  • It's unlikely the Mongolian Death Worm, if real, is actually a worm because the dry climate would be too hard for a worm to survive in. It's more likely it's some sort of reptile, such as a snake or legless lizard.
  • Mackerle suggests that the worm might be a skink, a type of lizard whose head and tail are nearly identical in appearance. There is also a type of lizard called the worm lizard Mackerle suggests it could be related as well, since skinks typically have scales and legs. Neither known type of lizard is poisonous.
  • Some suggest that the worm may be a type of death adder, which is poisonous and can spit venom. All known death adders are only native to New Guinea and Australia, though a death adder could theoretically survive in the Gobi desert.

*DEATH emphasised for fun and (no) profit.
Information source(s): www.parascope.com/en/cryptozoo/predators06.htm and other websites with much the same information.

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