The photograph shows a large and mysterious sea creature that washed up on the coast of Mexico in June 2022.
On June 1, 2022, the NetLiveMedia website published an article about a “mysterious 4-meter-long sea monster” that washed up on the coast of Mexico:
The strange beast was found by sun worshipers on Bonfil beach, in the city of Acapulco.
This is the hideous sea creature washed up on a beach that has baffled ocean experts. The strange beast, four meters long, was found by sun worshipers on Bonfil beach, in the southern city of Acapulco. west of the Mexican state of Guerrero.
The photograph bore a strong resemblance to 2008's "Montauk Monster," right down to the distinctive facial feature and folds in the creature's flesh:
As it turned out, the main image in this digital manipulation was used in several older marine anomaly hoaxes:
The photo was a fabrication that combined an image of a dead whale found in Chile in 2011 with an image of a giant squid that washed up on a Spanish beach in 2013:
This photograph has been reused multiple times for "sea creature" hoaxes:
A second image originated with a March 2022 stranding in Mexico involving what was initially an unidentified animal carcass, but the remains were later thought to be the decomposed head of a sperm whale. As is often the case, the tabloids covered the initial discovery extensively and did not follow up when the "mystery" finding was explained just days later.
Mexico's "4-meter-long mystery sea creature" was a fabrication, created by splicing a 2008 "Montauk Monster" photograph onto a 2011 image of a stranded whale.