The chupacabra is, of course, from Puerto Rico. The word "chupacabra" literally means "goat sucker" and it comes from this creature's M.O. of sucking the blood and life out of goats and other livestock and leaving their drained bodies as nothing but bags of skin and bones. I had heard the word before but I didn't know much about it until I went to Puerto Rico. One night my adopted Puerto Rican mother and I were sitting on her patio, drinking our nightly Bacardi and guayaba juice, when her granddaughter came running outside to avoid her bath. My mother said, "Nena, I wouldn't stay out here if I were you, we just heard the chupacabra in the bushes." The little girl froze for a moment, turned white, and then ran back inside the house. "What's a chupacabra?" I asked. She died out her cigarette and leaned in closely. "You don't know about the chupacabra?" she whispered. Lourdes was a dramatic storyteller, and I could tell this was going to be a good one. "Not really," I said. "Oh well you have to know. You never know when one might appear...."
So it goes that in the early 1990's, there was a secret underground military base near Fajardo in Puerto Rico. Scientists there were experimenting with mixing the DNA of aliens with other animals, like dogs, lizards, and humans. Apparently there was a security breach at the facility, and one of the "creatures" escaped. Newspapers began reporting the death of livestock across the island, and curiously, the animals were typically found with two large puncture wounds in its neck and its blood completely drained. Some blamed satanic cult rituals for these killings, but as more and more animals were found dead across the island, people began "seeing" the creatures responsible, which were soon named chupacabras. Some described it as dog-like, some more alien-like, some more human-like. This website describes the 3 forms it can take:
The second variety bears a resemblance to a wallaby or dog standing on its hind legs. It stands and hops as a kangaroo, and it has coarse fur with greyish facial hair. The head is similar to a dog's, and its mouth has large teeth.
Apparently the chupacabra could also swim, because he soon made his way off the island of Puerto Rico and through the Americas, including the US, Mexico, and almost all of Central and South America. Surprisingly it hasn't made its way up to Canada...YET. Mua ha ha. Lots of people have reported sightings or even tried to find the chupacabra, including one man who spent $6 million of his own money to do so. Yikes. But to this day, this elusive beast remains unexplained and unidentified, and continues to haunt the imaginations of Puerto Rican children and adults alike.
And now, apparently, the chupacabra has decided to terrorize the small city of Cuero, Texas, a town interestingly named after the Spanish word for "leather" or "animal hide." Smells like a conspiracy to me! Although Cuero is also known, apparently, as the unofficial "turkey capital of the world" with their school mascot known as "the Gobblers," so truth be told the townsfolk might just be bored and need something to do...