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Chupacabras Attack!

buschmasterbuschmaster Member Posts: 14,255 ✭✭✭
edited December 2007 in General Discussion
heir first known attacks were in March of 1995 in Puerto Rico. Eight sheep were discovered dead, each completely drained of blood. Investigators found three strange puncture wounds in the chests of the animals. Despite the odd circumstances, authorities could only attribute the killings to a known predator - a fox, perhaps. Others, however, recognized the similarities in these deaths to the enigmatic cattle mutilations which had been taking place in the American southwest with increasing regularity. Was there a connection?

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Five months later, however, the attacks intensified and became more bizarre than any cattle mutilation. In August, 1995, as many as 150 farm animals and pets were killed by a mysterious predator in and around the Puerto Rican town of Can?vanas. In most cases, like the sheep, the animals were drained of blood through small holes. A definite pattern of unexplained killing had developed. Several of the animal victims were goats, which inspired the locals to christen the killer, el chupacabras - the "goat sucker." To this day, its rampage of gruesome slayings has continued and spread to many parts of the world, including the United States, Mexico, even as far away as Australia.

Yet after three years and hundreds of killings, chupacabras has eluded capture. Several sightings have been claimed, and its description fits no biological classification - and its killing methods puzzle forensic experts. If eyewitnesses can be believed, and until the experts can deliver a plausible explanation for the bizarre deaths, chupacabras remains a real modern mystery.

The Description

In Can?vanas, about 30 citizens claimed to have seen the chupacabras, swearing that it had swooped down from the sky and leapt over treetops. It wasn't until November, 19, 1995 that a detailed description of chupacabras came from an eyewitness. On that autumn night in Puerto Rico, the creature struck again. Farmers awoke to a horrifying scene: dozens of turkeys, rabbits, goats, cats, dogs, horses and cows... dead, with no explainable cause. Just the mysterious markings left by the blood-drinking chupacabras. But in the north-central city of Caguas, a startled homeowner caught the world's first fleeting glimpse of the goat sucker. Described as having huge red eyes and hairy arms, the creature allegedly broke into the bedroom of the house through a window, tore apart a child's stuffed Teddy bear, and left a puddle of slime and a single piece of rancid meat on the windowsill before disappearing.

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Through the end of 1995, chupacabras had been blamed for more than 1,000 mysterious animals deaths - all resulting from blood loss through one or more puncture wounds. In that time, several more eyewitnesses came forward, consistently describing the the creature as being monkey-like, but having no tail. They characterized it has having large oval red eyes that sometimes glowed, gray skin, a long snake-like tongue, fangs, and long spinal quills that may double as wings. Those who saw it say chupacabras stands between four and five feet tall, hops like a kangaroo, and leaves a foul, sulfur-like stench. At the site of some deaths, unidentified three-toed tracks were found. Zoologists could think of no known animal that adequately fits this strange portrait.

Was the chupacabras the figment of agitated imaginations? Could the witnesses have mistaken a fox or a panther for this weird creature? Was it, after all, just a superstition? In any case, the killings continued. In March, 1996, chupacabras struck for the first time in the United States. It had somehow crossed the Caribbean and slain 40 animals in a rural area northwest of Miami, Florida. On May 2, a report came from the Rio Grande Valley in southern Texas: a six-year-old pet goat was found dead with the unmistakable puncture wounds of chupacabras. On that same day, the creature appeared further south in Juarez, Mexico, where it preyed on dogs and other small mammals. More witnesses verified chupacabras' description: the row of spikes or feather-like projections running down its spine; the way it stands upright on three-toed feet with its forearms suspended at chest level, not unlike a kangaroo; its large sometimes glowing eyes. The next day, May 3, in northern Mexico, the village of Calderon is terrorized by a giant "bat-like" creature that feasted on the blood of several goats. Like a scene out of Frankenstein, farmers formed vigilante groups to try and stop the monster, but without success. Throughout May, reports came in from all over Mexico where chupacabras left dead cows, sheep, and rams in its bloody wake.

Theories

Although the eyewitness accounts make it extremely difficult to categorize the creature as any known predator, some authorities have ventured that chupacabras may actually be a large vampire bat. The world's three species of blood-sucking bats live predominantly in the warm climates of Latin America where most of the attacks have occurred. But vampire bats do not directly kill their victims; they stealthily creep up on their sleeping prey, make painless incisions, and lap up the dripping blood. Although they can infect their victims with rabies, they by no means drain even small animals of all their blood.

Other proffered theories for the chupacabras include that is an extraterrestrial, a demon, a living dinosaur of some kind, some weird vampire kangaroo, or a genetic mutation that has somehow escaped from a secret government laboratory experiment. They're pretty far-out ideas, but no stranger than the thing itself. The idea receiving the most credence from authorities is that the attacks are made by hungry, stray dogs. Yet it's an odd hungry dog indeed that doesn't eat its victims, but merely lacerates them with its canine teeth and drinks their blood.

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Still on the Prowl

Whatever it is, chupacabras' appetite for blood has not been satisfied. From 1996 through 1998, reports of their ghastly attacks continued to make their way into the press. Sightings were made in the Dominican Republic, Tucson, Arizona, and continued on the island of Puerto Rico. Hardly a month goes by without an assault on some helpless animals by the chupacabras:

In November, 1996, a Mexican rancher near San Antonio, Texas, claimed to have captured the chupacabras with a coyote trap - and produced the photographs to prove it. (This story and photos used to be online, but have sinced become unavailable.) The rancher had set the trap to capture whatever was killing his goats, chickens, and a donkey. What he caught was something he could not recognize. Allegedly, the body of the strange creature was taken to a major Texas university for identification, although this cannot be verified.
In November, 1997, chupacabras was back in its original stomping grounds where it killed two goats, bled another dry, and made off with a small kid from a small farm near Lo?za, Puerto Rico. Investigating police believe that attack took place around 2 a.m., about the time a farm hand heard the "flutter of wings" and saw frightened horses and cows running "as if the devil were in pursuit."
On the night of November 12, 1997, near Perth, Australia, two friends investigating what sounded like the squealing of a wild pig, encountered a creature with large, piercing red eyes, a body covered with stringy matted hair, large teeth, and a distinctive sulfur-like odor. "It was about three feet high when on all fours," said the witness, "and about five feet when trying to stand up. In its mouth was part of a kangaroo. Within a split second, it leapt straight up - dinner and all - as if it had springs for legs."
Thirty-four hogs were found dead with the trademark puncture marks on November 17, 1997, near Aricibo, Puerto Rico. The pigs were being raised by inmates of the Sabana Hoyos prison who had planned to feast on the animals for Christmas dinner.
Near Hesperia in Southern California, a creature matching the description of the "goat sucker" attacked another pig in December, 1997. "I encountered something trying to get to my pig that was unbelievable," said the owner. "When I came around the corner, it stopped and looked up at me. My dogs seemed to be afraid of it. It then disappeared into the bushes."
On January 26, 1998, chupacabras was blamed for the mutilation of three cats at the home of Melvin Rosado in La Parguera, Puerto Rico. According the report, "one of the cats had its skin separated by a precise, bloodless incision."
It would be easier to discount the all of these accounts as peculiar attacks by a variety of different predators if it weren't for the consistent eyewitness descriptions of the chupacabras. Is it just possible that this is some kind of creature, like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster, that has not yet been classified by science? Or is it just another myth perpetuated by fanciful human imagination? Whatever it is, I'll continue to bring you updates on this ongoing and bloody mystery.

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