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Impundulu

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The fat of the bird is believed to be of significance either as the fuel that the bird sets on fire when it throws down a lightning strike or as a component in valuable traditional medicine. The fat is believed to be procured by catching the bird at the moment when the lightning strikes the ground, or by digging the bird up from an underground cavity at the spot. The bird is furthermore believed to lay a large egg underground at the location of the lightning strike. This may be a good or bad omen that may require digging to procure or dispose of the eggs. This creature has another similarity to vampires, it is said that the lightning bird is immortal, because it outlives its masters. Legend recounts that the bird is passed down in a witch’s family from mother to daughter, doing the bidding of its owner, and the impundulu has only one known weakness. The lightning bird is impervious to gunshots or stabbing, you cannot poison it or drown it, but it is said that the creature can be destroyed by fire.

In 2005, a South African man was convicted of culpable homicide after killing a two-year-old child he believed to be an impundulu. [4]


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