Thermopolis, Wyo. — A registered nurse says she saw a giant bird in Hot Springs County that he claims was not able to immediately identify.
The 35-year-old Oklahoma native, who asked to remain anonymous, told Cryptozoology News that he was driving north on Buffalo Creek Rd on his way to Thermopolis when he came upon the unusual sighting about a month ago.
“I observed a large dark raptor lift up off of the roadway,” she said. “I was struck by its large size and rapacious nature. It hit a ridge and soared up approximately 40 meters where it glided to a perch across the gorge to the east. It perched there broadside to me, approximately 300 meters away. After perching, I was able to glass it with 8x binoculars for a majority of the time. It would eventually fly directly up over the ridge just beyond the gorge where it was perched.”
The woman provided a detailed description of the alleged bird as she claims that she was able to observe it for about 3 minutes with her binoculars during day time.
“The animal was a booted eagle in general description. The head and body were dark mahogany to almost black. The head and bill were very formidable. The head was dark brown with a strikingly colored orange or yellow bill and cere. Additionally, the bill was long, deep-set, and sharply curved. It had feathers all the way down to its feet. It’s feet were very large and the same striking yellow color as the cere and bill. The body was large and robustly built giving the impression of great ability to provide lift. The tail feathers both dorsal and ventral sides were stark white. It had a minimum wingspan of 260 cm. As it lifted off away from me, its left wing tip was within a meter of the center of the roadway. It was perched on edge of the road upon a basketball-sized stone when first visible. The vehicle I was driving is approximately 170 cm wide and it spanned just over 1/3rd of the roadway at the point where the animal lifted off. Cere to vent length was 70-80cm.”
The woman says she is sure that this was the “largest flying bird” she had ever seen, other than Condors at the zoo, and that she is well versed in ornithology.
“There were a group of three Harris hawks I had noted in the same general area the day before. Harris hawks are not small birds, but they appeared tiny in my minds eye. I was seriously perplexed when I saw the bird since I couldn’t identify it as a golden eagle with any type of certainty,” she said.
In 1890, Arizona newspaper The Tombstone Epitaph reported that two ranchers had allegedly killed a “winged monster”, similar to an “alligator”, in the desert between the Whetsone and Huachuca mountains.
In August 2015, a man in Michigan claimed to have seen a “giant bird” with a 10-foot wingspan.
In July 2015, two people in Nevada reported seeing a creature that reminded them of a pterosaur, a flying reptile believed to have gone extinct about 65 million years ago.
Two weeks later, a minister and her daughter claimed to have seen an unidentified flying creature that looked like it was “straight out of Jurassic Park”.
In April 2015, a Louisiana man claimed to have seen a similar flying creature he believes was responsible for cow mutilations back in 1978.
Just a month later, another person came forward stating he had seen a dinosaur-like bird at a public park about 50 miles northwest of Tucson in 2002.
In October 2015, a California man snapped a photograph of what he believed to be a “prehistoric bird”.
In 1927, a similar event reportedly took place in the Australian town of Fernvale when a few giant birds visited the area, causing panic among the town’s residents.
Thunderbird, also known as Roc, is the nomenclature used by Native Americans to refer to bird-like creatures with reptile features that are believed to be related to the extinct pterosaurs.
The city of Thermopolis, from the Greek for Hot City, is known for its natural hot springs and is home to 3,000 people.