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The Chupacabra

I travel across the great state of Texas as least once a year, on my way to see my son at Camp Pendleton. Last year, I saw something strange crossing a field, and stopped my car to get out and get a better look. We stared at each other for what seemed to be several minutes, before he continued on his way. Although I thought of the recent Chupacubra sightings in the state, the creature was too far away for me to identify it. I just know that it appeared to have no hair, and its eyes were glowing.

The Chupacabra (from Spanish chupar “to suck” and cabra “goat”) was first believed to be sighted in Puerto Rico in 1995. Spotted thousands of times since then, it has been seen as far north as Maine, and as far south as Chile. In 2006, the Chupacabra was even sighted in central Russia, reportedly killing and draining the blood of dozens of turkeys and sheep.

Although the descriptions vary, what comes to mind when reading about the creature’s pronounced eye sockets, humongous fangs, sharp claws, glowing slanted red eyes, forked tongue, and bat-like wings, is the bloodsucking vampire. It has a row of spikes or quills down the length of its back. It is usually described as hairless with leathery or scaly spotted skin the color of moldy iron. This cryptid is said to be from three to five and a half foot tall, and travels extremely fast by hopping or running. It hisses and screeches when startled (similar to the sounds a vampire makes when exposed to sunlight), and has been said to leave behind the stench of sulfur.

Some accounts of the monster’s description include immense dark wings, giving it the ability to fly. Many witnesses compare it to an alien, or even a dinosaur, because its shape is similar to that of a “Grey,” with its “slit” for a mouth and only tiny holes for a nose. Reports vary as to a tail. Some descriptions include an elongated jaw, and a covering of hair on the body.

The attack of the Chupacabra is very rapid, with complete exsanguination of the victim through one, two, and sometimes three holes, of various sizes. There have also been instances reported of the victim’s organs being sucked out through the holes. There is speculation that the beast injects some kind of toxin that totally immobilizes the victim, before sucking out the blood. It is also theorized that the punctures are patterned in such a manner that death is instantaneous.

Other reports say that the marks are more like clearly defined bites, usually around the softer tissues of the body. A slimy substance is left behind at the wound.

In addition to chickens and sheep, the Chupacabra preys on cows, horses, cats, rabbits, turkeys, geese, and ducks. A favorite delicacy is goat meat.
The Chupacabra usually prefers to hunt at night as bright lights are said to bother the beast. It has its brazen moments, though, as it has been seen walking in broad daylight. A young college student in Puerto Rico saw it tear apart the family goat one afternoon.

The Chupacabra was first reported and named in 1995, when it killed eight sheep in Puerto Rico. There wasn’t a drop of blood left in any of the animals, and they each had three puncture wounds in their chest.In November of that year, a woman said a Chupacabra stuck its clawed hand through her window, grabbed a teddy bear, and shredded it to pieces. Hundreds of attacks were reported over the next few months, and Civil Defense officials were called in to investigate the death of farm animals with “distinctive puncture wounds,” on their bloodless bodies. El Chupacabra is blamed for the deaths of more than one thousand animals in a one year period. The animals are always left with odd puncture wounds, and no blood remaining in their bodies.

In 1996, in the Sweetwater district of Miami, Florida, two ranchers lost a total of 69 animals in a single night. The slaughter was witnessed by an elderly woman who talked about the incident publicly.

Motocross Racer Kolt Jarrett spotted an odd creature with “spikes down its back,” and a “weird shaped head” in November of 2005, at th Cycle Ranch Motocross Park in Floresville, Texas. Jarrett thinks he had an encounter with the Chupacabra.

The origin of the Chupacabra is debated among researchers and cryptozoologists. There is always the alien theory. That seems to pop up with most cryptids. Some of the Puerto Rican people believe that the creature might be the result of some type of genetic experiment conducted by the United States government in the El Yunque mountain area.

In San Paulo and Rio, locals believe the Chupacabra steals children in the poor areas of town, draining their blood, and leaving the bodies in dirty alleys. In Mexico City, there have been reports of the beast hunting schoolchildren, and in May of 1996, a nurse reported that her arm had been severed by a Chupacabra. A farm boy from Jalisco claimed to have been attacked by the creature, and had fang marks on his body.

This cryptid is considered to be dangerous. An article in the June 30, 1996-edition of the Advocate Herald, entitled Chupacabra Sightings in California, warned people in the San Diego area to call local authorities immediately if encountering the creature. “Do not approach it and move indoors as quickly and quietly as possible.”

El Chupacabra has a very strong sense of smell. Chances are, if you are brave enough to hunt the mysterious beast, you will instead, find yourself being stalked by the Chupacabra.

References/Sources/Additional Information and Reading:

Blackman, W. Haden. The Field Guide to North American Monsters. NY: Three Rivers Press, 1998.
Coghlan, Ronan. A Dictionary of Cryptozoology. Bangor: Xiphos Books, 2004.
Coghlan, Ronan. Further Cryptoology. Bangor: Xiphos Books, 2007.
Coleman, Jerry D. More Strange Highways. Illinois: Whitechapel Productions Press, 2006.
Coleman, Loren and Jerome Clark. Cryptozoology A to Z. NY: Fireside, 1999.
Monsterquest Episode 208: Chupacabra

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