Nov 03, 2022 I Nick Redfern

A Fistful of Flying Monsters That Are Stranger Than Mothman

Just about everyone has heard of the legendary creature known as Mothman - the red-eyed beast that created terror and mayhem in the 1960s at Point Pleasant, West Virginia. There are, however, a number of cases that fall into the "flying thing" category. And with that said, let's have a look at them. One might be forgiven for thinking that sightings of large, winged monsters only ever occur in the skies over large forests and jungles, and above remote mountains. Not so. In fact, far from it. In 1984, just such an unearthly beast was seen soaring over the capital city of the United Kingdom: London! The specific location was Brentford, a town situated within west London. The day on which all hell broke loose was hardly of the kind one might expect to associate with a monster. There were no dark and stormy skies, no thunder and lightning, and no howling winds. Instead, there was nothing but a warm, pleasant, sunny day in March. The man who kicked off the firestorm of controversy was Kevin Chippendale, who, at the time, was walking along Brentford’s Braemer Road. As he did so, Chippendale’s attention was drawn to something strange in the sky.

(Nick Redfern) Beware of flying monsters

It was some sort of large, flying animal. Not the kind of thing you see every day, to be sure. And in a decidedly synchronistic fashion, it all went down in the skies directly above a local pub called The Griffin. It was the imagery of a legendary griffin of ancient mythology that Chippendale most associated with the thing he briefly encountered. It was winged, fork-tailed, and sported mean-looking talons and a dog-like muzzle. Chippendale could do nothing but stare in awe. And in shock and terror, too. For a few weeks the creature provoked endless chatter and concern. And then? It was simply gone. As so many cryptid creatures do.

In 2003, the South American country of Chile was hit by a spate of reports of traumatic and terrifying encounters with flying monsters. One particularly fantastic incident occurred on the night of July 23. That was when three boys, Jonathan, Diego, and Carlos were having a sleepover at Diego’s grandfather’s house, which was situated near San Pedro de Atacama. They were woken from their sleep by the sound of scratching against the outside of the door to the yard. Tentatively, the brave trio got out of their beds and tiptoed to the door, carefully and quietly opened it, and peered into the darkness. To their eternal horror, they were confronted by a horrific-looking beast standing at a distance of around fifty feet and staring directly at them. It was humanoid in shape, beaked, and around five feet in height. It had large bat-style wings that extended to a combined length of around eleven feet, and talons instead of toes. And its head was crested. As for its color, it was black and shiny, almost wet-like. It wasn’t a local.

It’s interesting – and probably not coincidental – to note that a few days earlier a man by the name of Juan Acuqa contacted police to tell them of his trauma-filled, late night encounter with a pair of strange animals in the Chilean town of Parral. “They were both dog-faced and had wings,” Acuqa told the responding officers. And it wasn’t just a sighting that Acuqa had: as he walked home, the monsters attacked him out of the sky and out of the blue, something which forced Acuqa to leap into a nearby canal to try and shake them off. Fortunately, it worked; although, he was briefly hospitalized for gashes inflicted by the flying, nightmarish things.

Make mention of UFOs and it will likely conjure up imagery of flying saucers and diminutive, black-eyed, large headed ETs, and alien abductions. At least some UFOs, however, may have absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with visitors from far away solar-systems and galaxies. Welcome to the world of a man named Trevor James Constable. Having investigated the UFO phenomenon extensively, Constable penned two books on the subject. They Live in the Sky was published in 1958 and Sky Creatures followed two decades later. In deeply studying the UFO phenomenon, Constable came to a fascinating conclusion concerning what he believed to be the truth of the mystery surrounding flying saucers. Constable’s conclusion was that UFOs are not nuts-and-bolts craft from distant worlds, but living creatures that inhabit the highest levels of the Earth’s atmosphere. While many UFO investigators scoffed at Constable’s undeniably unique ideas, none could deny that his theory was well thought out. Describing them as “critters,” Constable believed the creatures to be unicellular and amoeba-like, but having metallic-like outer-shells, which gave them their flying saucer-style appearances. He also believed they varied in size from extremely small to lengths approaching half a mile – which, admittedly accords with what UFO witnesses tell us: the assumed alien craft that people have reported do indeed vary from a few inches to massive, so-called “mother-ships.”

(Nick Redfern) Big Bird!

It’s a story that sounds like the kind of thing one would read in the pages of something penned by horror maestro H.P. Lovecraft. Except for one key issue: it is one hundred percent fact. It was in the early hours of Friday, January 16, 2004, that a Mexican police officer was attacked by a monstrous, flying, hag-like creature in Guadalupe. All was normal until around 3:00 a.m., when all hell broke loose. Officer Leonardo Samaniego was on his routine patrol in the Colonia Valles de la Salla area when something truly nightmarish occurred. A black figure leapt out of the shadows of a large tree that stood by the side of the road and slowly turned towards the officer’s cruiser. This was nothing as down to earth as a large owl, however. Given the time and the darkness, Samaniego put his lights on high beam and directed the car at the thing in the road. The enormity of the situation – and the horrific nature of it – suddenly became all too clear. It was a hideous-looking woman dressed in black. And she was floating just above the ground.

