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Volume 8
Number 11
March 12, 2003

Editor: Joseph Trainor

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Police in Argentina are combing the rain forests of southern Salta province in an effort to capture the large hairy hominid reported in the area in recent weeks.

"A team composed of over 20 officers from Rosario de la Frontera and Metan," in Argentina's Salta province, "some 15 mounted rangers, 12 members of the Ciudad Termal Volunteer Fire Brigade," plus local media personnel, "is covering every square foot of a densely wooded area where eyewitnesses claim having seen less than 72 hours ago the strange humanoid creature that has startled residents of the province's southern reaches."

"The Ucumar, as the citizenry has incorrectly christened it, would be a 2-meter (6 feet, 6 inches) tall biped, with a hairy body, long arms and ears, and fierce carnivorous habits."

"The true ucumar, also known as the spectacled bear, is the only South American plantigrade, measuring no more than 1.2 meters (4 feet) tall. There is no evidence that it exists in the country (Argentina), although there are species in captivity in Bolivia and Ecuador."

"The operation combing the woods for the strange beast is under the command of Sheriff Rene Tacacho and Jose Exequiel Alvarez, commander of the Volunteer Fire Brigade and the Juan Carlos Rivas Archaeological and Paleontological Research Group."

"The expedition aimed at capturing the strange specimen began on Friday, February 28, 2003 at 9 a.m. without police support, which was accepted yesterday (Saturday, March 1, 2003) in the likelihood that the humanoid may in fact be prowling the area. The fact is that the participants in the search, unarmed, heard strange howls and found prints that evidenced the recent transit of a hairy, two-legged animal at around one o'clock in the morning."

"Miguel Moreno, a cameraman at a Rosario TV station, said, 'At one point, we heard the crackling of leaves and saw a silhouette which vanished quickly into the dense vegetation. Local dogs--a pack of over 30--began barking furiously. One of the hounds went after 'the thing,' and we heard it growl in the darkness, but then there was silence and (the dog--S.C.) was never seen again.'"

"The search area is located in the vicinity of the municipal garbage dump, 3 kilometers (2 miles) from the center of" Rosario de la Frontera, "where there are trees, overgrown pastures and all manner of shrubbery."

"'We were unarmed and did not dare go deeper into the area for fear of an eventual misfortune resulting from an attack,' said Jose Exequiel Alavarez, who requested police support in order to continue."

"His request was granted yesterday (Saturday, March 1, 2003) when 20 officers from Rosario, reinforced by personnel from Regional Unit 3, headquartered in Metan, joined the search." (See the Argentinian newspaper El Tribuno for March 2, 2003, "Expedition sets out to find elusive creature," and for March 7, 2003, "Authorities issue orders to 'find and capture strange animal.'" Muchas gracias a Scott Corrales, Gloria Coluchi y Christian Hernan Quintero para esos articulos de diario.)

(Editor's Comment: And welcome to Creatures Rule! Week at UFO Roundup. Argentina isn't the only South American country with a hairy hominid on the rampage. Keep reading...)


On Sunday, February 23, 2003, two brothers, "Francisco and Jose Carrizo, reported seeing a strange humanoid creature as they were coming home in Calama," a small city in northern Chile.

Calama has been the site of over 300 UFO sightings since 2001.

According to the Carrizo brothers, "the creature was dark, and it looked more like a humanoid shadow rather than a humanoid being."

"'It was on top of the roof. It made a loud noise when it dropped to the lower roof,' said Francisco, 'Our mother was very frightened because she had been listening to it running around on the roof for a few minutes before we arrived.'"

"Jose mentioned that they live in an area where animal mutilations have occurred before."

"Previously, and in the same area," coal miner Luis Sepulveda "saw another strange creature. On November 28, 2002, at approximately 3:30 a.m., Sr. Sepulveda and his co-workers were preparing their tools and mining equipment before going to a mine known as La Banda, located about 40 meters (132 feet) from the Rio Loa."

"'Since there were no bathrooms available because we hadn't set up our campsite yet, I had to go into the woods to urinate behind the trees. I walked about 15 meters (50 feet) into the woods. The area was not completely dark. There seemed to be a little bit of sunlight. Suddenly, about 3 meters (10 feet) away from me, out of the corner of my eye, I saw what appeared to be a small tree moving from side to side, as if the wind was hitting it. But then I realized that there was no wind at all. Therefore, the tree shouldn't have been moving.'"

