The terrible phenomenon of cattle mutilations received international notice in the 1970s. In the Midwest of the United States, cattle farmers were constantly finding dead but healthy cattle. Ranchers stated the mutilations were not natural evidence of decomposition or typical predator or scavenger damage. In the early 1990s, there was an increase in the frequency of cattle mutilations in north Alabama.
Cattle Mutilations In Alabama
More than 30 cattle mutilations were reported in the northeastern portion of Alabama between October 1992 and April 1993. The mutilations shared similar characteristics:
- Surgical-like precision characterizes the incisions observed.
- The presence of intense heat is evident in the incision areas.
- Commonalities in body parts removed include sex organs, rectum, tongues, with additional instances of missing eyes and flesh from one side of the jawbone.
- Residues resembling powdery substances are occasionally found on or near mutilated animals.
- Some local residents have reported sightings of unidentified flying objects (UFOs) or peculiar lights in the sky preceding instances of animal mutilation.
- Investigators assert that mysterious white and blue helicopters were witnessed in approximately 90% of the cases, appearing in the vicinity around the time of the mutilations.
The mutilations were concentrated in the Alabama Sand Mountain region, including Albertville, Dog Town, Dawson, Grove Oak, and Fyffe. Fyffe made national headlines in 1989 after a wave of UFO encounters. A few cattle mutilations were also reported in Marshall, Cullman, and Chilton counties that year.
Death By Predator?
Officials in Alabama claimed that the cattle mutilations were the result of a natural predator or simply regular deterioration after the animal died. In an April 8, 1993, Anniston Star report, Alabama State Agriculture Commissioner A.W. Todd indicated that the wounds on the animals were predatory.
“We can’t find anything wrong. They died from natural causes. Livestock often die in fields and are partially eaten by predators. Their teeth marks are hidden as the body decomposes and swells, leaving what appears to look like a ‘clean cut.” —A.W. Todd, Alabama State Agriculture Commissioner
However, the evidence left on the mutilated animals was not the ragged rips or pieces of flesh left by a predator like a coyote. The incisions were exact surgical cuts, and many of them showed signs of extremely high heat. P. T. Williams, a local cattle owner from Arab, Alabama, discovered his 7-month-old black Angus calf disfigured, with one eye missing, its tongue ripped out from deep within its throat, and its torso appeared to have been cut apart. According to state officials, it was merely the work of coyotes who bit apart its thoracic cavity. There was only one flaw in their theory: Williams was a retired county coroner and forensic expert. In an interview with the Birmingham Post-Herald, Williams remarked, “That rib cage was snipped out, not chewed out.”
From the moment the public became aware of cattle mutilations, rumors spread that the animals were being sacrificed by a Satanic group. There was never any evidence of this.
Helicopters and the Men in Black?
Tommy Cole, an Albertville Police Detective, had one of his own cows mutilated. “I’ve never seen anything like it. There was no blood whatsoever no footprints, no tracks in the area. When I saw it I felt like predators did not do this,” Cole told the Birmingham Post-Herald. There were also helicopters. Farmers were seeing them on a regular basis, right before another head of livestock was discovered dead. Cole’s wife had an experience with a helicopter that sounds suspiciously similar to a meeting with the Men in Black:
Cole’s wife Jean was in her kitchen preparing lunch when she heard a helicopter “It was just vibrating the house” Mrs Cole recalls “I went out the back door and it was right there “I could see four men in business suits inside I looked at than and they looked at me I remember thinking they looked like business-men. Without acknowledging her the men quickly flew away in the craft which Mrs Cole describes as white with blue markings The next day when her husband was on their 350-acre farm and he one of their steers dead, with its underbelly neatly removed The animlmal was valued at $780 and weighed about 950 pounds. —–Kathy Kemp, reporter,Birmingham Post-Herald, Feb.22, 1993
As word spread that the frequently seen helicopters were perhaps killing the farmers’ cattle, the local military installation had to publish a public broadcast requesting the villagers not to shoot at their helicopters during an upcoming low altitude flight exercise (see clipping below).
Ted Oliphant was a cop in Fyffe, Alabama, who collaborated with other law enforcement organizations in north Alabama to investigate and meticulously document each cattle mutilation. Oliphant, originally from San Francisco, relocated to Fyffe in 1989 to examine several large UFO encounters that had thrust the little hamlet into national prominence. He liked Alabama so much that he chose to stay and join the Fyffe Police Department. When the cow mutilations started, Oliphant agreed to look into them. Only three of the 35 mutilations investigated by Oliphant between October 1993 and April 1994 were natural predatory deaths. In 1997, Oliphant published a couple of articles outlining his personal theory on what was going on with the cow mutilations and who was to blame. Despite being a UFO aficionado, Oliphant did not believe that UFOs were to blame for the cow mutilations. Because of eyewitness accounts of mysterious helicopters being seen in the area whenever there was a cattle mutilation, Oliphant hypothesized that the cattle mutilations were part of a secret government or military program to monitor diseases in cattle that could be passed on to humans. In the early 1990s, nothing was understood about Mad Cow Disease or its human counterpart, Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease. Oliphant also discovered that human drugs were found in the animal’s system in mutilation cases in Alabama, Florida, and California: barbiturates, anticoagulants, synthetic amphetamines, aluminum-titanium-oxygen-silicon flakes, and antimony, a chemical utilized in medicinal compounds. The pieces by Oliphant are intriguing to read. Ted Oliphant, sadly, died three years ago.