Mystery in History Cattle Mutilations Part 1

About the mystery in history involoving cattle mutilations including possible solutions.


The Event: Cattle Mutilations

When: 1963 to the present

Where: United States

The Mystery: Although incidents of cattle mutilations have been noted as far back as 1810, in the area of the Scotch-English border, the real story doesn't begin until November, 1963. That was when cattle near Gallipolis, O., were discovered after having been carved up with "surgical precision." All the blood had been drained from their bodies, and the brains and other organs had been removed. This strange discovery remained an isolated episode until Sept. 9, 1967, when a gelding named Snippy was found on the Harry King Ranch near Alamosa, Colo., with organs missing and blood drained. Since Snippy's death, over 8,000 cattle mutilations have been reported.

Basic patterns have emerged from the study of these mutilations. In a classic mutilation case, the deed is done at night, with no witnesses. No footprints or vehicle tracks can be found and there are no signs of struggle. The victimized cow is devoid of blood, but there are no traces of blood nearby. Several organs may be missing, usually the sex organs. The rectum has been cut out cleanly, and sometimes miscellaneous body parts, such as the tongue or patches of skin, are gone. Occasionally, mysterious lights have been reported in the area just before a mutilation.

During the early 1970s incidents of cattle mutilations occurred sporadically. Then in 1973 there was a dramatic increase in mutilation cases. During a six-week period beginning on Nov. 30, 44 cows were mutilated in north-central Kansas alone. Over 100 mutilations took place during the summer of 1974 in South Dakota, Nebraska, and Iowa. In the fall, activity centered in Minnesota. In 1975 reports of cattle mutilations moved south. By February mutilated cows were being discovered all over Texas and Oklahoma. On Feb. 21 the Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association offered a cash reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of persons responsible for the mutilations. In March and April, Kansas was hit again. In June, the Elbert County Colorado Livestock Association offered a reward after that county experienced 36 mutilations in four months. Before the year was out, the Elbert County total had risen to 80. The situation had also reached epidemic proportions in Montana, Idaho, and parts of Wyoming. Between August, 1975, and May, 1976, authorities in Cascade County, Montana, received reports of more than 100 cattle mutilations as well as 130 sightings of mysterious craft in the sky.

The cattle mutilations phenomena peaked in 1975 but has continued at a steady rate since then, with noteworthy flare-ups in 1978 and 1979 in Arkansas and New Mexico.

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