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Sunday, 5 February 2012

Texas Big Bird of the 1970s

I just received an email asking for information about the "Texas Big Birds" seen in the later half of the 1970s. Here is an excerpt of my reply.

NOW THEN: it turns out that some Texans of Mexican descent killed and buried one of the birds at the time. The remains were later exhumed and proved to be thiose of a California condor.[That was according to a filler article printed in the Indianapolis Star some years later on-DD]
That being said, at the time there were all sorts of sightings of "Texas Big Birds" at the time, and the category included sightings of giant bats the size of a small human (Child or dwarf) which we later got to hear much more about as being a subsection of "Chupacabras" reports. There wereports of the "ordinary" Big Bird type, with about a ten-foot wingspan and answering to the description of a condor, and then there were "extraordinary" Big Bird reports that described condor-like birds at double those dimensions, which included reports of feathers, droppings and tracks. The tracks were a foot long, three-toed with no spur in back, the wingspan of the bird in flight about twenty fet across, and the birds standing on the ground were at least the size of a tall human with the head the size of the skull of a horse with the added feature of a hooked beak on the end (Description repeated more than once)
And then again you had "Pterodactyl" reports, and the added finding that you could have two witnesses standing together and looking at the same thing: one will describe a bird with feathers and the other will describe a Pterodactyl.
Here is some information from the "Above Top Secret" message board that should be of interest:

Report of human faced big bird, page 1
I-Team: Expert trying to identify mysterious bird flying around S. Texas

Web Posted: 11/16/2007 12:42 AM CST

Joe Conger
KENS 5 Eyewitness News

More sightings of a huge flying creature, originally reported by KENS, have prompted an investigation to determine if it is a monster or myth.

"Even though it was dark, the thing itself was black. The blackest I'd ever seen," said Frank Ramirez.

Years ago, Ramirez thought he was after a prowler in the back of his mother's Southwest Side home. But what greeted him on the garage rooftop still gives him goosebumps now.

"That's when the thing up there turned to me, and it was in a perched state, and it started to turn," he said. "It started to move its arms and this giant blackness was just
coming out. At that point, I dropped the stick and I ran."

Ramirez sketched a drawing of the large, bird-like creature. The image is disturbing, and similar to dozens of sightings across San Antonio and South Texas.

"If you were to take a man's face and pull his chin down, just like a stretched face," said Ramirez.

"I was just terrified and as I was running. I just thought it was going to carry me off or something."

An earlier KENS story about a large, prehistoric-like bird drew more than 100,000 hits on More than a few people in San Antonio came forward to say they'd seen the creature, too.

One woman contacted KENS by e-mail, saying that
because of our story, she now knows she's not crazy.

KENS caught up with cryptozoologist Ken Gerhard at the Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge.

Gerhard recently wrote a book, called "Modern Sightings of Flying Monsters" on the large, dark birds.

"When investigating mystery animals, it's important to point out that there are vast areas of land, even here in South Texas, that remain uninhabited," said Gerhard. "If an animal like big bird does exist, it certainly needs some habitat, somewhere to hide."

The Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge has 88,000 acres, and the marshes and prairies are home to 413 species of birds, but no flying pterodactyls.

"Raptors of all kinds, from hawks to falcons, come throughout. Our most common is the Harris Hawk, " said Park Ranger Stacy Sanchez.
But even Sanchez admits that blogs spiked with reports this summer of something.

"People were posting about a very large, raptor-like bird, and they were talking about an 18-to-20-foot wingspan. I don't know ... It's kind of a myth," said Sanchez.

Critics say where's the proof? Eyewitness testimony without a feather or other body of evidence leaves these stories as they are — just stories.

"We know that it's rare, and we know that this area's been pretty popular hangout in the past," said Gerhard.

Gerhard has been installing cameras in Harlingen, where Guadalupe Cantu wants his big bird sighting documented and validated.

Back in San Antonio, Ramirez has mounted an outdoor
light to keep the creature at bay.

"I know what I saw. It took me more than a week to step out of this house. I wouldn't step foot out of this house," said Ramirez. "It had this very, very horrible demeanor-look on its face. Like I was lunch," he said.

On Nov. 21, Gerhard will be featured in a History Channel documentary called "Birdzilla." 
  1. video link
  2. video link
The description given by the guy who saw it just a few meters away actually reminds me of the mothman. How can a bird have a human face?
reply posted on 17-11-2007 @ 07:05 AM by Opulisum
Sounds like a case of the thunder birds, damn, as big as planes?

Whatever it is, I hope we find it soon. it would be a great find.


  1. I am the Frank Ramirez, the story in 2007, covered by Joe Conger was only limited to the editing they did, and to cut out what else was said. This incident happened Oct 1998 just before the 100 year flood hit our city. So my story was not based on the Mothman movie, but actually predating it 4 years before it was sensationalized in the movie. I am an educated man, and I have never changed my story, and have researched the event and have come to some amazing revelations, to even begin to understand it you must understand Childhood's End. Those who wish to know can reach me, if you understand the reference.

  2. Thank you Mr. Ramirez. I have every reason to believe your sighting had nothing to do with Mothman and every reason to believe you described what you saw precisely and accurately. I do understand Childhood's End, it is a clasic of the literature. Respectfully, I do not think myself there is any connection but I will say that you have every right to your own opinion and I shall not argue with you against that right under any circumstances. If that is your honest opinion then that is that.
    The first Mothman sightings were also decades before your sighting,in the Eastern part of the USA; but as I said I do not think there was any connection myself, and those that are trying to make the connection are forcing the matter. Under no circumstances do I say you were copying anybody else's report or that you were making it up.

    Dale A. Drinnon.

  3. Dale, do you think some big bird reports might be gigantic falcons?

  4. The terminology among raptors may be imprecise, but it is generally stated as the falcons are the smaller ones, haks are in the middle-sized range, anmd eagles are the big ones. You mean to say "Are some Thunderbird reports based on sightings of giant eagles?" and yes, a I am pretty certain that SOME are

  5. How big are these eagles? And are they more terrestrial than other eagles?

  6. The Washington eagle is a separate cryptid which has been reviewed on this blog before: it is an extremely large eagle with darker than ordinary plumage, and it has indeed been linked to certain "Thunderbird" sightings. And no, we are not talking about them being especially more terrestrial than other eagles.

  7. Well, are there any cryptid reports of gigantic carnivorous terrestrial birds (like the extinct terror birds)?

    1. In the case of "Big Birds" what you have is "Big Flying Birds on the ground", some of which were spoken of as if they were flightless predatory birds, but otherwise fell into the category of the winged Thunderbirds. That might mean mainly the younger ones growing up. I've mentioned the situation a few times on this blog before.


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