Cattle Mutilations

Cattle Mutilation Phenomena refers to thousands of cases in North America where cattle have been found mutilated under abnormal circumstances. Sheep, horses or even humans have also been similarly mutilated, according to some accounts. Many mutilated cattle have been found marked with fluorescent paint, probably to help identify them in the dark.

The cows are found dead (although the cause of death is undetermined), exsanguinated (all their blood has been removed). Precise "laser-precision" cuts are observed in the mutilated cattle. They have had certain organs surgically removed from their bodies. Often their reproductive and rectal organs have been removed.

Abnormally high radiation levels have been detected near the dead animals when they are found, and scavengers will not touch the carcass. There are no footprints leading to or from the cows. There is evidence (clamp marks on the animals' legs) that the cattle were taken from their habitats and mutilated elsewhere. Sightings of UFOs and strange, unmarked, black helicopters coincide with many cattle mutilation cases.

There is no consensus that the phenomenon actually exists, or if it does exist, what causes the phenomenon. The number of animals said to be mutilated under unusual circumstances is unclear, but proponents argue it may be in the thousands. Ranchers are often said to be reluctant to come forward and report animals mutilated under odd circumstances, due to several factors: the associated ridicule, fear of reprisal, and the financial costs of securing necropsy for dead livestock.

Opinions are divided as to the nature and causes of this phenomenon. Some argue that there is no unusual "cattle mutilation" and that people are misinterpreting normal animal deaths. Some attribute these mutilations to extraterrestrials; UFOs are sometimes reported in conjunction with alleged mutilations. Others have suggested that secretive governmental or military agencies may be involved. Some observers have taken a more agnostic approach, arguing that some mutilations do indeed appear odd, but do not offer enough data to reach an informed conclusion. Yet this remains a world phenomenon.

Kansas 1897

An account by Alexander Hamilton of Leroy, Kansas, supposedly occurred about April 19, 1897, and was published in the Yates Center Farmer's Advocate of April 23. Hamilton, his son, and a tenant witnessed an airship hovering over his cattle pen. Upon closer examination, the witnesses realized that a red "cable" from the airship had lassoed a heifer, but had also become entangled in the pen's fence.

After trying unsuccessfully to free the heifer, Hamilton cut loose a portion of the fence, then "stood in amazement to see the ship, cow and all rise slowly and sail off." (Jacobs, 15) Some have suggested this was the earliest report of cattle mutilation. This was part of a larger wave of so-called mystery airship sightings. (In 1982, however, UFO researcher Jerome Clark debunked this story, and confirmed via interviews and Hamilton's own affidavit that the story was a successful attempt to win a Liar's Club competition to create the most outlandish tall tale). Most of the allegedly unusual mutilations, however, date from the 1960s with cases continuing to the present.

Colorado 1967

The first allegedly strange death of livestock--or at least the first widely-publicized case--comes from near Alamosa, Colorado, in 1967. On September 7 of that year, Agnes King and her son Harry noted that Snippy (The real name of the animal was Lady, but the media quickly adopted the name Snippy, which has stuck), a three-year-old horse had not returned to the ranch at the usual time for her water. This was unusual, given the heat and the arid conditions.

Harry found Snippy on September 9. Her head and neck had been skinned and defleshed, the bones were white and clean. To King, the cuts on Snippy seemed to have been very precise. There was no blood at the scene, according to Harry, and there was a strong medicinal odor in the air.

The next day, Harry and Agnes returned to the scene with Mr. and Mrs. Berle Lewis, who were Agnes' brother and sister-in-law. They found a lump of skin and horse flesh; when Mrs. Lewis touched it, the flesh oozed a greenish fluid which burned her hand. They also reported the discovery of fifteen tapering, circular exhaust marks punched into the ground over some 5000 square yards. (Saunders and Harkins, 156) The medicinal odor had weakened somewhat, but was still present.

