Warning: Disturbing content and photos.
Authorities in Oregon are working to determine how five bulls died on a ranch. They were found drained of their blood and body parts were surgically removed.
Officials had theorized that a cult was behind it. However, there has been a lack of evidence for that, including no footprints or tire tracks.
“A lot of people lean toward the aliens,” Deputy Dan Jenkins of the Harney County Sheriff’s Office, told NPR.
“One caller had told us to look for basically a depression under the carcass. ‘Cause he said that the alien ships will kinda beam the cow up and do whatever they are going to do with it. Then just drop it from a great height,” he added.
According to an NPR reporter who viewed the scene, the bull was “bloodless” and his tongue and other body parts were “surgically” cut out.
There were no gunshot wounds, and officials have ruled out natural predators such as cougars, wolves, and bears.
The ranch’s vice president, Colby Marshall, said that the bulls were worth about $6,000 each and were meant for breeding, which means the ranch lost hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of future calves.
The incident took place at the Silvies Valley Ranch in remote eastern Oregon.
“It’s rugged,” Marshall said. “I mean this is the frontier. If some person, or persons, has the ability to take down a 2,000-pound range bull, you know, it’s not inconceivable that they wouldn’t have a lot of problems dealing with a 180-pound cowboy.”
The killing and mutilation of the animals sparked a multi-agency investigation in the remote region, according to The Oregonian, which reported that officials haven’t yet come up with a cause of death.
“How somebody put these bulls on the ground at what would be arguably a fairly close range—and to do it in a way that didn’t leave any signs, no trace evidence, no footprints, no struggle marks from the animal, no broken limbs—I have no idea,” said Marshall.
The deaths are similar to a rash of livestock killings in the 1970s across the West when hundreds of cows and bulls were killed. Their tongues, genitals, and other parts were also missing along with surgical-like cuts.
Some speculated that it was UFOs, a government program, or cryptids. Michael Goleman, a history professor at Somerset Community College in Kentucky who researched the phenomenon, told the Oregonian that satanic cults might be behind the killings.
Harney County Sheriff’s Deputy Dan Jenkins said that there is a lack of physical evidence at the scene of the crime. No footprints, no tire or ATV tracks, and nothing else was found, according to The Oregonian.
NPR also interviewed another Oregon rancher, Andie Davies, who said that one of her cows was found cut up and bloodless.
Davies and her husband drove around the bull’s carcass, but there were no tracks found.
“Everything you do leaves tracks” in that dusty region, she said.
Terry Anderson, also of Oregon, said that one of his cows was found dead with its udder removed with razor-sharp precision. It was also bloodless.
“And not one drop of blood anywhere,” Anderson added.
“It’s just left a really strange feeling with me since that day. You can’t explain it,” he said. “And, you know, no one else has been able to explain it.”