True in Some Sense
This is a smaller specimen of the groetnich (Neouranolophus zirpoli), an aggressive species of lungfish with ancestors found in the fossil record but long thought to be extinct. In 2009, it was discovered in the community of Terra Lake, Indiana, and thought to be responsible for some of the disappearances in the area. Despite the small size of its habitat, specimens can apparently reach large sizes, with adults as large as cars having been recorded.
Other than size, they are easily mistaken for snakehead despite only being distantly related. This is thought to be a primary reason regarding their previous lack of identification.
Despite this, scholars believe that they may be responsible for legends of lake monsters and the so-called “underwater panther” of the Southern Cult.
Credit for their discovery is typically given to Dr. Ebenezer Zirpoli, for whom the species is named.