William T. Cox's
“ F E A R S O M E   C R E A T U R E S   O F   T H E   L U M B E R W O O D S
( 100th A N N I V E R S A R Y   H Y P E R T E X T   E D I T I O N )



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Central American Whintosser.
THE CENTRAL AMERICAN WHINTOSSER.
(Cephalovertens semperambulatus.)

        In the spring of 1906 there appeared suddenly in the Coast Ranges of California an uncanny animal from the region of the Isthmus. It is not a large beast, but what it lacks in size it makes up in meanness of disposition. None of the lumber jacks who have met a whintosser on trail or tote road care to have the experience repeated. The Central American whin- tosser is always looking for trouble or making it. In fact the beast seems to be constructed for the purpose of passing through unusual experiences. Its head is fastened to its body by a swivel neck ; so is its short, tampering tail ; and both can be spun around at the rate of a hundred revolutions a minute. The body is long and triangular, with three complete sets of legs ; this is a great convenience in an earthquake country, since the animal is not disturbed by any convulsions of the earth. If the floor suddenly becomes the ceiling it does not matter, for the whintosser is always there with the legs. Its hair is bristly, and all slants forward at a sharp angle. It has been found that a cat's nine lives are as nothing to the one possessed by a whintosser. This animal may be shot, clubbed, or strung on a pike pole without stopping the wriggling, whirling motions or the screams of rage. The only successful way of killing the beast is to poke it into a flume pipe so that all its feet strike the surface, when it Immediately starts to walk in three different directions at once and tears itself apart. John Gray, of Anadar, Trinity County, California, knows where a pair of whintossers live in some broken-up country along Mad River.

Page Forty-One.

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Fearsome Creatures of the Lumberwoods, With a Few Desert and Mountain Beasts
Written by William T. Cox • Illustrated by Coert Du Bois • With Latin Classifications by George B. Sudworth
(Washington: Judd & Detweiler, Inc., 1910) Original Text and Illustrations Public Domain License.
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