North America has it’s share of cryptozoology wonders. One such wonder is the story of the mini dinosaurs that are said to roam Colorado.
This mini dinosaur is said to walk on it’s hind legs, have small armlike appendages in the place of forelegs and stand 3 to 5 feet tall. They usually are spotted in wet environments and move quickly and gracefully.
When sightings of this cryptid began to come in, the first in Pagosa Springs, Co in 1982, then later in Pueblo, Co, a researcher from Minnesota by the name of Nick Sucik, who had been following up on sightings of “river dinosaurs” around the country decided to check the stories out.
Following up on a story in Unsolved Mysteries about a couple from Cortez Co when visiting Arizona, seen a small toy-looking dinsosaur, Sucik make contact with them. “It looked like a toy to them,” said Sucik so “No one took them seriously.”
Sucik placed classified ads seeking information from anyone who might have had an encounter with such a creature.
He recieved and email regarding a similar sighting froma a woman and her daughter who, back in 2001, were travelling through the Yellow Jacket, Co area when “Suddenly, this thing runs out. At first, they thought it was a young deer, because of its size,” said Sucik. He continued, “The woman described it as having a ling neck and skinny legs like a bird. However, it had no feathers, and it’s ‘arms’ seemed to go out of it’s upright neck rather than it’s body.
The woman said that the creature measured approximately 5 feet long from the neck to the tip of its tail. After arriving home, each of them drew a picture that turned out to show exactly the same creature. “It looked like a cross between a bird and a dinosaur.”
This sighting took place next to an irrigation creek, which is a common theme with these reports. “Every reference we’ve heard usually affiliates them with water. That’s where the term ‘River Dino” comes from.” Sucik stated.
Further research revealed to Sucik that this wasn’t the first time this creature was sighted in the area. A local had spotted a similar “River Dinosaur” in March or April of 1996. “I was sitting on the couch, and looking out the front door,” the observer who whishes to remain annonymous said. “I saw something, not a lizard, really, about 3 1/2 feet long and 3 1/2 feet high. It moved very fast. As far as I remember, there were only two legs that seemed to balance it.”
Her description of the creature was that it had a long tail that extended about 2 feet out from its body, moved quickly, with a cone shaped nose. It had also been near a pond.
She said “It was kind of unusual, I didn’t know if I was seeing things, or what. I never had anything like that happen before. I thought ‘Maybe it’s someones pet.’ I wasn’t frightened; I just thought it was unusual.”
After she did some research on her own, she contacted Jeff Thulin of the Reptile Reserve. He told her it could have been a monitor lizard, but a monitor lizard couldn’t survive the winters here.
Thulin said she wasn’t the only on to have reported sightings of a “large lizard running around. I don’t know any specifics at all exept that it’s large and looks out of place.” “It doesn’t match anything.” he said when trying to identify it.
Sucik says the creature could simply be a species that hasn’t been identified or could have escaped from an exotic pet dealer.