Takekiri danuki (raccoon dog cutting bamboo) (竹伐狸)

Some people insist the sound was not auditory hallucination or hallucinatory image because sometimes, dozens of people heard the sound at the same time. The sound is considered to be the belly drums of raccoon dogs or a music produced by the mountain god, but modern scientists presume that it is a kind of meteorological phenomenon.

"Takekiri danuki" (raccoon dog cutting bamboo) is a spirit of a raccoon dog handed down in Otoshi, Hozu-mura Village, Minamikuwata County, Kyoto Prefecture (present-day, Kameoka City).

They are old raccoon dogs living in bamboo groves and fool people by making sound of cutting bamboo. At night, a strange sound, 'chon chon', like a sound of cutting branches of bamboo is heard, and then, it changes into a creaky sound, 'ki ki', like a sound of cutting its base. Finally, a sound of the bamboo crashing, 'zaza' is heard. After the break of dawn, people go to the bamboo grove and find that there are no signs of cutting bamboo.

It is said that such bizarre incidents occurred not only in Kyoto but also in the deep mountains of Hyogo Prefecture or Tottori Prefecture. In Atago, Iwata County (present-day Tenryu Ward, Hamamatsu City), Shizuoka Prefecture, such sounds are called 'yamabayashi'.(festival music played by flute, drums and bells in the mountain). It is also said that sound of 'kagurabayashi' (a musical sound of flute and drums) is heard from the deep mountains where no one is living.

[Original Japanese]