Blood-sucking chupacabra to abominable snowman – 6 mysterious monster encounters

Frightening and bizarre monsters have been encountered by mankind for hundreds of years.

At least that's according to the thousands who claim to have seen them up close and personal, in the flesh.

Among the creatures spotted by humans over the past few centuries are giant ape-like beasts and giant crawling insects many times bigger than humans.

And, despite evidence supporting their existence being lacking, millions believe in their existence. There are those who even leave the safety of their own homes in a bid to hunt the legendary animals.

Some of these encounters have been captured on film, while others have been snapped on camera. A handful have even resulted in police involvement. Here, we look at some of the most fascinating…

Bigfoot

Bigfoot is arguably the most-legendary monster to have been seen by thousands over the decades.

The creature, also called a Sasquatch, was first sighted in 1818 and has numerous descriptions and films appear to show the beast as a large, hairy ape.

While the legitimacy of Bigfoot has been widely questioned, documents going as far back as 1840 describe “giant men” living near Native Americans in the US Pacific northwest.

Far from being a menacing beast, missionary Elkanah Walker said Bigfoot lived in the nearby mountains and came down to the river streams to steal fish caught in nets.

Indeed, many clips claiming to show Bigfoot show an ape-like creature calmly walking away from the camera and into the distance.

Despite the thousands of sightings, people are hungry for any details they can learn about the mysterious Bigfoot.

One of the most-recent sightings went viral after two hikers from Ohio spotted the beast before sharing the footage online.

The clip, which has garnered nearly 1million views since it was uploaded on February 2, showed a tall bear-like creature covered in fur wandering through the trees.

But, like many vids claiming to show the folklore figure, the footage was met with huge scepticism online with some suggesting the clip was a fake.

Chupacabras

A shadow of unease hung over Latin America in the 90s when accounts of a vampire-like monster first emerged in Puerto Rico.

Accounts started to spring up across the island after Madelyne Tolentino spotted an alien-like creature from her window in 1995.

Within days, stories linking the sighting to cases of butchered livestock “drained of all blood” started to appear with increasing frequency across Latin America.

While some accounts described the beast differently, the most common features of the chupacabras were that it had large eyes, long claws, spikes along its spine and that it was between four to five feet tall.

But, in the early 2000s, the descriptions of the beast morphed and became less alien. In these more recent accounts, the monster was described as being a large hairless dog-like animal that walked around on all fours.

The legend again entered the public eye after mangled bodies, purportedly of chupacabras, were found near slaughtered livestock.

But, it was soon discovered that many of the animals were coyote, dogs and – one bizarre case – a fish.

Chupacabras researcher Benjamin Radford said: “The reason these animals get identified as chupacabras is because they have lost their hair owing to saracoptic mange.”

Giant Insects

On the podcast Expanded Perspectives, hosts Kyle and Cam shared stories of people's encounters with the mega bugs.

In one case, a hunter reportedly ran into a hunter who found a 10ft-long centipede dragging a deer along.

During the November podcast, Cam said: “At first the hunter thought it was a huge snake, before he realised it was a giant centipede with hundreds of legs and armoured segments.

“As the hunter approached it the centipede tried to drag the deer up and when the creature reared itself he hauled out of there and has never been in that part of the forests again.”

But, there is some truth to the giant bugs.

Researchers into the prehistoric era have found fossils of giant spiders and centipede-like beasts that were several metres long.

Having first appeared on Earth some 300million years ago, insects only started to become smaller once dinosaurs entered the scene and started whittling down the number of larger beasts.

Many experts believe that insects evolved to become much smaller as a means to stop being eaten by the ferocious dinos.

The Yeti

Like the legendary Bigfoot, the Yeti has been described as a giant ape-like creature, which has been sighted walking around the mountains.

While Bigfoot is said to live in the US, the Yeti, aka the abominable snowman, dwells in the Himalayan mountains near Mount Everest and was first sighted by western hikers at the end of the 1800s.

Many photos of huge footprints in the snow were widely circulated, the most famous being Michael Ward’s snap – taken in 1951.

Scientists believe the Yeti is nothing more than a legend as after several decades, there has been no physical evidence that a creature described to be the Yeti is living in the mountains.

But, there could be some truth to the Yeti’s existence.

Remains of a huge 1-tonne 7ft clawed beast was discovered in the mountains of Ecuador earlier this month.

The creature, which roamed the Earth between 10,000 and 40,000 years ago was built to withstand harsh drops in temperature and high altitudes.

Scientists have dubbed the animal Oreomylodon Wegneri and have been finding bones of the species for nearly 100 years.

The Loch Ness Monster

Among the most-iconic creatures in all folklore is the Loch Ness Monster.

The beast, also known as Nessie, is said to live in the Scottish Highlands in Loch Ness and has been spotted numerous times over the years.

While many people have taken photos of what appears to be a dinosaur-like animal, none have been described as genuine by experts.

But, despite the scepticism surrounding the beast’s existence, there have been countless sightings over the years with the earliest going back to 565AD.

According to the chronicler Adomnan, a beast approached him near the River Ness before it stopped “as if pulled back with ropes” and fled.

The Kelly-Hopkinsville monster

In 1955, near Kelly and Hopkinsville in Kentucky, five adult and seven children claim they were attacked by aliens who raced towards their farmhouse and needed to hold them back using firearms.

They alerted the police on August 22 and described short creatures with thin bodies, round heads and pointy ears.

But, when police arrived at their farmhouse the following day they found the family had abandoned the site, claiming “the creatures had returned about 3.30 in the morning”.

There was no more evidence about the encounter, but stories of the even circulated widely in the US media, forcing the incident to be investigated further.

The Air Force would later go on to describe the encounter as a hoax in the Project Blue Book of declassified files.

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