Today's article is the final installment of my 3-part feature concerning why I believe that many cryptozoological creatures - such as Bigfoot, lake monsters, the Dogman, and the Alien Big Cats of the U.K. - are actually supernatural in nature and should not be a part of Cryptozoology. Today, I'm focusing on the Chupacabra of Puerto Rico. It was in the mid-1990s that the phenomenon of the chupacabra exploded all across Puerto Rico. So far as can be determined, the menacing creature first surfaced in March 1995. That was when numerous animals were found slaughtered in the towns of Morovis (located in central Puerto Rico) and Orocovis, which is situated within the aforementioned La Cordillera Central mountain range. Locals were plunged into states of near-hysteria by the attacks, which reportedly left animals dead, with strange marks on their necks, and a distinct lack of blood in their corpses. Since many of the early attacks were on goats, the term, “chupacabra,” was created. It means, in Spanish, goat-sucker.
Vampires were on the loose; monstrous vampires. Reports of strange killings soon began to surface from other parts of the island. The creatures were clearly on the move. The death-rate increased even more. The population was on edge and the media had something new and sensational to report on. It was a turbulent and strange time. But, what, exactly, was responsible for all the killings? Yes, there were plenty of dead animals but, unfortunately, there was no solid, eyewitness testimony relative to the killers themselves. That is, until August 1995, when a woman named Madelyne Tolentino - who lived in Canovanas, which is close to the northeast coast of Puerto Rico - changed everything. Tolentino’s description of the creature she encountered, close to her mother’s home, was disturbing, to say the very least. It was a description eagerly embraced by the island’s media and by investigators of monsters and mysteries.
Tolentino told journalists and researchers that the creature was around three feet in height, bipedal, ran in a weird, hopping fashion, had large black eyes, bony fingers on each hand, overly long arms and legs, and a kind of feathery line running down its back. Or, it appeared to Tolentino to be a feathery line: a young boy employed by Tolentino’s husband claimed that he saw the beast up close and personal and maintained that the feathers were, in reality, sharp spines. The boy also said that the creature possessed a mouthful of vicious-looking fangs. Not only did the people know of the chupacabra and its predations, they also now knew what it looked like: something straight out of their worst nightmares. As the years progressed, so did the attacks. And so did the weird cases, that suggest the chupacabra are supernatural beasts.
Here are a couple of examples from my many trips to Puerto Rico. There is a longstanding story of a UFO crashing in the heart of Puerto Rico's El Yunque rain-forest in February 1984. I know that, because the basics of the account have reached me on three occasions over the past decade. It was early one morning when a large, circular-shaped object slammed into the ground, immediately after flying over the rain forest in a decidedly erratic fashion. To prevent people from learning the truth of the matter, a diversionary tactic was put into place that the UFO was a meteorite. Personnel from NASA, the U.S. Air Force, and the CIA were soon on the scene – in part, to scoop up the pummeled body-p arts of a couple of dead chupacabras, whose lives came to sudden and bloody ends when the alien craft hurtled violently into the forest at high speed. That’s how the story goes, anyway.
There is another reason why I am so intrigued by the potential UFO link to the chupacabra controversy. It's because of something that happened back in 2004. Shortly after my Proof Positive shoot was completed for the SyFy Channel, I spoke with a woman who had her own encounter with a UFO, but in a location where a chupacabra was seen only days later. As Rosario told me, it was early March 2000, and she was working in a grove near the foot of El Yunque where she picked plantains. Her attention was suddenly drawn to a deep, resonating hum, one that was coming from directly above her. Looking up, Rosario was startled to see a black, triangular-shaped object – about 25 to 35 feet in length - that was hovering overhead at a height estimated to be around 90 to 120 feet, and which had a glossy, shiny surface. Surprise and amazement turned to shock when a pencil-thin beam of light shot out of the base of the craft, fanned out, and enveloped Rosario in a pink glow.
For what almost seemed like an eternity, Rosario was rooted to the spot, while her mind was flooded with images of widespread nuclear destruction and environmental collapse in the Earth’s near-future. The final image was of a large, bald head with huge, black eyes and that closely resembled the alien face on the cover of Whitley Strieber’s 1987 best-selling book, Communion – which Rosario was inexplicably drawn to read in the immediate aftermath. Suddenly, the light retracted and the flying triangle rose into the sky, heading slowly towards the heart of the rain forest. Interestingly, in the wake of the encounter, Rosario developed an overwhelming interest in environmental issues, and quite literally overnight – after a lifetime of eating meat – became a staunch advocate of vegetarianism.
That was not all: three days later, and only a couple of hundred feet from where Rosario was working on that fateful day, two girls spotted a chupacabra of the bipedal, spiked and decidedly menacing kind. The beast spotted them, too. Evidently, however, it was a monster on a mission, since, after peering at them for a few moments it fell down on all-fours and bounded away into the heavy undergrowth. It was an event that – due to both the time-frame and the proximity – led Rosario to conclude the chupacabra was somehow linked to the UFO phenomenon. Me, too.