I wasn't aware of cattle mutilations until we attended a fairly recent talk. It sounded disturbing; the photos were horrendous, but the mystery of who (or what) and why reeled me in.
To cut a long (and probably repetitive) story short: Some believe it's a government body behind the 'mutilations' while others favour aliens. The majority of articles written on the subject suggest that precision surgery was used to remove organs and body parts from the animals. The words 'laser-like' or 'surgical' cuts certainly gives that impression. There are those who tell us that a few animals had broken bones, that there were deep indentations (some say up to three inches deep!) beneath the carcasses, suggestive of being dropped from a height. Then there's the mention of cattle found in trees which can only lead the reader (or listener) to reach the conclusion that the animals had been airlifted, either by helicopter or beamed up by aliens, and then unceremoniously dumped (from a huge height apparently) into the field they had originally been taken from.
But for me there's too many unanswered questions with that scenario. Why go to all the bother of snatching animals under the cover of dark, secret them off to a lab somewhere for testing and then return their 'mutilated' bodies? Why not simply test the foliage, grass or animal feed? If the animals are key to whatever experiments is supposedly going on, then why not tell the farmer/rancher that one or two of his cattle require testing for whatever reason they may care to fabricate (new virus? New disease? How about good ol' foot and mouth?) with the promise of compensation. Why not buy cattle and graze them nearby? Even if I screw on my 'bestest' conspiracy head, it doesn't make sense to steal an animal and then return it, surely that would only cause a stir and risk an investigation (which did happen in the 70's). Or are we to believe that it was designed that way to start the rumour of aliens in the vicinity? Which ever way I look at it, either scenario will cause too much interest. Surely the last thing any covert operation needed was curious reporters or extraterrestrial believers setting up camp let alone an investigation which could very well blow the lid on the supposed secret tests.
All very mysterious...so mysterious that I found myself looking into it. What I discovered behind the 'mutilations' though is somewhat less mysterious and more down-to-earth.
Cattle had been dropped from a great height
Indentation beneath the carcass
Indentation beneath the carcass
I can find no evidence of this supposed “deep indentation” beneath the cows in any of the numerous available photos of 'cattle mutilations', in fact all photos show cows laid on the surface. You would think with this being one of the most pivotal statements to prove alien's are behind the 'cattle mutilations' that there would be at least one. So where did this story come from?
The only documented source I could find that suggests a cow being dropped from a great height is from Dulce, New Mexico (April 20, 1979). An officer claimed “he had seen one mutilation case in which a 600-pound cow was found in the branches of a tree – indicating to him it must have been dropped there by some type of aircraft.”
The officer mentioned is Gabriel ('Gabe') L Valdez.
The problem with this is that he apparently later admitted “...that the animal was not actually in the tree but was found at its base”. So if true it removes the suggestion that the cow had been dropped from a great height. It seems his story has been embellished over the years, morphing into “deep indentations in the ground”.
Conclusion: There is nothing to substantiate the claim that 'mutilated cattle' (or any animal for that matter) was dropped from a great height.
Side note: The only photographs of large animals I could find lodged in trees were deer but they are obvious hoaxes.
Another statement to indicate the cattle were dropped from on high is that some had broken bones.
The source appears to originate from the same police officer in Dulce, New Mexico, and again there is nothing to substantiate this story. In fact, there is no mention of broken bones in the autopsies written by trained veterinarians. What makes matters worse is that his associated officer was later interviewed and stated that although a hard-working, dedicated policeman, he has become too emotionally involved in cattle mutilations and “sees things that are not there.” When asked for an example, he mentioned an incident in Taos which both he and the officer had investigated together. The officer, he said, “claimed the animal had broken bones when it did not.”
Conclusion: Nothing to substantiate broken bones as proof of being dropped from a height.
Tranquiliser and anti-coagulant found in the liver
A tranquilliser and anti-coagulant tested positive in a bull, leading to speculation that the animal was rendered unconscious and an anti-coagulant administered to enable the blood to be completely drained.
According to Rommel's investigation, the tranquilliser was Chlorpromazine. It's usually injected but can be added to animal feed or given orally in tablet form. Apparently this is done to calm the animal when it's ill and acting 'goofy'. Chlorpromazine can remain in the body for some time depending on the size and metabolism of the animal.
The anti-coagulant was citric acid.
Dale Spall of Los Alamos Scientific Laboratory, who had performed the original blood tests, said he had found only a trace of chlorpromazine in the blood and was not significant enough to have affected the animal. Also found was high level of napthalene which indicated the animal had been on a hormone feed. He had originally thought the amount of citric acid exceeded normal levels, he has since determined, through additional tests, that the amount of citric acid (anti-coagulant) was normal. The drug, he pointed out, occurs naturally in all animals.
Conclusion: Misunderstanding of 'drug' usage.
Circular 'tripod' marks
These marks/tracks, approximately 4” (four inches) in diameter, have often been cited as proof that alien spacecraft (or hovering craft) had landed in the vicinity of the 'mutilated' cattle; the circular depressions in the ground indicating that the craft was heavy. While this may seem like solid proof that aliens are indeed involved, further reading finds that there is probably a more down-to-earth explanation. The problem with looking for specifics to back a story is that the obvious is sometimes overlooked.
No impressions of the tracks/marks were taken, but I have no reason to doubt Gabe's report, he seems like a genuine and honest police officer who was merely reporting as much as was humanly possible no matter how significant or insignificant. However, Rommel had observed on a number of occasions that the marks are due to a combination of certain weather and soil conditions prevalent in the south-west, the preserved hoof marks from a cow and horses can quickly erode to a circular-like depression of approximately the size mentioned.