"'I decided to turn around to take a better look at it, but what I saw was so eerie and bizarre that I think I will never forget it. It was no tree at all. It was a dark hairy creature mimicking a tree, with its arms wide open and moving its upper body from side to side just like trees do,' said Sepulveda." (Muchas gracias a Jaime Ferrer y Mario Andrade del Centro UFO de Calama y tambien Dr. Virgilio Sanchez Ocejo de Miami UFO Center para esos informes.)


"At least three people have been killed and 16 others severely injured by a mysterious wild beast running wild in a mountainous region of Malawi," a small country in south-central Africa.

"The rampaging beast in Dowa district, some 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the capital, Lilongwe, has sent at least 4,000 people fleeing four villages to seek refuge at a community hall at the district headquarters."

"Parks and Wildlife Officer Leonard Sefu said his department believes the mysterious beast could be a rabid hyena but said it was strange for a hyena to terrorise whole villages without being cornered."

"He said his department is studying the pattern of the maimed people to establish what animal it could be."

"Dr. Matius Joshua, the Dowa District Health Officer, said Wednesday afternoon (March 5, 2003) that two old women and a three-year-old baby died when the beast crushed their skulls and ate their intenstines and private parts."

"All attempts to hunt and kill the animal have so far failed."

"A similar beast struck the area in August (2002) last year. Even though the animal was eventually shot dead by park rangers, confusion over its identity remained."

"Dr. Joshua said the 16 victims admitted into hospital following the latest attacks sustained various appalling injuries with some of them completely maimed and disfigured."

"Dowa District Commissioner Charles Kalemba said the district administration is currently feeding the homeless people but more resources are needed as the rural district is unable to cope with the unexpected number of displaced (people.)"

"In August last year (2002), a mystery beast killed five people and maimed over 20 others before game rangers and paramilitary police managed to gun it down. But, according to Dowa District Information Officer Auley Mwawembe, people at the time failed to distinguish what sort of animal it was." (See BBC World News for March 5, 2003. Merci beaucoup a Robert Fischer pour ces nouvelles.)

(Editor's Comment: I've been trying to come up with a striking and dramatic name for this creature. Unfortunately, the only world-famous hyena is Hardy-Har- Har, the cartoon sidekick of Lippy the Lion. That just doesn't cut it. Can you imagine this line in a Universal horror movie? "When the clock strikes twelve, and the moon is full and bright, it is the destiny of the Ashcroft men to become...Hardy-Har-Har!?" Yeeesh! So it's time for a Name the Were-Hyena contest. Let's see what kind of name you readers come up with. Send your ideas to UFO Roundup at .)


On Wednesday, February 26, 2003, at 4:30 p.m., Andrew B. was in Priory Park, Reigate, Surrey, UK when he noticed a UFO approaching from the east. Andrew reported, "Me and my friend Simon were in the park playing football ( soccer in the USA--J.T.) when we saw this 'craft' fly across the sky in front of us. At first we dismissed it as a low- flying model aircraft. But after examining the speed of the object, we realised that this could not be so."

Andrew described the UFO as "silver, flattened, metallic. It seemed to be a flattened cylindrical shape. It was 100 to 150 feet (30 to 45 meters) off the ground, extremely fast, for it crossed the sky from one horizon to the other in 20 seconds or so."

On Monday, February 3, 2003, at 9:30 p.m., Matt B. was in Oldbury, Birmingham West, Midlands, UK when he saw a UFO approach from the southwest. Matt reported, "I had just been to the local store. I was looking up into the sky when I thought I saw a jet, but there was no sound of any engines. There were two white lights with a black cylinder shape. Then the lights turned clockwise slowly. Then one light shot off at (high) speed southwest. It was slow at first, then really fast, then it disappeared." (Email Form Reports)


Residents of Lismore, a small city in Australia's state of New South Wales, spotted UFOs flying over the area last week.

"A UFO was sighted near Lismore. The odd craft was said to be cigar-shaped with a light at each end. The object was heading from east to west. Sighting of the object lasted for seven seconds before it disappeared out of sight."

"A daylight sighting of a missile-shaped object at four degrees" above the horizon "was seen by a lady while waiting for a traffic light to change at Ballan Street in Lismore."

