A newspaper article about a Comegato sighting from web series “Tracking the Comegato.” Photos courtesy of Kate Kaminski

Bigfoot. The Mothman. Nessie. The Jersey Devil. Comegato.

Cryptids are creatures that most definitely exist, even if nobody’s ever really presented scientific evidence, snapped a non-blurry image or actually captured one. Legends of these cryptozoological beings proliferate, mutate and multiply through folk tales, oral history and kids’ tingly tales around generations of campfires. The internet has sped that process up exponentially, with new lurkers in the darkness and new wrinkles on old monsters gaining traction daily.

“Fair enough,” readers might concede, “but what’s that ‘Comegato,” you slipped into the list of well-known beasts?”

Good catch, as the Comegato is Maine’s newest addition to the cryptozoological monster manual. Here’s what we know so far:

Even the name is mysterious.

According to Maine filmmaker Kate Kaminski, who, alongside Gitgo Productions partner Betsy Carson, has just released the web series “Tracking the Comegato,” the creature’s name has a suitably ghoulish meaning. “It’s a combination of the Spanish words for ‘eat’ and ‘cat.’ ”


A sketch of the Comegato by Wilfred James Rosario.

For those who’ve seen it, the Comegato is terrifying.

As described by intrepid filmmakers Kaminski and Carson – who set out to capture footage for “Tracking the Comegato” in the Maine woods armed only with an iPhone and a zoom recorder – this newly discovered Maine cryptid stands around 5 feet tall. That wouldn’t be all that imposing, if it weren’t an impossible hybrid of human and weasel, possessing eerily human eyes and a mouthful of blunt human teeth, and is prone to scurry through the darkness, sniffing the air with seemingly malign purpose.

The Comegateo wants your lobster.

As Kaminski explains, Gitgo Productions’ extensive research, involving interviews and reenactments with still-terrified humans (both Mainers and from away) suggest that the Comegato has an obsessive love (or hatred) of Maine’s signature crustacean delicacy. According to the rundown provided in advance of the series’ debut last week, the Comegato can smell lobster in dumpsters, campsites and even on the clothes (and perhaps even the digestive tracts) of diners foolhardy enough to eat the expensive crustaceans in its vicinity.

The Comegato’s attacks are as unsettling as it is.

According to the testimony of terrified victims in “Tracking the Comegato,” the creature’s M.O. is one of stealth – and nibbling. Said Kaminski, “It only has these ineffectual little teeth, so it’s not going to kill you.” What it does have is acid saliva that numbs lobster-stuffed victims flesh enough that they don’t realize the Comegato has struck until they’re staring directly into the furred face of what is also aptly also known as the Maine Weasel-Man.


The Comegato’s backstory is as heartbreaking as it is illuminating.

According to Kaminsky, “Tracking the Comegato’s” episodes (installments of which will air on Instagram and YouTube every two weeks) trace the beast’s murky origin all the way back to 19th-century rural Maine. “It all started with a remarkable man named Adelbert Bumpus,” explained retired film professor Kaminski. “He had an amazing connection with animals, including a rescued weasel he kept on his shoulder. He was also a Black man in 19th-century Maine, and his white neighbors didn’t like him walking around town with a weasel named Comegato on his shoulder, especially since the weasel had a habit of baring its teeth at people it felt were impolite to Bumpus.” Comegato and Bumpus’ story turned predictably tragic, as Kaminski explains how a lobsterman neighbor shot Comegato with an arrow after the weasel approached his chicken coop (“Weasel gonna weasel,” lamented Kaminski), with the ensuing trail of blood indicating the stricken creature had tried to reach his beloved friend – before being crushed by a vehicle.

OK, that’s terrible. But is the Comegato real?

Kaminski and Carson aren’t saying, instead pointing to the infamous legend of the Hodag for comparison. “The Hodag is one of the all-time cryptid hoaxes,” said Kaminski. “It happened in the early 20th century in Wisconsin and, even though people had photos, it was determined to be a hoax. But the Hodag is still celebrated today with festivals, a town statue. Just because something’s not verified doesn’t mean it’s not real.” Kaminski also points to the fact that TikTok took the shady step of banning a “Tracking the Comagato” promo video from its platform as proof that someone doesn’t want the truth getting out. “There are (expletive)-tons of cryptid videos on TikTok with titles like ‘The Mothman in My Backyard!’,” complains Kaminski, “but we got banned. I think we did our job too well.”

Mariah Klapatch as Cybil Sanderberg with Comegato scat in “Tracking the Comegato.”

Right… but c’mon, is the Comegato really out there?

Viewers of this undeniably entertaining and compelling series might spot some familiar Maine movie scene faces (Mariah Klapatch, Thomas Ian Campbell, Paul Drinan, Caulin Morrison, Christine Marshall) among the eyewitnesses and experts. And OK, the signature Gitgo Productions style of witty improvisation and Maine-centric humor marks “Tracking the Comegato’s” improbable tale of a lobster-hunting Maine Weasel-Man. But maybe that’s just Maine being Maine – and Comegato being Comegato.

It’s time to make up your own mind.

Regardless of your stance on the existence of cryptids, Kaminski and Carson have built up a fascinating, weird little mythology about the creature that’s captured their imagination, complete with an emerging theme that many of the Comegato’s present-day victims all seem to have gone to the same defunct Maine summer camp. And, sure, Kamp Krus-Tay-Shin doesn’t pop up in any Google searches, but then neither does the Comegato – yet. So either respected filmmakers Kate Kaminski and Betsy Carson have created both out of whole cloth just to add a little magic and mystery to Maine, or there’s something out there that somebody doesn’t want us to see. You be the judge.

“Tracking the Comegato” can be viewed on its Instagram page and the Gitgo Productions YouTube channel. You know, if you dare.

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