Mrs. Lewis contacted the United States Forest Service, and Ranger Duane Martin was sent to investigate. Among other tasks, Martin checked the area with a civil defense Geiger counter. He reported finding a considerable increase in radioactivity about two city blocks from the body. (Saunders and Harkins, 157) Later, Martin would state, "The death of this saddle pony is one of the most mysterious sights I've ever witnessed ... I've seen stock killed by lightning, but it was never like this."

After trying to interest other authorities with little success, Mrs. Lewis turned to her professional connections: She wrote occasionally for the Pueblo Chieftain. Her account of Snippy's strange death was published in that newspaper, and was picked up by the Associated Press on October 5, 1967. Soon, much of the United States knew the tale of Snippy's death, and reports of UFO's were made from others in Colorado. That same day, an account by Superior Court Judge Charles E. Bennett of Denver, Colorado, saw publication. Bennett and his wife claimed to have witnessed three reddish-orange rings in the sky. They maintained a triangular formation, moved at a high speed, and made a humming sound. (Saunders and Harkins, 157)

The civilian UFO research group NICAP became involved in the case as well, and some people were speculating that UFOs were somehow involved with Snippy's death. Shortly thereafter, an anonymous Denver pathologist's account of his autopsy saw publication. Snippy's brain and abdominal organs were missing, he said, and there was no material in the spinal column. The pathologist insisted on anonymity, he said, due to fear of damaging his reputation with involvement in such a high-profile case.

The Condon Committee, then at the University of Colorado, sent its coordinator, Robert Low, to investigate. Low brought in Dr Robert O. Adams, head of Colorado State University's Veterinary and Biomedical Science School. Adams examined Snippy and the evidence. He concluded there were 'No unearthly causes, at least not to my mind.' (Saunders and Harkins, 164) Adams noted a severe infection in Snippy's hindquarters, and speculated that someone had come across the dying horse and slit its throat in order to end its misery. Then, Adams said, scavengers had inflicted the rest of the damage to the horse.

To some, this settled the question, but Mrs. Lewis argued that Adams' conclusions were flawed in not accounting for the lack of blood at the scene and the medicinal odor. Low reported that he'd located the anonymous pathologist; Low said that the man was widely misquoted and was furthermore not a pathologist. The man's opinions of Snippy's death generally matched Adams', said Low. Jerome Clark later identifies the anonymous man as hematologist John H. Altshuler. (Clark, 17)


In his book The Mothman Prophecies,. also a film, John Keel claims to have examined a number of slain dogs, cows and horses in the Point Pleasant, West Virginia area in 1966 and 1967. These animals, Keel writes, bore surgical-like incisions in their throats ... often the carcasses seemed drained of blood.


The marks found on the animals are not consistent with attacks by predators such as wolves or coyotes. In many cases the owners hear nothing at the time of the mutilation which is usually at night. All organ removal and incisions are done with surgical precision, and in some cases the evidence of cauterization along the incision lines has led investigators to believe the use of some sort of high heat cutting device has been administered, suggesting the strong possibility of a laser. Bones are also clearly cut with no bone fragments around the cut.

The body of the animal is totally drained of blood yet there no trace of blood is found, no signs of a struggle, footprints or tire tracks found anywhere on the ground around the body.

The typical cattle mutilation has shown repeatedly, huge oval shaped incisions around the jaw bone and in most cases the exposed jaw is completely removed, and the tongue removed from a precise incision deep in the throat. Also observed is the additional removal of at least one (1) eyeball, the udders on the female are most always removed and the sexual organs on both sexes are also most always removed.

UFOs and strange black unmarked helicopters have been linked with these mutilations since they have been sighted at the same time in the same area where the mutilated bovines have been found. There have been reports about UFO's lifting the animal off the ground. No one seems to have a valid reason as to the link between the multilations and ET's.

In this image from 1993, taken by Fyffe Alabama Police Officer Ted Oliphant, there is no evidence of scavenging birds, but rather a precise oval incision which removed the udder while leaving the underlying tissues untouched. The entire operation shows no blood.

