Beastly Tales

Historical accounts of human encounters with some rather dangerous creatures in the Sunshine State, including all-too-real sharks, tigers and crocodiles, and also the not-so-real bunyips and other beasts of our imagination.


Sharks vs Dogs in the Brisbane River When Bull Sharks and pet dogs share the Brisbane River, there can only be one outcome.

The New Farm Shark Attack of 1862: Fact or Fiction? Did a reported shark attack in the Brisbane River near New Farm in 1862 really happen?

Fatal Shark Attacks in Ross Creek, Townsville Townsville's Ross Creek has been the scene of more city waterway deaths than anywhere else in Queensland. You can read about them all here.

The Swagman & the Logan River Shark The Logan River in southeast Queensland has been the scene of a fatal shark attack involving a Bull Shark and a swagman. Find out all about the tragic event here.

Fatal Shark Attacks in Mackay Rivers Read about two fatal attacks in the supposedly quiet waters than run through the central Queensland city of Mackay.

White Sharks Can't Jump: A 19th-Century Look at Sharks A surprising 19th-century plea for a better understanding of sharks.

A Cooktown Shark Story A vivid description of the capture of a huge shark at Cooktown in 1878.


The Strange Case of the Brisbane River Monster In the 1890s the Queensland town of Lowood was under siege from an incredible river monster. What was the truth behind these events? Find out here.

The Saga of the Thargomindah Bunyip Unleash the Bunyip! In 1941 the town of Thargomindah was rife with rumours of a strange beast in the local lakes. What was it?

The Bunyip vs Jenny Greenteeth The Bunyip of Australian lore has links with the monsters of other cultures in helping to keep children away from natural dangers that surround them.

The Bromelton Bunyip of Beaudesert One of the first descriptions of a bunyip in Queensland came from a lagoon in the Beaudesert area in 1850, and it remains one of the most spectacular.

A History of Queensland Bunyips (Part One): The 19th Century Discover the history of a myriad of 'bunyip' sightings around 19th-century Queensland.

A History of Queensland Bunyips (Part Two): The 20th Century A look at the 20th-century history of bunyip sightings in Queensland.

The Fabulous Creatures of Walter Henry Bone Learn about Walter H Bone, who went from leading the cavalry of the Sultan of Zanzibar to becoming a leading children’s illustrator in early 20th-century Australia.

The Merrimac Bunyip Read about strange bunyip sightings and sounds from the Gold Coast of the 1920s-30s.

Cryptid Cats and Dogs of the Far North Recent reports of thylacine sightings in far north Queensland have sparked interest in the possibility of that the 'Tasmanian tiger' still survives.

Joe Nickell, 'Searching for the Yowie, the Down Under Bigfoot', Skeptical Inquirer Volume 40.2, March/April 2016.


What Would Win in a Fight Between a Tiger and a Bull? Explore the shocking history of staged fights between tigers and bulls.

The Tiger Man of Brisbane Learn about the remarkable Charles Higgins, Brisbane's tiger-tamer extraordinaire.

Tigers, Roller-Coasters & Special Effects: Brisbane’s 19th-Century Dreamworld Discover a 19th-century Brisbane theme park with tigers, giant aquariums and roller coasters.


The Burleigh and Bilinga Sperm Whales Read about the problems caused for Gold Coast authorities when dead Sperm Whales washed ashore there in the 1920s and '30s.

Whaling Days at Tangalooma Read about the years when the Queensland whaling industry killed thousands of whales off Moreton Island.

A Whale Hunt Off Moreton Island A detailed on-board description of a whale hunt off Moreton Island in 1954.

Three Men (and a Humpback) in a Boat: The Yeppoon Whale Tragedy of 1928 Read about a tragic incident involving a breaching Humpback Whale near Rockhampton in 1928.


The Tale of the Logan Crocodile
There were rumours of a big saltwater crocodile near Logan in the early 1900s. But were they true? Find out here.

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