Conclusion: Mistaken representation of marks/tracks
During a recorded interview Gabe Valdez stated categorically that it is "humans not UFOs or Satanic groups or people from Mars". Although still determined that the cattle were mutilated he states that “it was humans” and he believes researchers carried out the acts using helicopters.
Read more at Koat NewsAlbuquerque
In another interview (2011) regards the Dulce 'cattle mutilations' he said "I'm not saying it's a government agency or not, but we were able to find some physical evidence at the crime scene...gas masks, er, glow sticks and er, some type of instrument that was monitoring or, whatever it was for we couldn't determine what it was for, because it had to be some form of advanced scientist that knew what they were working on".
I don't know whether or not he mentioned gas masks or glow sticks in his original police reports at the time of the so-called mutilations, but if he did then how have the UFO hunters miss that? If he didn't, then it's mind boggling why he would choose to omit it.
Although there are no other such statements made then, or since, by any other law enforcement, veterinarian or indeed any professional bodies, this story remains, to this day, as the very basis of the belief that aliens are behind the “cattle mutilations.”
No thrash marks or signs of struggle
Apart from other diseases that can cause sudden onset of death in cattle, “a massively underestimated cause of sudden deaths is one of the oldest bacteria of them all – clostridia. They are spread throughout the world and take the lives of cattle, sheep and most other farm livestock on a daily basis”
Clinical signs are rarely observed and cattle are simply found dead.
Clostridium disease includes: Black disease; blackleg; malignant oedema; tetanus and botulism). Black disease is triggered by various factors which damage body tissues activating latent spores, followed by rapid multiplication in the animal's body with toxin production, causing death within hours.
Some of the carcasses did indeed test positive for Black Leg.
Why are there no signs of blood on the ground?
The blood naturally coagulates inside the animal soon after death. Once the heart stops beating the blood begins to settle in the parts of the body that are closest to the ground. It partly dries and water content evaporates. The video, posted further down, gives a good example of this.
In some cases a dark black outline is left on the grass surrounding the animal which appears to be a burn mark
This time-lapse video shows the decomposition of a cow in natural surroundings. Unfortunately it was taken in Australia rather than America or UK but it still gives a good idea of what goes on.
As this time-lapse video was taken over a seven day period it flashes through rather quickly. Day one and two go by in a blink of an eye. Those two days are the most important to illustrate how the 'classic' signs of 'cattle mutilation' occur naturally, so the video may have to be paused several times.
The video starts on 1st October. By the 2nd October the anal area has already been 'cored' out and the body bloats. Most of the anal core activity is done by carrion animals, while the crows do their work during daylight hours. During day two, although there is no outward visible signs of entry to the stomach area (no cuts to the underbelly), the stomach starts sinking as the internal organs begin decomposing and ingested by seemingly invisible eaters (insects/blowflies/maggots that have invaded the body). The layman looking for clues as to how the 'missing' organs were extracted may reach the mistaken conclusion that suction was used through the mouth or anal cavity.
Note the lack of blood on the time-lapse video and the dark 'burn' patch (caused by purge fluid as explained in the previously) that becomes noticeable on 4th October when the carcass is moved.
As the video is shot from the rear of the cow it's difficult to see exactly what is happening to the eyes, eyelid, ears and tongue, however, going by the crow activity they do seem to be working on the head. Note that in most cases of animal 'mutilations' it appears only one ear and/or eye is missing. This is probably because the exposed ear and eye is easier to reach than the ear and eye laid to the ground:
Who or what is behind the 'cattle mutilations'?
In a nutshell: The animal kingdom.
Why is it that certain areas on the cow appear to have been mutilated?
Most probably because the skin covering those areas is only about a fifth as thick as the hide on the the animal, so the soft tissues that make for easier pickings – eyes, sexual organs, udders etc – will be pecked, nibbled and eaten first.
What about the appearance of 'laser-like' or 'surgical' wounds?
I know it's hard to believe when the 'laser-like' appearance has been drummed so hard, but it is a fact that large and small carrion help to create the illusion of surgical cuts. Vultures, ravens, crows, foxes, dogs and hogs, eat the soft tissues while the nibbling of blowflies and maggots give the impression, to the untrained eye, of smooth edges. Any veterinarian will be able to tell the difference between a cut made by a knife/laser to the natural process of decomposition. Also, in some cases the skin can tear cleanly when it becomes stretched during postmortem bloat.
In the past many veterinarians have stated the reason for these 'mutilations' is natural decomposition and scavenger activity yet some still refuse to accept the obvious. Before poo-pooing anything I've offered, perhaps browse the internet and read some forensic and pathology reports/articles. They really do make for interesting reading.
I have no personal beliefs regards extraterrestrials, except to say that as yet I haven't seen any proof they exist. I have no problem with those who wish to believe wholehearted, come what may, that aliens from a distant galaxy visit planet earth. I just feel uneasy about so-called 'experts' on the subject of 'cattle mutilations' repeating stories they've come across without checking them. They may have genuinely mistaken various words to mean something else – but I can't help feeling that truth rarely sells as well as a good ol' mystery.
Further reading: Operation Animal Mutilation:
Report of the district attorney, 1st judicial district, state of New Mexico, June 1980
By Kenneth M Rommel, Jr. (Project Director)
FBI Records: The Vault, animal mutilations
Dulce, New Mexico. Scans of the original letters, reports, chemical analysis, autopsy reports etc