In the state of South Australia, the Southern Times- Messenger "reported a UFO sighting at Christie's Beach. A witness said she 'saw the same thing a bit later at 11 p.m. at O'Sullivan's Beach. The object was bigger than a star. It flashed three times in different locations and moved faster than a plane.'" (See The Northern Mercury of Lismore, N.S.W. for March 2, 3002. Many thanks to John Hayes and Diane Harrison of the Australian UFO Research Network for forwarding these newspaper reports.)

(Editor's Comment: Curiously, the UFOs appeared in Lismore just after the twenty-fifth anniversary of the city's "glowing cross" phenomenon. For more on the Lismore cross, see UFO Roundup, volume 8, number 9 for February 26, 2003, "1907: A strange death at Mullumbimby," page 10; and volume 8, number 10 for March 5, 2003, "1978: The Lourdes of Australia?" page 8.)


On Wednesday, February 19, 2003, "a luminous UFO was videotaped by a family living in the barrio San Luis (neighborhood) in the city of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, the largest city in Spain's Canary Islands, located off the coast of Morocco.

The videotape was aired on an evening news show on Spain's Antena 3 network, hosted by TV journalist Luis Javier de San Borodin.

"The family observed the strange luminous object the evening of February 19, and it hovered over the sea (Atlantic Ocean--J.T.) for around an hour. According to the eyewitnesses, the UFO remained immobile in the sky during this time and then disappeared completely." (See NotiOVNI for March 2, 2003. Muchas gracias a Daniel Munoz para esas noticias.)


The Distrito Federal in central Brazil is now in the midst of a UFO flap.

The first sighting in the D.F., which is home to Brasilia, the capital of the large South American country, took place on Tuesday, February 4, 2003 "when a UFO hovered 30 meters (100 feet) away from a witness."

Four days later, on Saturday, February 8, 2003, "a silver UFO 3 meters (10 feet) in diameter was hovering in the air" in a rural district of the Distrito Federal "just a few meters off the ground."

On Saturday, March 1, 2003, "at 10:15 p.m., Aurezio Galo, 33, who lives in Gama Leste, D.F., (Brazil), 45 kilometers (27 miles) east of Brasilia, was looking to the sky, searching for stars, when he saw a strange light flying slowly. He then fetched his binoculars to observe more clearly and saw that the light was actually a round object with red, orange and white colors around it. It seemed that the object pulsated and rotated on its (own) axis at the same time. Aurezio called in his older son, Pedro Luiz, age 9, to see the UFO also. Both observed the movements of the object until it disappeared from view. The event lasted about four minutes. According to the witnesses, the object did not emit any sound nor did it alter its speed."

On Saturday, March 8, 2003, at around 6:30 p.m., "a UFO was sighted in Maceio," a large port city in the state of Alagoas in northern Brazil.

"The UFO crossed the sky over the city, heading east towards the South Atlantic. Moving at high speed, it presented a luminous aura that pulsed at regular intervals of once every 10 seconds. At the heart of the aura was a misty blue and yellow object of limited intensity. The UFO moved in a zigzagging trajectory and remained in view for approximately one minute."

Maceio is located about 1,050 kilometers (630 miles) northeast of Rio de Janeiro. (Muito obrigado a Thiago Luiz Tichetti e Paulo Silva Countinho para esos casos.)


On Tuesday and Wednesday nights, February 25 and 26, 2003, four luminous UFOs hovered repeatedly over the Parque Chacabuco in Buenos Aires, the capital of Argentina.

"The first sighting was on Tuesday, February 25, at 8:52 p.m.," ufologist Ricardo E. D'Angelo reported. "The UFOs appeared from and then departed to the southeast, over the Rio de la Plata. The maneuvers of the UFOs lasted all night."

"I saw intense flashes--pulses of blue light--from my apartment balcony, which seemed to be directly above the Parque Chacabuco. During the second night, Wednesday, February 26, blue flashes were seen during a period of five to six hours. On this occasion, the four UFOs retreated due south."

On Thursday, March 6, 2003, at 7:35 p.m., a UFO was seen in Rufino, a town in Argentina's Santa Fe province, located 200 kilometers (120 miles) west of Buenos Aires.

