The Yowie, AKA Yahoo or Yowie-Whowie, is a legendary creature said to inhabit the wilderness of Australia. There are several variations of the Yowie legend and conflicting accounts of its origins.
The term Yowie is found in Australian Aboriginal folklore, referring to an ape-like creature with canine teeth and large red eyes located on the sides of its head.1 A night-time predator, the Yowie is thought to occasionally feed on humans. This is not the same creature described in modern European legends.
Jonathan Swift’s “Gulliver's Travels” (1726) features a race of subhuman creatures called the Yahoos. It is possible that early European settlers in Australia confused the Aboriginal word Yowie with the fictional Yahoo.
The popular modern image of a Yowie is more like a yeti, i.e. more humanoid and less predatory.
Sightings of the Yowie have been reported mainly in New South Wales and the Queensland's Gold Coast. Sightings have also been reported from New Zealand, in North Auckland, the Coromandel Peninsula and the West Coast.2