Many animal mutilations are now being blamed on the animlas called Chupacabras who have yet to be captured and researched. Animal victims are found with a puncture hole in their neck and blood drained.

The foremost authority of animal mutilations is Linda Moulton Howe. Linda was a guest on my talk show "The Metaphysical Experience" in the 1990's where we discussed this world wide phenomenon, leading me to believe that something paranormal has occurred. To date no one has video footage of an animal being carried away by an alien space craft - but there are dozens of witnesses who report seeing this phenomena.

Linda still investigates and reports ongoing cases which can be found on her archived files. She is also involved with research having to do with the crop circle phenomenon, another controversial subject.

Reports continue through recent years, though as noted above, precise numbers are very difficult to determine. According to a 1997 NIDS report, ranchers in Utah were weighing and tagging calves one morning. They tagged an 87-pound individual. Less than an hour later, reported that they made a shocking discovery. In a 45 minute period in daylight, 100 yards from any cover, with the rancher about 200-300 yards away, the calf had most of its body weight removed, including entrails, and appeared to have been placed carefully on the ground with no blood present or near the animal.


Explanations vary even with researchers and their conclusions. As with alien abductions, conclusions are in the eye of the experiencer, and may never be substantiated one way or another unless a cow or other animal is filmed being taken or mutilated. Somehow there seems to be a mehtod to this madness that leads one to believe that humans and some animals are part of an ongoing biogenetic experiment.

Skeptics, such as Robert T. Carroll, and some other scientists hold that the apparent mutilations have completely natural and terrestrial origins: animals that have died from natural causes which have then been fed upon by a variety of scavengers, such as vultures, buzzards, and blowflies who tend to remove the eyes and softer internal organs first via the easiest access route - the mouth and anus. To me this seems doubtful.

The disappearance of the mouth, lips and genitalia may be due to dehydration. Blood settles to the lowest point in the body and breaks down into its basic chemical components, thus accounting for an apparent "lack of blood". An FBI study of the subject found nothing unusual. Columnist Cecil Adams notes that "In 1974, for instance, state veterinary labs investigating a rash of mutilation reports in Nebraska and South Dakota reported that every animal brought to them for examination had died of natural causes."

Proponents respond that many debunkers have little or no field experience with such mutilations, and further note that farmers and large-animal veterinarians have made distinctions between normal predation and so-called "cattle mutilations."

Humans in Helicopters

There have been reports that with some witnessed cattle mutilations, humans were seen to come in a what appeared as a UFO. When its cockpit lights came on, they revealed helicopter rotors above the craft. It is alleged that these events were done by humans arriving in helicopters which were disguised as flying saucers, as disinformation to distract US public attention from real secret aircraft development. There is a theory that the systematic removal of the same parts from all the attacked cattle, was a covert test for chemical or radioactive contamination. We may never know the truth about that, but as we have been shown over and over again, the government has been covering up information for decades.


Some have speculated that the mutilations may have been perpetrated by satanists or other cultists. Christian evangelist Bob Larson claims that cattle mutilations are the work of cults. The animals, he says, are sacrificed to Satan. When asked why the alleged cultists leave no footprints, Larson claims that they are either hoisted on extendable cranes or lowered from helicopters. For each reasonable hypothesis proposed by skeptics, Larson proposes an even wilder counter-theory. Such "progressive claim enhancement" is consistent with true-believer syndrome.


In April 2001, NIDS interviewed a rancher (he was also a veteran of the Vietnam War) then living in Cache County, Utah who had reported a number of odd cattle deaths and injuries extending back over two decades. More intriguingly, the rancher (designated "Witness 1") reported a run-in with mysterious military personnel in 1976.

