The dreaded Ahuizotl lives at the bottom of deep lakes and pools of freshwater. It cries like a baby to lure people near, then pulls its victim underwater. Several days later, the victim’s drowned corpse surfaces, missing its eyes, teeth, and nails.
The Ahuizotl, about the size of a dog, resembles a cross between a monkey and a dog, but with canine pointy ears. It has a hand on the end of its tail with which to grab victims. The Ahuizotl can come out of the water onto land, but allegedly it doesn’t travel far from the water’s edge.
The Ahuizotl is a guardian spirit of freshwater fish and thus the natural adversary of fishing people. However, in the process of guarding its charges, it seems to have developed a fondness for munching on humans and is clever enough to trick even those with no designs on fish to come close enough to kill. There is also a theory that the Ahuizotl is a cryptid (an animal that, although discussed, has not yet been proven to exist), perhaps some kind of killer otter.
Ahuizotl is also the name of the Aztec ruler who reigned just before Moctezuma II and the arrival of the conquistadors. Considered among the fiercest, most successful Aztec military leaders, the Ahuizotl for whom he is named may have been his nahual, his sacred soul animal.