Mexico's bloodsucker: myth or reality?


May 15, 1996
Web posted at: 8:00 a.m. EDT (1200 GMT)

From Correspondent Lucia Newman

MEXICO CITY, Mexico (CNN) -- Is it a mutant vampire? Is it an extra-terrestrial? Or is it simply a figment of someone's overactive imagination? (595K QuickTime movie)

The chupacabra defies definition, but several strange and unexplained incidents in Mexico are causing locals to believe the creature is more than just a myth.


Legend has it that the chupacabra -- Spanish for "goat sucker" -- has fiery eyes and resembles a cross between a giant dog and a lizard. The creature is said to walk upright on two feet, sink its fangs into its victims and kill them by drinking their blood.

The creature has been accused of killing goats, sheep and chickens and generally terrorizing Mexico's countryside.

"It's horrible because we don't know what it is," said a woman. "I don't think its a coyote or a dog like officials say because a dog can't kill ten goats with a single blow."

Those who claim to have seen it say the goatsucker is big and hairy with wings, long fangs, and legs like a kangaroo.

dead goat

In the north of Mexico, terrified peasants have tried to hunt the chupacabra with the help of police, but even a handsome reward hasn't been sufficient bring about the capture or a photograph the mysterious creature.

This goatsucker is also being blamed for at least one broken marriage: A man has demanded a divorce from his wife after failing to believe her story that the marks on her neck were caused by the goatsucker.

Authorities say tests on goat victims indicate the so-called goatsucker is probably a wolf or coyote. But that's done nothing to abate the goatsucker fever sweeping Mexico.


Goatsucker T-shirts, some depicting former president Carlos Salinas as the creature, are flooding the markets.

Some say the chupacabra has been invented by the government to draw attention away from Mexico's acute economic crisis.

"The goatsucker is the government, because the people are suffering horribly from poverty," one woman said.

The real identity of the goatsucker may never be known. But in times of crisis and stress, it's at least a distraction.

Related story:

Related site:


Send us your comments.
Selected responses are posted daily.


Copyright © 1996 Cable News Network, Inc.
External sites are not endorsed by CNN Interactive.