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The Kappa is an apparition that dwells in rivers and swamps. The name Kappa was originally used throughout the Kanto area, and it is said that the name spread all over the country. There are many other names by which the Kappa is known. These include Medochi (in Aomori) and Mizushi (in the Noto area).
The Kappa has a child-like appearance and a bobbed hair style. On top of its head there is a plate of water which gives it amazing strength. Depending on the area you are in, the Kappa can appear with a shell on its back, just like a turtle. Its favorite food is cucumber.
The following is a famous story about how the Kappa originated.
A long time ago, a well-known carpenter made a straw doll. He gave this straw doll a soul and set it to work as a builder. When the task was completed, the carpenter threw the doll away, into the river. This is said to be how the Kappa originated.

Favorite things to eat --- cucumber, fish
Least favorite things --- ironware, deer antlers, saliva

Special Features of Kappa

@ Shell
A Webbed hands and feet
B Elastic arms
C Plate (When there is water in this plate, the Kappa has amazing strength.)
D A tapering mouth