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Legendary chupacabra? Nope — mysterious critter was hairless raccoon

By JIM BROOKS
Nelson County Gazette

Monday, Jan. 3, 2011, 11: 45 p.m. — The “mysterious” hairless animal that was shot and killed on a Nelson County farm was not so mysterious after all.

WAVE TV-3 reported Monday evening that the state Department of Fish & Wildlife had confirmed the animal was a raccoon. The report said wildlife biologists made the connection by matching biological features. They did not know why the raccoon lost its fur.

The hairless animal created quite a media stir, earning a spot on newscasts all over the state and even on the national news. Some reports questioned if the animal was an example of the mythical “chupacabra,” a legendary animal that is said to attack livestock and drink its blood, particularly goats.

But a Google search of the term “hairless raccoon” will turn up numerous stories and photos of animals nearly identical to the one shot and killed here in Nelson County. Click here to see this “chupacabra” — hairless raccoon — that was shot and killed last January in Texas.

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