The mystery animal was ghostly white and hairless, its neck bloated out of proportion with the rest of its limp body.
When Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) officials received a picture of the roadkill from Alexandria, Minn., this week, it wasn't clear what it was.
There were five front toes with long nails, so it most likely wasn't a dog. Several employees, working off the picture, concluded it was a badger.
"If you look at the picture, it is weird-looking," said Jason Abraham, a fur-bearer specialist with the DNR. "If there were four or five of these found on the road, we might have a bit more interest."
The badger, assuming that's what it was, probably lost its hair during the decomposition process, Abraham said. The animal most likely lived in Minnesota, although the species is more commonly found in Wisconsin.
The badger's picture was placed on Facebook, which gave the critter a little notoriety in the Alexandria area.
In 2006, residents of the North Shore were perplexed by a hairless animal roaming the woods. It turned out to be a timberwolf with mange.