Encyclopaedia of Cryptozoology
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Illustration of Sylviornis by Miyess Mitri.

The du is a cryptid flightless bird reported from New Caledonia, widely regarded as the "New Caledonian sylvornis" (Sylviornis neocaledoniae). Sylviornis is considered to be extinct, with the du representing a cultural memory, but some New Caledonian people speak of it as if it were still alive.[1][2]

The new caledonian sylvornis or dufowl was thought to be a megapode but skeletons of hunted specimens from the holocene (our era) show it is related more to galliformes, which includes rails, chickens, peacocks and other game. A relative of sylvornis lived on Fiji.

This cryptid is regarded as a cryptid that is actually real but went extinct in human times. Others include megatherium sightings. Dinosaur sightings can be also regarded as this as dinosaurs once existed although not in human times.


During a visit to New Caledonia in 1991, cryptozoologist Lars Thomas learned that "the native people speak of the du as if it were still alive today, and describe it accurately".[1]

Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Shuker, Karl P. N. (1995) In Search of Prehistoric Survivors: Do Giant 'Extinct' Creatures Still Exist?, Blandford, ISBN 9780713-724691
  2. Shuker, Karl P. N. (2007) Extraordinary Animals Revisited: From Singing Dogs To Serpent Kings, CFZ Press, ISBN 1-905723-17-1