Like every stretch of land on the planet, the state of Texas has its problems, its daily triumphs, its historical disasters and of course, its legends. Though Texans like to boast that everything is bigger in their state, they seldom point out that this also applies to the tales of weird supernatural creatures prowling the back alleys of the cities, dark forests of the east and empty deserts of the west. With so much land, it is hardly difficult to imagine that a number of weird creatures could live in this state. Here are but a few of the ones that have shown themselves to humans.

The Black Eyed Children are an urban legend that has grown in popularity since they were initially reported on the internet, and many feel that the story of these frightening children is little more than a creative writing exercise. However, the story actually began in Abilene, Texas and the person who the story can be traced back to is adamant that the creatures are real. Playing the role of hitchhikers and pan handlers, these strange creatures appear to be ordinary children with eyes of nothing but pure black that seem to appear and disappear, followed by a sensation of fear and the unnatural.

Of a less spectral nature are the large birds that have been sighted in the western desert portions of the state. Massive birds the size of human beings have been sighted in Texas practically since Europeans colonized it, and many were described as having wing spans longer than cars. There was an outbreak of sightings in 1976, with several people, including police officers, having seen the creature and tracks being found in near by areas. After a man in Raymondville was attacked by such a creature that tried to carry him off, sightings seem to have ended.

In the El Paso area, stories of a creature known as La Lechuza (which roughly translates to “the owl” in Spanish, though some call the creature “the Owl Witch”) have circulated for decades, if not centuries. The stories go that a long time ago in El Paso, locals of the time learned a woman was practicing sinister magic and killed her. But the story goes on to say that she came back to life and to this day roams the land. By day she seems to be a woman wearing only black, but at night she takes the form of a massive owl with the face of a woman. Similar to other southwest tales of skinwalkers, sightings of giant black birds by sober people make many wonder if the tales are true.