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LOl, it's a shaved dog!!!







CUERO, Texas - Phylis Canion lived in Africa for four years. She's been a hunter all her life and has the mounted heads of a zebra and other exotic animals in her house to prove it. But the roadkill she found last month outside her ranch was a new one even for her, worth putting in a freezer hidden from curious onlookers: Canion believes she may have the head of the mythical, bloodsucking chupacabra.

It is one ugly creature," Canion said, holding the head of the mammal, which has big ears, large fanged teeth and grayish-blue, mostly hairless skin.

Canion and some of her neighbors discovered the 40-pound bodies of three of the animals over four days in July outside her ranch in Cuero, 80 miles southeast of San Antonio. Canion said she saved the head of the one she found so she can get to get to the bottom of its ancestry through DNA testing and then mount it for posterity.

She suspects, as have many rural denizens over the years, that a chupacabra may have killed as many as 26 of her chickens in the past couple of years.

"I've seen a lot of nasty stuff. I've never seen anything like this," she said.

What tipped Canion to the possibility that this was no ugly coyote, but perhaps the vampire-like beast, is that the chickens weren't eaten or carried off — all the blood was drained from them, she said.

Chupacabra means "goat sucker" in Spanish, and it is said to have originated in Latin America, specifically Puerto Rico and Mexico.

Canion thinks recent heavy rains ran them right out of their dens.

"I think it could have wolf in it," Canion said. "It has to be a cross between two or three different things."

She said the finding has captured the imagination of locals, just like purported sightings of Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster have elsewhere.

But what folks are calling a chupacabra is probably just a strange breed of dog, said veterinarian Travis Schaar of the Main Street Animal Hospital in nearby Victoria.

"I'm not going to tell you that's not a chupacabra. I just think in my opinion a chupacabra is a dog," said Schaar, who has seen Canion's find.

The "chupacabras" could have all been part of a mutated litter of dogs, or they may be a new kind of mutt, he said.

As for the bloodsucking, Schaar said that this particular canine may simply have a preference for blood, letting its prey bleed out and licking it up.

Chupacabra or not, the discovery has spawned a local and international craze. Canion has started selling T-shirts that read: "2007, The Summer of the Chupacabra, Cuero, Texas," accompanied by a caricature of the creature. The $5 shirts have gone all over the world, including Japan, Australia and Brunei. Schaar also said he has one.

"If everyone has a fun time with it, we'll keep doing it," she said. "It's good for Cuero."
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Wish I had a chubacabra, I would only charge $4 for a tshirt! She must be raking it in, cause of exposure through the news article.
 

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Well it turns out that DNA testing showed that it's a coyote with some sort of hair loss.

SAN MARCOS, Texas - The results are in: The ugly, big-eared animal found this summer in Cuero is not the mythical bloodsucking chupacabra. It's just a plain old coyote.

Biologists at Texas State University announced Thursday night that they had identified the hairless doglike creature.

San Antonio television station KENS provided a tissue sample from the animal for testing.

"The DNA sequence is a virtually identical match to DNA from the coyote (Canis latrans)," bioligist Mike Forstner said in a written statement. "This is probably the answer a lot of folks thought might be the outcome. I, myself, really thought it was a domestic dog, but the Cuero Chupacabra is a Texas Coyote."

Phylis Canion and some of her neighbors discovered the 40-pound bodies of three of the animals over four days in July outside her ranch in Cuero, 90 miles southeast of San Antonio. Canion said she saved the head of the one she found so she could get to get to the bottom of its ancestry through DNA testing and then mount it for posterity.

Forstner said the testing provided an opportunity to demonstrate how science answers questions.

Chupacabra means "goat sucker" in Spanish, and it is said to have originated in Latin America, specifically Puerto Rico and Mexico.

"This is fun, not scary, but if people are worried about the chupacabra, it is probably even more important that we explain the mystery," he said. "Folks can fear what they don't understand, and a big part of the goal in science is to explain the natural world."

He said additional skin samples have been taken to try to determine the cause of the animal's hair loss.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071102/ap_on_sc/mythical_chupacabra
 
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