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Encounters with Mystery Animals

The other day, my signed edition of Missing 411 (western edition) arrived. I haven't had time to read it, but I took a peek at the New Mexico part.

I was happy to find that portion to be rather short, but at the same time something struck me - the cases mentioned all took place in the first part of September. As David Paulides mentions, September is not a time of year known for harsh weather in NM.

Had I got the book during a different time of year, I might not have even noticed, but it is September as I write this and, during the first part of September, we had two unusual experiences when we took the dog for her nightly walk. There have also been reports of odd encounters in the mountains nearby. Now, whether any of these things have anything to do with the Missing 411 of the book, I couldn't say.

Our first experience at the very beginning of Sept when we were taking Pooka (the dog) for her walk and decided to take the short way back home. The short way is a road that runs right in front of our next door neighbor and our house. On the other side is nothing but open land running through the middle and then a road and houses on the other side, which is the road we started on that loops back around. On the far side of my next door neighbors' house, there is also some open land. As we passed by that, we could hear something clawing at the ground and grunting and growling. I have a really bright flashlight which I shined all over the area, but saw nothing. The only thing I could think of was that it might be was a bear. Coyotes are always around and I have never known them to act that way and it didn't seem like something a feline would do, nor did it sound like a cat. We walked home very quickly. I walked backwards, shining my flashlight behind us most to the way to make sure nothing was following or coming after us.

About a week later, another strange animal encounter occurred. Once again, we were coming down that middle road when suddenly there was a loud noise which I first thought must be our neighbor (an elderly lady) screaming, because we were almost in front of her house. It took me a few seconds to realize the sound is coming from an area we had already passed. It is really incredibly loud and sounded very feline. Brit managed to catch its eyes in the flashlight, even though we were fairly far away by then. We couldn't make out a shape, just the eyes glowed when hit with the light. I do know a Bobcat hangs in that area a lot, but I couldn't figure out why it was drawing attention to itself after we had already passed it by. It was very strange.

Once we were home, I went to the Internet to listen to cat sounds. I couldn't find any Bobcat sounds which sounded like what we heard. Mountain lion sounds were closer, but still not the same. At that time I thought it was maybe a house cat in heat, which might explain why it seemed to be acting irrationally and drawing attention to itself, but I still can't imagine that a house cat (and I have heard lots of those in heat) could be that loud.

This experience so bothered us that we returned in daytime the following day to look around. We didn't see any tracks that looked big enough for a mountain lion and didn't see any small house cat sized tracks either. There were some mid-sized tracks which could have been a Bobcat, but there weren't many of them. Those tracks did seem to be where we estimated the eyes had been glowing, though it is hard to say for certain, given it was night and we were further down the road.

It isn't that unusual for us to see a wild animal or to catch the eyes of one in the flashlight at night. There was once during our walk that some coyotes seemed to be yipping at us from a ridge. A few times I have caught what was probably a Bobcat's eyes in the flashlight in the same area we had the experiences, but they have always been totally silent. There was even one night that I believe, due to the color, the cat I saw was a young (too small to be full grown) mountain lion which stalked us or at least followed us until we left that area. There was no sound that time either and if I had not had my flashlight then I would have never known it was there.

Then a few days after these experiences, Lon Strickler posted this report of a strange animal in Cibola National Forest on his site Cibola is pretty much just across a ridge from where I live.

I am not trying to say that was either of the animals we encountered, but it was another strange animal occurrence that happened during the first half of September.

I also don't really believe these events have anything to do with the truly weird cases in Missing 411. It just happened that reading that part about September and New Mexico made me think about it more than I probably would have otherwise.

My thought is that animals instinctively know when September rolls around that they don't have much hunting time before winter to put on the added fat they may need to survive. My pond fish seem to know and when September gets here they start acting far more hungry than they did during the summer. My dog also acts hungrier in the Fall and, judging by myself, humans may have this natural instinct too.

Although, if it were just that natural instinct to bulk up for winter, I would think that we would have similar experiences every Fall and we don't. So now I am wondering if maybe those wild animals (whatever they were) know something that we don't? Like perhaps it is going to be a particularly brutal winter? I suppose I will find out if that guess is right, but I hope that it isn't.

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  • Lesley is also a columnist for UFO Magazine. Check it out !