Monday, February 18, 2008

Turner Beast

TURNER, Maine - An animal found dead along the powerlines over the weekend may be the mystery creature that has roamed the area for years, mauling dogs and frightening residents. Or it could be a dog that has been running wild in the woods. It depends on who you ask. The animal was found along Route 4 on Saturday after neighbors say it was struck by a car while chasing a cat across the street. The carcass was photographed and inspected by several people who live in the area, but nobody seems to know what it might be. "This is something I've never seen before," said Mike O'Donnell, who lives near the area where the creature was found. "It's an evil looking thing. It looks like half-rodent, half-dog." Wildlife officials and animal control officers told about the find declined to go to Turner to examine the remains. By Tuesday, the carcass had been picked clean by vultures and there was not much left of the dead animal.But Loren Coleman, considered by some to be the leading cryptozoologist in the world, said one thing is clear: the creature found in Turner is not likely somebody's pet. "It certainly doesn't look like a chow or any kind of domesticated dog that I've seen," Coleman said after reviewing photos of the animal. "It may be a hybrid between a dog and a wolf." Since 1991, residents across Androscoggin County have reported seeing and hearing a beast that defies classical description. Theories have ranged from a fisher, a coy dog, a hyena or a dingo to more fanciful ideas: some believe the local creature is Maine's own Chupacabra. In 2004, the enigmatic animal was blamed for attacking and killing a 16-year-old Doberman in Wales. Last year, it was a suspect when a Rottweiler was mauled in Greene. Others have reported seeing it or hearing the creature's screams in the night.Witnesses have said that the animal had eyes that glowed in the night. Others reported a high scream that chilled them. One woman considered moving out of her Litchfield home after hearing the animal's monstrous cry one night in 1991. Whether the creature found dead in Turner this weekend is the same one that spurred those legends could not be verified, though the descriptions of the animal were consistent with past accounts.Michelle O'Donnell said she spotted the animal near her yard roughly a week before the carcass was discovered."It was evil, evil looking. And it had a horrible stench I will never forget," she said. "We locked eyes for a few seconds and then it took off. I've lived in Maine my whole life and I've never seen anything like it." Down the road, Kenny Buck said it was his cat that was chased by the creature. The cat was found dead near Route 4 a day before the bigger, meaner beast was discovered."That's no dog," he said of the dead animal found near his property.Dana Johnson, a professional trapper known as "The Creature Catcher," examined the photographs Tuesday night. His guess: a black coyote with abnormal features.The neighbors who found the animal called a Maine game warden who told them he could not drive from Poland to Turner to inspect the remains. The warden told them it was probably a coyote and told them to research it online. They were advised to call Central Maine Power Co. to haul the carcass away, since it was found near the powerlines. Michelle O'Donnell said she researched the Internet extensively and could not identify the animal that way. She and her husband said they were more interested in finding out what it is than having it hauled away in haste."We've been hearing stories about this thing for years - about this thing that's been attacking, shredding and eating other animals," said Mike O'Donnell. "This is something that's not supposed to be out there."Coleman, the cryptozoologist who has been studying wildlife for 46 years and who has written 27 books on the subject, said he was bothered by the ears and the snout of the creature found in Turner. It reminded him of a case years ago in Northern Maine in which an animal shot by a hunter could not be identified.So perplexing was that case, wildlife officials sent away for DNA analysis. In the end, it was declared a rare wolf-dog hybrid. Since the attack that killed the Doberman in 2004 in Wales, several people from Litchfield, Sabattus, Greene, Turner, Lewiston and Auburn have come forward to speak of a mystery monster that roams the woods. Skeptics have insisted the creature is probably a coy dog, a fisher or a wolf. Those who have seen it, demand that it is none of the above.What was found dead in Turner over the weekend was described as charcoal gray and weighing between 40 and 50 pounds. It had a bushy tail, an extremely short snout and short ears. There were also curled fangs hanging over the lips.
"It looked," said Mike O'Donnell, "like something out of a Stephen King story."
~Mark LaFlamme, Wednesday, August 16, 2006

An update.


maxx said...

nice facts not many site about the turner beast give a lot of info thanks for your help.

Rain said...

That looks like a schipperke.... It's a type of dog that is not very common.. I could be wrong

Daniel Jepson said...

Thank you for your comment. It does quite resemble this breed. I believe there was a DNA test on the show MonsterQuest that said that it was a coyote-rottweiler mix. I could be wrong.

Anonymous said...

Yes it does resemble a Schipperke, but it's size is much much larger. I use to have a schipperke and he was small, but the hair pattern, nose and everything else does look like a super size schipperke. As for monster quest the dna test results came back as a domesticated dog with the possibility of a wolf father. Now a mixing a wolf n schipperke coudl work with father schipp and mother wolf but not vica versa, the pup would be too big for the mother. I would lean more toward a Chow/Wolf Mix. Chows believe it are not are very territorial and have been used as fight dogs just like pitbulls. Depending on what time of year the chows hair is thicker, but i would lean more towards a wolf/chow mix. Either way is compatable wolf could be male or female in this mix n the pup would not hurt either species.

Derek Bates said...

What do they mean by "the possibility"? Wouldn't they know if they conducted a DNA test; dna is pretty exact in determining the genetic background of an animal. Further more, what kind of domesticated dog are we talking about? I don't care what it resembles just what it is.

Daniel Jepson said...

They did do a DNA test. It was a dog. Nothing more. It said in the original post that they were in the process on conducting a DNA test. If you click on the link that says "An update", you can read that it was dog DNA.