Skeptoid PodcastSkeptoid on Facebook   Skeptoid on Twitter   Skeptoid on Stitcher   iTunes   Google Play

Members Portal

Store

 

Get a Free Book

 

SKEPTOID BLOG:

Texas "Chupacabra" Pending DNA Analysis

by Guy McCardle

July 22, 2011

Share Tweet Reddit

Donate A thirteen year old Texas boy last Sunday shot what he claimed to be a "chupacabra" near his home in LaSalle. Carter Pope put three rounds into the legendary vampire beast as it walked across an open field. The animal was not attacking anyone or anything nor was it being a nuisance. The four-legged creature supposedly looked somewhat like a dog, but not exactly. "It had no hair at all on it," he told local media. "Its back legs were shriveled up. I honestly think it's a chupacabra."

Pope's father sent tissue samples to a lab for DNA analysis and the family is eagerly awaiting results. The majority of previous tissue samples of supposed "chupacabras" ended up being identified as members of the canid family (a group containing dogs, foxes and coyotes). For those not already in the know, the name "chupacabra" means "goat sucker" in Spanish. They have been reputed to suck the blood out of small animals, such a chickens and goats. Most sightings report the animal as having four legs, being dog-like and hairless (or nearly hairless).

Past Texan "chupacabras" have been identified mostly as domestic dogs or coyotes. There was one raccoon. Their hairless state was due to the mite caused skin disease called sarcoptic mange. Some sightings may have been of the naturally hairless Mexican dog, the Xolo.

Pope may end up finding himself in trouble with the law because of his non-provoked shooting. The boy was said to have been in legal possession of the firearm, but that doesn't give him the right to blast away at whatever he wants to. Especially since the animal was not acting in a threatening manner. If it turns out that he shot a dog, he could be charged with a felony.

Of course no one outside of his community would have ever heard of this shooting had the boy not cried "chupacabra". That ups the interest level by orders of magnitude. Regarding the unknown animal, Pope's father is recorded as saying "I know it looks like nothing I have ever personally seen before." I suppose the take away lesson from all of this is that if you don't recognize something it doesn't necessarily mean it is mysterious or needs killin'. If I'm mistaken and science really does prove this to be a "chupacabra", I'll eat my Stetson.

by Guy McCardle

Share Tweet Reddit

@Skeptoid Media, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit

 

 

 

Donate