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(Great Snake of the Orange River)
Grouping Cryptid
Sub grouping Reptile
Similar creatures Irizima, Mokele-mbembe
Country South Africa, Dahomey
Region Richtersveld
Habitat caves, swamps, freshwater

The Grootslang or Groot Slang (Afrikaans for "big snake"), is a legendary cryptid that is reputed to dwell in a deep cave in the Richtersveld, South Africa.



Similar to a large serpent, the creature is supposedly 12 m (40 ft) long and 1 m (3 ft) wide, according to witnesses. It is claimed to devour elephants by luring them into its cave. In Benin, it is known as an elephant with a serpent tail.


The cave is known as the “Wonder Hole” or the “Bottomless Pit.” Supposedly, it connects to the sea, which is 40 miles away. According to local legend, the cave is filled with diamonds. [1]


Wealthy English businessman Peter Grayson mounted an expedition in 1917 to find the Grootslang. After a series of injuries to his party, he set off on his own. He was never seen again.[2]

Other media

  • A Grootslang was featured in The Secret Saturdays episode "Something in the Water." It is depicted as a four-tusked green-skinned elephant with ram horns and a spiked snake tail. The Saturdays had to relocate a Grootslang away from human settlements by baiting it with a large piece of pork.


  1. ^ Digest, Reader's (1975). Strange Stories, Amazing Facts. Montreal: Reader's Digest. p. 430. 
  2. ^ Floyd, Rendall (September 20, 1998). "Disappearances feed Grootslang legend". The Augusta Chronicle. Retrieved 2009-09-06. 


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