On this day in 1978 lived a monster on Parkes Way, frightening motorists as they caught glimpses of it while passing by during what they thought would be a peaceful trip.
So concerned were those who saw the black, bedraggled and greasy creature that every day and night several calls were made to the Department of the Capital Territory to alert it of the monster.
Coranderrk Pool was the creature's choice of home - a pond that caught storm water and trapped waste which ran off from central Canberra's service stations. The monster seemed to particularly enjoy it for that reason, splashing around in the oil and sludge which built up in the pool, further worsening its appearance.
After several worried calls from the public, the Department of the Capital Territory sent rangers to the pool and it was revealed the source of such terror on Parkes Way was merely a grubby pelican.
One of the department's heads said the pelican was content to sit in the pool, even though rangers had visited many times to "rescue" the bird.
"It loves sitting in the oil and slush," he said.
"It is having a lovely time and apparently eats the dubious morsels in the water there."
The department's public relations officer said: "It is not an ACT pelican, obviously. Pelicans here don't like dirty water.
"This one revels in getting under this dirty sludge and apparently is eating it. It's the scruffiest pelican our officers have ever seen - but possibly the happiest."
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.