Big Cat? Nope!

Posted by: Nick Redfern on May 28th, 2012

Well, the latest report of a Scottish “big cat” turned out to be no such thing, after all. This story does, however, demonstrate how and why we need to be very careful about the way in which cases are highlighted before all the evidence is in. And, as Gordon Rutter demonstrates, the likelihood is that the animal in question was nothing stranger than an otter.

Of course, as you’ll see from the accompanying pictures, in one shot it does look rather cat-like. And, given that there have been some very good, credible reports of large cats in the area, then collectively this at least helps to explain why the discovery of a down to earth animal was turned into something very different – albeit innocently and briefly!

Nick Redfern About Nick Redfern
Punk music fan, Tennents Super and Carlsberg Special Brew beer fan, horror film fan, chocolate fan, like to wear black clothes, like to stay up late. Work as a writer.

One Response to “Big Cat? Nope!”

  1. alan borky responds:


    I must confess to being ever so slightly squeamish about the idea people mistook an otter for a ‘Big Cat’.

    Even if they’d never seen one before (courtesy of the likes of Ring of Bright Water) their peculiar galloping rippling sinuous motion often very close to the ground should’ve put them in mind of anything except a cat (a baby Nessie or the lovechild of a snake and a rat maybe – but not a cat).

    That’s the problem with language though.

    I maintain when people refer to their animals being attacked by say chupacabras they don’t always mean this literally but’re alluding to certain anomalous features of the attack such as unusual wounds or characteristics suggestive of pointless slaughter.

    Ditto when they speak of their animals being completely drained of blood they often really mean a normal predator would’ve left far more blood behind rather than ALL the blood’s LITERALLY gone.

    ‘Chupacabras’ may even be a generic way of refering to unknown supernatural agencies in general.

    [Astronauts often refer to their craft as ‘birds’ but I don’t think this means Neil and Buzz fed Apollo 11 budgie seed before they took off and the majority of vacuum cleaners aren’t made by Hoover but that doesn’t stop people referring to ‘hoovering up’].

    ‘Big Cat’ as the latest catchphrase or meme therefore becomes a convenient synonym for “weirdest damn thing I ever saw!”

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