The account was corroborated via a separate interview with the witness's former superior officer, the retired sheriff of Cache County. NIDS notes that they verified the interviewees' identities and past employment claims, but the report withholds their names due to promises of privacy. There have been many other similar reports, but this account is among the most detailed and intriguing (keeping in mind, of course, the potential shortcomings and limitations of eyewitness testimony). The lengthy report is available at this external link, which contains graphic photos: For some time prior to 1976, several ranchers in and near Cache County had witnessed unmarked helicopters which they associated with the ongoing mutilations.

As the retired sheriff (designated "Witness 2") reported, "every time we'd see those black helicopters, a day or so later we'd have a farmer or rancher call in with two or three dead cows." The helicopters were not only witnessed flying in the skies, but also landing at the small Cache-Logan Community Airport. The ranchers organized armed patrols, and determined that if the chance presented itself, they would fire upon the helicopters.

Witness 1 (who was a Sheriff's deputy in 1976) insisted that late one evening, three unmarked and unusually quiet helicopters were sighted. He and several others rushed to the Cache-Logan airport where they saw a small airplane on the runway alongside one of the three helicopters. After trying to block the airplane's departure route with their cars, they observed a man wearing coveralls who left a Huey-type helicopter "with a shiny suitcase in hand."

The man jogged to the airplane and gave the briefcase to the airplane's pilot. Much to the unnamed witness's surprise, the airplane began to take off, narrowly missing the impromptu police vehicle barricade, and forcing one fellow deputy to crash his police cruiser to avoid a collision. The man left the helicopter's door open, and the former sheriff noted "on the bottom of the door on the helicopter" the words "Property of U.S. Army" were inscribed; "that little insignia they have on all their equipment."

The witness then turned his attention to the man, a tall figure perhaps 35 years old, wearing green military-style fatigues which lacked, however, the characteristic identification of name, rank or military unit. The witnessed asked the tall man for identification; the man replied "I have none." The witness said he touched the man's chest, partly to see if the man wore dog tags under his clothing. He did not.

When the witnesses touched the man's chest, the airborne helicopters both made moves that the witness "Interpret(ed) as a beginning gun pass". The witness speculated that "if I attempted to physically arrest that man, they'd a killed us both, right there, on the spot, with the same mental attitude that the pilot had ... that ran my patrol car off a runway."

Due to this perceived threat (and the lack of any firm evidence of criminal wrongdoing), the witness decided to not attempt an arrest. He did, however, tell the man that the police and ranchers in the area were frustrated with the inexplicable deaths of their cattle, and that they suspected the unmarked helicopters were involved. He added that eventually, some armed rancher or farmer with a rifle would shoot at the helicopters, "and we intend to bring you down, sir."

After a pause, the man said, "May I go?" The witness said yes, and the man returned to his helicopter, which flew off to the west. The witness (and several other individuals) asserted that after this showdown, that the unmarked helicopters were no longer seen, and the cattle mutilations in northern Utah and southern Idaho ceased for some five years.

Later in 1976, a National Sheriff's Association colleague in Texas was investigating a number of cattle mutilations, and, inspired by the Utah police's actions, soon organized armed patrols, and began closely monitoring the unmarked helicopters. Law-enforcement officers in Texas had no face-to-face encounter with the pilots, but they reported that the mutilations in the area ceased.

Another belief recently put forward concerns the large amount of mutilations taking place in close proximity to former nuclear test sites. It has been speculated that the U.S. Military has been dissecting these cows to examine the amount of exposure they receive from radiation fallout. Since these cows would account for a section of the meat and dairy industry, as well as represent an estimate of the human populations exposure to the fallout. Random samples would need to be taken since varying times of exposure and other factors must be accounted for. Obviously, the need for a "cover-up" would be mandatory since a population finding out that they've been poisoned would not be beneficial.

Just as with human alien abductions, the average person may be curious about animal mutilations, read up on the subject, draw their own conclusions, then move on. For others, this is very real and ongoing. I have heard many stories from people who have had cattle on their property mutilated, and wish to remain anonymous. They have nothing to gain by fabricating these tales. Check out Linda's website for the most current research.