The Chupacabra is a legendary cryptid, which means it is an animal whose existence cannot be proven. Chupacabra, in Latin American popular legend, is a monstrous creature that attacks animals and consumes their blood. The name is derived from the Spanish words chupar ("to suck") and cabra ("goat").
Early reports described a creature that stood upright and resembled a large reptilian kangaroo with huge red eyes.
The chupacabra recently got enlisted with vampires in the bestiary of bloodsucking creatures. Chupacabras were first reported in 1995 in Puerto Rico. The creatures were accused of attacks on goats, sheep, and other domestic animals, and they supposedly left uneaten carcasses - drained empty of blood.
Different species of the chupacabra were reported from places they had been previously reported from. But these chupacabras were smaller and stood upon four feet. They were generally canine in appearance but hairless. Actual specimens were produced, but they were identified by biologists as coyotes, dogs, or canine hybrids. The animals owed their strange appearance to hair loss resulting from mange, an infestation of the mite Sarcoptes scabies. It was suggested that the canines attacked livestock because the debilitating effects of the infestation put wild prey out of their reach.
While descriptions of the blood-sucking beast vary greatly, most describe it as a gray, lizard-like creature about three to four feet tall that walks upright on its muscular hind legs, similar to an archetypical alien. It reportedly has large eyes, fangs and a forked tongue with a row of sharp quills running down its back. However, others describe the monster as more like a giant, vicious kangaroo or disfigured coyote.
A five-year investigation by Benjamin Radford, documented in his 2011 book Tracking the Chupacabra, concluded that the description given by the original eyewitness in Puerto Rico, Madelyne Tolentino, was based on the creature Sil - from the 1995 science-fiction horror film Species. The alien creature Sil is nearly identical to Tolentino's chupacabra eyewitness account, and she had seen the movie before her report.
The chupacabra has two origin stories invoked to help explain its sudden appearance. The first is that the creature is extra-terrestrial brought to Earth by visiting aliens; the second is that the chupacabra is an escaped entity created in a top-secret US government genetics laboratory experiment gone wrong, which is essentially a classic conspiracy-laden Frankenstein scenario. Not coincidentally, these two origin stories are identical to those of Sil, a chupacabra-like monster in the film Species.
Another "legendary" claim to a natural history of the chupacabra comes from Bob Curran in his book Vampires: A Field Guide to the Creatures That Stalk the Night. He describes early explorer Francisco Vázquez de Coronado's encounter with the goatsucker.
In addition, reports of blood-sucking by chupacabras were never confirmed by a necropsy, the only way to conclude that the animal was drained of blood. An analysis by a veterinarian of 300 reported victims of the chupacabra found that they had not been bled dry.
Radford divided the chupacabra reports into two categories - the reports from Puerto Rico and Latin America where animals were attacked and blood was supposedly extracted, and the reports in the United States speak of mammals, mostly dogs and coyotes with mange, that people call "chupacabra" due to their unusual appearance.
While reports of chupacabra are relatively new, the phenomenon dates back to the 1970s when Puerto Rican legend tales of El Vampiro de Moca, a supposed livestock-killing vampire in the small town of Moca. Whether chupacabras exist or not, reports of blood-drain murdered livestock persist. And to date, no satisfactory predator has been caught.