1. Diplocaulus Still Alive !
2. We are looking at a real creature.
Stories accompanying a set of pictures circulating online claim to show that an unusual amphibian Diplocaulus was found in real, and that the extinct creature is still alive. No, what is shown is not a fact.
What is Diplocaulus
Diplocaulus, which means ‘double caul,’ is an extinct genus of early amphibians from the Permian period of North America. With an odd and distinctive boomerang-shaped skull (head), Diplocaulus is unusual in its appearance. With salamander-like body, Diplocaulus was relatively large, reaching up to 1 m (3.3 ft) in length. Eighth picture in Image Gallery shows the skull of Diplocaulus magnicornis at the Museum for Naturkunde Berlin, and the ninth one shows the fossilized skeleton of a Diplocaulus at the University of Michigan Museum of Natural History in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA.
The Current Pictures of Creature
The current pictures supposedly showing a Diplocaulus found in real in fact show a model art made by Japanese model maker Goro Furuta; the woman seen in one of the pictures. You can see the same model of Diplocaulus in seventh picture of Image Gallery, resting beside another model of what appears like an alligator. So the picture stories saying the unusual amphibian Diplocaulus was found alive are hoaxes.
Another Old Picture
The last picture in Image Gallery showing the strange looking animal captured in a bucket is associated with another old story with similar claims of Diplocaulus. Few years back, there were hoax emails doing rounds saying the animal was found either at Il-Maghluq in Marsascala, or in Bahrija. Back then, there were questions whether it was a salamander or a lizard, and whether it is a native species or an alien. In that case too, it was a Japanese model-maker who created a replica of the small diplocaulus, and put it in a pan of water in his lawn. The photo was taken back in 1992 and submitted to a magazine as part of a contest; the Diplocaulus model nonetheless looks realistic in a natural setting.
Hoax or Fact: