Africa, the black continent and home of 54 countries housing a population of over 1 billion people are shrouded in an air of quite interesting and somewhat puzzling mysteries. This is no wild guess as Africa is blessed with an estimate of 3,000 tribes with a wide range of customs, norms, and beliefs, so some oddity is entirely expected. While Africa may seem quite simple in terms of development, it’s weird and intriguing facts are quite elusive even to the complex of minds. Here is a list of five bizarre facts about Africa.
The Goliath Frog
Located in Cameroon and Equatorial Guinea is the world’s most abundant species of frog called the goliath frog. It can grow up to 32cm (12.6 inches) in length with legs excluded and weigh up to 7.17 Ib. Its legs can extend up to 1 foot when stretched. Surprisingly for this frog, its egg size is about the same size as those of other frogs which is quite unusual despite its humungous size. They are almost at the point of extinction.
The Lucky Rabbit’s Foot
In Tunisia, it is widely believed that a rabbit’s foot brings good luck to its owner (but not so much luck for the rabbit). Origin traces back to the pre-Celtic tradition where adolescents who wanted to be hunters went about to hunt rabbits as an introduction to apprenticeship and if successful would be awarded one hind foot of the rabbit in a ceremony that welcomed them into manhood into the clan.
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Fairy Circles (Circles Of Life & Death)
Located in the Namib Desert in southern Africa are thousands of mysterious barren patches of land several meters wide known as “fairy circles.” Scientists had earlier suggested occurrences as a result of radioactive soil or UFOs while local myth believes in the presence of a dragon beneath the earth that burns the vegetation. More recent research has concluded activities of sand termites, but excavations haven’t found any termite nest underneath the ground.
In Tanzania, the government has ruled out the taking of public properties and social amenities such as government buildings, bridges, roads, etc. and military personnel as illegal. Another bizarre fact in Tanzania exists among the Masaai people who believe that taking their picture is stealing their souls. Also in Tanzania, you are advised to ask for permission if you intend to take any pictures of people’s possessions. They even go as far as requesting money from you to get a shot of their possession.
The Evil Eye
Popular in Northern and Western Africa is the” evil eye.” The evil eye is a curse cast by a malevolent glare, usually given to an unsuspecting person. It is believed to cause great misfortune or injury to its victim. Talismans which protect against the evil eye are also called “evil eyes.” Other protective measures include charms and decorations with eye-like symbols known as “nazars” which are used to ward off the evil eye.
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