A shachihoko is an imaginary sea animal with the body of a fish and the head of a tiger. Ancient people believed that the animal would save the building from fire.
The imaginary animals on Matsue Castle are made of wood covered with bronze. They are 2.08m tall and that means they are the largest wooden Shachihoko in Japan.
The picture below shows old Shachihokos which replaced at Matsue Castle several decades ago.