A number of series have previously dealt with the subject of the Chupacabra, and Monsters and Mysteries Unsolved in their S1/Ep07 episode also gave the topic a go. Attacks of the “goat sucker” reportedly first started in Puerto Rico in the mid-1990’s. Since that time, reports of the creature have come from Cuero, Texas where rancher Phyllis Canion found exsanguinated chickens and reported sighting a hairless animal with a long snout and a strange gait. An area sheriff in August of 2008 also recorded a strange creature on his dash cam that matched that description. Other ranchers have found dead cattle on their ranches, and one had a video of a canid-like animal with short front legs, a long snout, and gray hairless skin.
Cryptozoologist Ken Gerhard has interviewed eyewitnesses of the creature, and examined the rotting remains of an unidentified animal hit by a car; some people seem to have all of the fun at their jobs! This corpse was taken to Texas Tech, where it was examined by anthropologist Eileen Johnson, who pronounced it neither a wolf nor a dog, and found it to be more like a coyote.
In that a living specimen can yield better and more complete information, a group assisted by a vet was covered in their efforts to hunt and trap a Chupacabra at night. They set up motion camera traps baited with rotted deer meat and a hapless living chicken. The motion detector camera detected nothing unknown, and even the chicken survived to see the morning.
Now a neighbor of the previously mentioned rancher Phyllis Canion conveniently had another carcass of an unidentified canid, and part of its tongue was sent in for DNA testing while the bulk of the carcass was taken to a vet. The biologist who tested the sample’s DNA found that the animal was a coyote/wolf hybrid.
Other far out theories were also touched on, including the legend as mentioned by writer Nick Redfern that the Chupacabra was some kind of alien creature. A supposed connection between the Chupacabra and UFO sightings was brought up. A more mundane explanation was also offered that the Chupacabra was actually a case of mistaken identify, with a Rhesus monkey on the lam thought to be the cryptid. Dr. Robert Baker, a wildlife geneticist, seemed skeptical of the notion that the Chupacabra was capable of living on blood, saying that they would have to have specialized organs to accomplish this.
As with other unidentified and sought after but elusive creatures, people want to believe in them. For some, the mystery lives on…