Destination TruthCreatures

Sometimes affectionately referred to as "Brazil's Bigfoot," the mapinguary (also spelled "mapinguari") is a biped whose reputation has become embedded in local lore.

In one version of its legend, the creature is said to speak and punish hunters, and it is remarkably tough — even bulletproof. It has been called "the roaring animal" or "the fetid beast," and descriptions vary between claiming it has one or two eyes, and perhaps a mouth set in its belly.

All those who tell the tale of the mapinguary agree that it emits a foul odor, though they differ as to whether the stench is the product of its poor hygene or a defensive mechanism.

Other sightings have described the seven-foot-tall, hirsute creature as less human-looking than its North American cousin, closer to a giant sloth whose ancestors somehow survived the last Ice Age and evaded most human contact.

Fossils discovered recently in the Amazon rain forest suggest the sloth theory might lie closer to the truth.

Tell us what you think about your favorite NBCU programs by becoming a TV panel member.