Members of terror group Boko Haram have allegedly been arrested in Nigeria after fleeing a forest to escape deadly bites from "mystical bees" and "mysterious snakes".
According to Nigerian newspaper Vanguard, the captured insurgents claimed the creatures -- possessed by ghosts -- had killed many Boko Haram members.
"We were told that the aggrieved people who had suffered from our deadly mission -- including the ghosts of some of those we killed -- are the ones turning into the snake and bees," one militant told Vanguard. "Our leaders fled, too."
Boko Haram made headlines worldwide for the kidnappings of 220 schoolgirls in Chibok, Borno State, last April.
The girls are being allegedly smuggled to Cameroon and Chad and sold as brides to militants for 2,000 naira (£7). Others are being forced to marry their abductors.
Some Boko Haram members believe the insects and reptiles are hunting the insurgents to punish them for the mass abduction.
"We decided to flee when almost all our comrades are leaving the Sambisa [Forest] because of constant attacks by snakes and bees, which we were told was as a result of Chibok abducted schoolgirls," one insurgent said.
Boko Haram, which fights against the Westernisation of Nigeria and wants to establish an Islamic state, abducted 60 more women and girls and 31 boys in Kummabza village, Borno State, in June.
The militants, currently led by Abubakar Shekau, carry out deadly attacks in public places including schools, churches and police stations.
Violence linked to the Boko Haram insurgency has resulted in an estimated 10,000 deaths between 2002 and 2013.