"Several individuals who were at a motorcycle racetrack at the Ben Hur Sports Club, located in southeastern Rufino, noticed a strange white light moving over the city from the south and heading northward. Witnesses testified that the light was traveling lower than the flight altitude at which aircraft normally fly over the city. It was brighter than a star and traveled horizontally with regard to the ground at high speed. At a given moment during the trajectory, it vanished." (Muchas gracias a Ricardo E. D'Angelo, Norberto Mollo y Juan Jose Mecchi para esos informes.)


"Northern Chile has begun witnessing a new wave of UFO sightings."

"On Sunday, March 2, 2003, many people on the streets of Calama," a small city north of Antofagasta, "saw a bright object fly across the city."

"Another similar object appeared the following morning," Monday, March 3, 2003. "Many skeptics believed that it was a weather balloon. However, this object was very bright and appeared to suddenly change speed and direction."

Calama was the site of hundreds of UFO sightings in 2001 and 2002.

"The first flying object was seen in different parts of Calama, as well as in (nearby) San Pedro de Atacama, near Ruta (Route) CH-25. Many residents saw the bright object near the airport, flying so fast that it 'disappeared.' Neverthless, the object reappeared again several times and in different locations. Many eyewitnesses had time to get their binoculars to get a better look at it."

"A local television channel began broadcasting live images of the object at approximately 3:30 p.m." on Sunday, February 23, 2003. The live video coverage ended at 5:30 p.m."

"A young boy said that he saw a similar object on Tuesday, February 11, 2003. He described the UFO as looking 'like an eye.' The boy claims that he saw the bright object as he was standing outside of his house. According to him, the sighting lasted three minutes. During an interview with the Centro UFO de Calama (Spanish for Calama UFO Center--J.T.), the boy indicated that the object flew at a slow speed from north to south. The object later disappeared into what he called an S-shaped cloud or contrail."

"On Saturday, February 22, 2003, at 6:55 a.m., while waiting at a bus stop, two labor contractors saw yet another similar object. One of the gentlemen, Omar Acevedo, was interviewed by the Centro UFO de Calama. He described the object as 'flying very slow.' It was seen at about 10 kilometers (6 miles) from the hills on the west side of Calama. According to Acevedo, it was a yellow sphere which moved from south to north in an area where no commercial airplanes fly. He is absolutely sure it was no airplane."

Also that Saturday, "at 3 p.m., Roberto Troncoso Rodriguez, 20, an asphalt plant worker, reported seeing another bright object on the south side of Calama. He was among ten other eyewitnesses at the asphalt plant who reported seeing the same object. Roberto said the silver- colored object appeared to be 'spinning on its own axis.' The object stayed spinning in the same direction for a few minutes--without traveling in any direction."

"On Monday, February 24, 2003, at 9:35 p.m., a UFO described as 'spherical in shape and bright yellow' but 'did not appear to emit flashes or any kind of light patterns' was seen near the Calama Hills by a warehouse employee named Enrique Cortez. However, this particular object seemed to change colors from red to yellow approximately every 10 seconds." (Muchas gracias a Jaime Ferrer y Mario Andrade del Centro UFO de Calama y tambien a Dr. Virgilio Sanchez Ocejo de UFO Miami para esos informes.)


"Hundreds of people have flocked to a church in India to witness a painting of Jesus weeping tears of blood."

"The picture belongs to a 14-year-old girl from the village of Amboura-Camurlim in South Goa," located 225 kilometers (135 miles) south of Mumbai, India's largest city, "who first saw it weeping in her bedroom cupboard."

"Her family alerted the parish priest who transferred the portrait to the village church."

"Since then the locals have queued up (lined up in the USA--J.T.) at the church to take a look at the portrait."

Roman Catholic "Church spokesman Father Olavo Pereira told the (newspaper) Deccan Chronicle: 'The Church cannot simply exploit the situation. We have to be careful and verify it before we make a decision.'"

"'Visions are generally subjective and need more careful examination. The world-famous pilgrimage sites of Fatima (Portugal) and Lourdes in France, where similar visions appeared, took years before they were finally accepted,'" Father Pereira said. (See the Deccan Chronicle for March 3, 2003. Merci beaucoup a Robert Fischer pour cette article de journal.)


