After my encounters with the peaceful yales and the majestic unicorn, I have never thought a large ungulate would be unpleasant to look at until I discovered the catoblepas; standing at a height of 2 meters tall, this large herbivore is one of the foulest swamp-living creatures you could ever see. It has the general appearance of a bovine, with a bulky body, long, supple legs, long, a long, semi-conical head with mid-sized, mobile ears on its sides (just a little distance behind the animal's small, blood red eyes), and large, curved horns; however, its neck is extremely long (due to the lengthening of its cervical vertebrae), it has large tusks protruding from the sides of its jaws, and due to how heavy its head is, it always holds its neck and head downwards, as if it were depressed. This is perhaps the best way you'll be able to see it walking around, for if it raises its head, your situation quickly becomes dangerous. Catoblepas are territorial, and raising their head usually signifies that they are alert for danger, threatened, or angry; if it detects you while feeling one of the three emotions, you are in for a fight with one of the worst hellspawn to walk through the murky bogs.
Catoblepas are herbivorous, feeding on a wide variety of plants low to the ground, such as ferns, mosses, and liverworts; due to their abnormally high threshold for poison, they are also capable of feeding on plants that would be toxic for any other animal. If they eat enough of these poisonous plants, they become able to breathe a noxious gas that asphyxiates anyone foolish enough to approach these eerie herbivores; if such foes manage to avoid the toxic gas and keep on bothering the catoblepas, they will raise their head, stare their attacker dead in the face, stamp their hooves, and emit a terrifying bellow that rings through the dark marshes. They will then start charging at the poor soul who dared to provoke them, right before proceeding to pound them into a paste by slamming into them with their powerful necks, goring them with their curved horns, or even trampling them with their clomping hooves. Due to this territorial behavior and unpredictable attacking method, catoblepas are considered one of the scariest beasts of Terra Pecunia, right in the same league as the petrifying cockatrice and the hair-raising hell hounds; combined with their foul breath and ugly look, this makes them something people are better off avoiding like the plague.
"He was the biggest wildebeest I'd ever seen. He was 14 feet tall- I meant, 14... hundred... a-a-and one feet tall! And he had two... no, FOUR of the biggest horns I've ever seen. His breath was red hot... I mean, green, but he hated the environment. To pull this off, I knew I was going to have to dig deep, deeper than I ever had before."
My fourteenth mythical creature factfile so far, featuring the ominous, heavy-headed Catoblepas! If you have any questions about it, ask me!