Jan 3, 2011 4:17 PM
Biologists have anatomically confirmed that a hairless animal shot by a man in Nelson County nearly two weeks ago is not a chupacabra.
According to LEX 18 sister station WLWT-TV in Cincinnati, Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife officials said the hairless animal is actually a hairless raccoon.
The mythical chupacabra has been a mystery since 1995, with sightings reported all over the United States, from Texas to Maine. The legend says the elusive dog-like creature attacks livestock, bleeding them dry of blood -- their favorite being goats.
Despite the identification, scientists are still interested in studying the animal further because this kind of hairless animal is becoming more common in Kentucky.
Scientists have taken samples from the Nelson County animal to send for further study at an outside laboratory.
Biologists said the animal has a skin disorder causing it to have no hair.
Many animals suspected to be chupacabras in the West turned out to be coyotes with mange, scientists said. In Kentucky, wildlife officials said those hairless animals are usually raccoons suffering from a skin disorder similar to the Nelson County raccoon.