The Beast of Busco is an enormous snapping turtle said to have once lurked in Folk Lake near the small town of Churubusco, Indiana. Named “Oscar” for Oscar Fulk, a man who once owned a farm which borders the lake, the turtle haunted the town populace in 1949 and lead to a fruitless hunt which lasted for two months and sparked a small amount of national notoriety.
Have you ever caught one of these things? They're nasty as fuck.
The turtle, presumably 15 feet in length was first reported in July 1948. A year later in March, 1949, after the legend had become publicly known an expedition to capture the beast was undertook by a man named Gale Harris. Supposedly his efforts paid off, and Harris managed to ensnare the creature in a 10-foot patch of water using an array of stakes and chicken wire. Unfortunately the beast soon broke free and vanished into the deeper sections of the lake.
A video of the event is said to exist but, naturally, it has been lost.
The hunt was on after that as spectators and hunters alike flocked to Churubusco in order to witness Oscar for themselves. Divers searched the lake to no avail, and as the Beast of Busco continued to dodge capture the public interest soon faded.
However interest sparked again in September of 1949 when Harris drained the 7 acre lake down to one acre using his tractor and a sump pump. Soon people began to flock back to the site in hopes catching another glimpse; on October 13th over 200 spectators got what they had been hoping for when the Beast of Busco reportedly came to the surface of the lake and carried off a fake duck which had been being used as a lure.
Harris’ pump soon died and the adoring public thinned once again. Since the sightings in 1949, no other reports have been filed. Some believe Oscar managed to escape through an underwater channel during the draining, while others believe it buried itself in the muck at the bottom of the lake in order to escape the draining and suffocated to death.
Regardless, an event known as Turtle Days has become a tradition in the town ever since 1950. A four day extravaganza of rides, games, food stands, merchant tents, an ending parade and a four-hour turtle race.