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The Capybara and Other Out of Place Animals

If you’ve been on the internet at all the past few days, you’ve no doubt seen the stories about the capybara, the world’s largest rodent, roaming Paso Robles in California. Now, while there is nothing paranormal about this, it does bring to mind reports of other out of place animals that most “experts” dismiss and delegate to the realm of the paranormal (or the hallucinatory). But the truth is, animals have been reported in areas they shouldn’t be living in for many, many years.

  • Yes, I’m aware that I’m perpetuating the stereotype of people from Brooklyn being tough and confrontational. You got a problem with that?

    Panthers and Mountain Lions have been seen all over the United States, even in places where thay have been long thought to be extinct. I recently blogged about a cougar being killed in Connecticut, after they were declared extinct in the region.

  • Phantom kangaroos have been seen in the United States since the 1960s. The kangaroos, as most everyone knows, are indigenous to Australia, not suburban America.
  • Alligators in the Sewers is perhaps one of New York City’s most famous urban legends. And there is truth to it. Not sure if there still are crocs under the city streets, but I wouldn’t be surprised. I’ve heard some strange stories of what is actually right under our feet here in the Big Apple.
  • Monkeys and apes are quite often reported in the United States, and North America has no indigenous apes or monkeys (unless you count Bigfoot). These sighting go back to the 1800s, and are usually conveniently explained away by skeptics as circus escapees, as are most of the other animals on this list.
  • A Small Elephant was seen roaming the Bay Ridge section of Brooklyn, NY back in May of 1979, but was never captured. This story is one of my favorites, as I am a native of Bay Ridge and live there to this day.
Are all of these animals really roaming the American suburbs? Probably not. But in this day and age, and with more and more sightings of out of place animals caught on camera, it lends credence to the fact that in many of these cases, people might very well have seen exactly what they reported.