Kushii or Kussie is a cryptid, or mysterious and unidentified creature, believed to live in Lake Kussharo in the northern island of Hokkaido, Japan.
Lake Kussharo is a caldera lake, formed in the crater of a volcano and is the largest of its kind in Japan, as well as the 6th largest lake in the country overall. It also has the largest island in a freshwater lake in Japan, the islet Nakanoshima, which is a composite volcano.
Kushii is reported to be between 10 and 20 meters in length and is most commonly described as having a dark brown color. It is said to have a moderate length neck and possibly humps on its body.
Its head is described as resembling that of a horse, but larger, with silver eyes and possibly two protrusions on top like giraffe horns. Some witnesses have reported the creature making strange grunting or clicking noises and feeling uneasy or disturbed upon seeing it. There have been numerous sightings of Kushii in Lake Kussharo, with some reports claiming the creature can move at high speeds.
In 1974, footage was taken of a mysterious creature moving across the lake quickly and in 1988, a man reported being paced by a large animal while riding in a motorboat. The lake monster gained widespread attention in the 1970s due to multiple high-profile sightings, including one by a group of 40 middle school students and their teachers.
In the 1970s and beyond, there have been numerous sightings of the creature by large groups of people, including a group of 22 tour bus passengers and their driver in 1976 and a group of firefighters in 1997.
There are several theories about the identity of Kushii, including that it could be a surviving dragon, a phantom fish called Itou, or a large American trout. There is also a legend in the area of a giant snake living in the lake, which some believe Kushii could be related to.
Despite numerous sightings, the true identity of the creature remains a mystery. It is possible that it is a previously undiscovered species or it could be an elaborate hoax. Regardless, Kushii remains an enduring legend in the region.