"All six tires from the shuttle Columbia have been found, revealing especially intense damage to the left wheels--a finding that could indicate the orbiter's destruction stemmed from problems in the left wheel well, investigators said Tuesday," March 4, 2003.

"Board members said they are examining the debris for clues about how the shuttle melted and sprayed molten metals as it broke up. Chemical analysis has found more molten aluminum on the orbiter's left side than on the right, consistent with other evidence that the breakup started in that area of the shuttle."

"Investigators also said the shuttle's left tires sustained more damage than those on the right--a finding that could mean a leak of superhot air caused the left wheels to blow up."

"'The blowing of these tires would likely have been a very catastrophic event, so it couldn't have occurred until very late (in the flight--J.T.),' investigation board member Roger Tetreault said Tuesday at a news conference in Houston."

"The charred state of much of the wreckage is making it difficult to determine what might have caused the accident and what was simply a result of the (space) ship's disintegration. Although investigators said it is unclear what caused the damage they are seeing, the debris should help pinpoint where hot plasma first breached the shuttle's heat-resistant tiles."

"'What we have to do is follow the heat,' Tetreault said, 'Our job is just beginning.'"

"One focus of the investigation is a piece of debris from the frame of the shuttle's left landing gear door that could reveal whether superhot air breached the wheel well during flight."

"Tetreault also described deposits of aluminum and stainless steel found on the inside of carbon panels that were meant to protect the leading edge of the shuttle's left wing." (See the Chicago Tribune for March 5, 2003, "Tires leave clues on shuttle breakup," page 5.)

(Editor's Note: UFO Roundup first looked into the possibility of a tire explosion causing the spacecraft disaster immediately after the loss of Columbia on Saturday, February 1, 2003. See UFO Roundup, volume 8, number 6 for February 5, 2003, "Accident or shootdown? The Columbia mystery," page 4.)


Italian author Marcello Coppetti, 76, passed away recently. Sr. Coppetti was a lifelong editor, journalist and "an author of many books about political affairs, secret agents, Freemasonry and mysteries in Italy."

Twenty-five years ago, Sr. Coppetti began writing about UFOs, collaborating with the Italian magazine Il Giornale dei Misteri "in which he engaged in a long series of articles" insisting that "UFOs were secret weapons."

In 1979, he published his first book on the subject, UFO: Arma segreta (Publicazione Mediterranee, Milano).

A year later, in 1980, he published a second book, UFO in Italia (Boncampagni, Conti, Lamperi e Sani, Milano), documenting sightings in Italy throughout the centuries. (See the Italian newspapers La Nazione and Il Resto di Carlino for February 15, 2003. Grazie a Edoardo Russo e Renzo Cabassi di CISU per questo rapporto.)

From the UFO Files...


The year 1948 is usually remembered as the end of the "Roswell flap," with its legions of silver discs crossing the skies worldwide. But some strange entities were sighted during that period, too, and none stranger than the trio who appeared in Longview, Washington state, USA.

On April 9, 1948, James Pittman, Mrs. Viola Johnson and several other workers trooped out of the laundry building where they were employed. People lit their cigarettes or dropped a dime in the Coca-Cola machine, eager to savor their fifteen-minute break.

Suddenly, Pittman and Mrs. Johnson heard "a sound like an airplane engine." Looking up, they saw three humanoid forms flying in formation over Longview. The "men" had angelic wings sprouting from their shoulder blades. But unlike an angel's wing, these were dark, not white.

"The witnesses could not make out arms but saw dangling legs and thought that the aerobats were attired in dark flying suits with helmets."

"The (three) aviators then circled the city of Longview several times."

Pittman and Mrs. Johnson described the trio as "birdmen."

Another witness said they reminded him "of that Hawkman guy in the funnybooks."

The "birdmen" did not interact with the people on the ground but merely flew out of visual range.

Longview, Wash. is on Highway 4, on the north bank of the Columbia River, located 45 miles (72 kilometers) north-northwest of Portland, Oregon and about 40 miles (64 kilometers) south of Chehalis, Wash. (See the book Weird America by Jim Brandon, E.P. Dutton, New York, N.Y., 1978, page 232.)

Well, that's it for this week. Join us next time for more UFO, Fortean and paranormal news from around the planet Earth, brought to you by "the paper that goes home- -UFO Roundup." See you next week!

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