For a few moments, Officer Samaniego could do nothing but stare in absolute terror as the dark-skinned woman’s lidless, black eyes stared directly at him. For a moment. Suddenly, the winged fiend pulled her cloak around her eyes, seemingly being affected by the bright light. She then flew at the vehicle, jumped onto the hood and tried to smash her way into the car via the windshield with her bony fists. Panicked Samaniego managed to put his car in reverse and hit the accelerator. As the vehicle shot away at a quick rate, the monster-woman clung onto the windshield, still intent on getting inside the car. Suddenly, the car slammed into a wall and came to a – quite literally – crashing halt. For a few moments, Samaniego covered his eyes. But it was to no avail: when he moved his hands away the hag was still there, on the hood, and staring malevolently at him. Such was the level of his fear, he actually fainted at the wheel. In minutes paramedics were on the scene. The beast had gone, and Samaniego soon recovered. Rather incredibly, it turned out that when Samaniego told his story to his superior officers, it prompted others in the department to admit that they, too, had seen the flying witch-woman in the dead of night, but had failed to report their encounters for fear of ridicule.

Mothman is a bizarre, flying creature that was made famous in the 2002 movie The Mothman Prophecies that starred Richard Gere and that, in turn, was based on the book of the same name penned by the late authority on just about everything paranormal and supernatural, John Keel. But, long before Mothman dared to surface from his strange and ominous lair in Point Pleasant, West Virginia in the mid-1960s, there was yet another mysterious winged thing that struck terror into the hearts and minds of those who were unfortunate enough to cross its terrible path. Certainly, one of the most bizarre of all the many and varied strange beings that haunts the lore and legend of Texas is that which became known, albeit very briefly, as the Houston Batman. The most famous encounter with the beast took place during the early morning hours of June 18, 1953. Given the fact that it was a hot and restless night, twenty three year old housewife Hilda Walker, and her neighbors, fourteen year old Judy Meyer and thirty three year old tool plant inspector Howard Phillips, were sitting on the porch of Walker’s home, located at 118 East Third Street in the city of Houston.

(Nick Redfern) I've put this photo of Mothman in the article, because it's just about how the Houston Batman looked

Walker stated of what happened next: “…twenty five feet away I saw a huge shadow across the lawn. I thought at first it was the magnified reflection of a big moth caught in the nearby street light. Then the shadow seemed to bounce upward into a pecan tree. We all looked up. That’s when we saw it.” She went on to describe the entity as being essentially man like in shape, sporting a pair of bat style wings, dressed in a black, tight-fitting outfit, and surrounded by an eerie, glowing haze. The trio all confirmed that the monstrous form stood about six and a half feet tall and also agreed that the strange glow engulfing him was yellow in color. The Batman vanished when the light slowly faded out and right about the time that Meyer issued an ear-splitting scream. Mrs. Walker also recalled the following: “Immediately afterwards, we heard a loud swoosh over the house tops across the street. It was like the white flash of a torpedo-shaped object… I’ve heard so much about flying saucer stories and I thought all those people telling the stories were crazy, but now I don’t know what to believe. I may be nuts, but I saw it, whatever it was… I sat there stupefied. I was amazed.”

Needwood Forest - of the county of Staffordshire, England - was a chase, or a royal forest, that was given to Henry III’s son, Edmund Crouchback, the 1st Earl of Lancaster, in 1266, and was owned by the Duchy of Lancaster until it passed into the possession of Henry IV. In the 1770s, Francis Noel Clarke Mundy published a collection of poetry called Needwood Forest which contained his own poem of the same name, one regarded as “one of the most beautiful local poems.” And much the same was said about the forest – which was an undeniably enchanting locale, filled with magic, myths and ancient lore, as forests so curiously often are. Today, however, things are sadly very different, and most of the ancient woodland is now, tragically, gone.

And, it is against this backdrop of ancient woodland and historic and huge old halls that something decidedly strange occurred back in the summer of 1937, when Alfred Tipton was but a ten-year-old boy. And like most adventurous kids, young Alfred enjoyed playing near Blithfield Hall, and in the Bagot’s Wood, with his friends: on weekends and during the seemingly-never-ending school-holidays. And, it was during the summer holidays of 1937 that something strange and monstrous was seen in that small, yet eerie, area of old woodland.According to Tipton, on one particular morning he and four of his friends had been playing in the woods for several hours and were taking a break, sitting on the warm, dry grass, and soaking in the sun. Suddenly, says Tipton, they heard a shrill screeching sound that was coming from the trees directly above them.

s they craned their necks to look directly upwards, the five pals were horrified by the sight of a large, black beast sitting on its haunches in one particularly tall and very old tree, and “shaking the branch up and down with its claws tightened around it.” But this was no mere large bird, however. Tipton says that “it reminded me of a devil: I still don’t forget things and that is what I say it looked like.” He adds that the creature peered down at the five of them for a few moments and then suddenly opened up its large and shiny wings, which were easily a combined twelve-feet across, and took to the skies in a fashion that could be accurately described as part-flying and part-gliding, before being forever lost to sight after perhaps 15 or 20 seconds or so. Significantly, when shown various pictures, photographs and drawings of a wide variety of large-winged creatures that either still roam our skies or did so in the past, the one that Tipton said most resembled the creature he and his mates saw was a pterodactyl. Of course, the pterodactyl is long extinct; however, Tipton is adamant that the beast the boys encountered was extremely similar to the legendary winged monster of the distant past. Keep your eyes in the skies!

Nick Redfern

Nick Redfern works full time as a writer, lecturer, and journalist. He writes about a wide range of unsolved mysteries, including Bigfoot, UFOs, the Loch Ness Monster, alien encounters, and government conspiracies. Nick has written 41 books, writes for Mysterious Universe and has appeared on numerous television shows on the The History Channel, National Geographic Channel and SyFy Channel.

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