The Blackbird of Chernobyl is an internet legend about a creature allegedly seen in Ukraine around the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant in the weeks leading up to the Chernobyl Disaster on April 26th 1986. It's description is very similar to the famous Mothman creature.

The creature was allegedly humanoid in appearance and can be presumed to have been black or dark gray in coloration. It was claimed to also possess wings and glowing red eyes.

The Blackbird was supposedly sighted by several workers before they died. The story states that the Black Bird served as an omen of doom, warning the workers of the lethal radiation within the plant.

The Story:

The following is the commonly repeated online story that has gained popularity as internet-lore or net-lore.

Version One [ Earliest Known 2005 ] :

"Beginning in April of 1986, a rumor tore through the ranks of what was then a little know nuclear power plant located in the southern tier of the Ukraine - Chernobyl. In the days preceding the tragic meltdown, four Chernobyl employees had reported seeing what they claimed was a large, dark, headless man with gigantic wings and fire-red eyes.

... Chernobyl employees began to share unsettling and strangely similar experiences.

Some had been having horrifying nightmares, while others received threatening phone calls. According to accounts, some of these employees even mentioned their bizarre experiences to their superiors at the facility, but without evidence or any clear cut indication of what the problem may be, there was very little these officials could do - even had they been willing to take action.

On April 26, 1986, during a routine test of Reactor 4, the Chernobyl nuclear power plant was rocked by a massive explosion. Thirty people died that morning, followed by ten additional ten deaths due to radiation exposure. Over the next nine days the graphite of the reactor continued to burn, resulting in tremendous environmental damage and an untold number of radiation casualties over the next 17-years.

As the Soviet helicopters circled the smoldering plant, dropping over 500 pounds of clay, sand, lead, and other extinguishing chemicals on top of the flames, some of the surviving workers - who, at the sacrifice of their own lives, heroically struggled to prevent any further destruction - claimed to have witnessed what has been described as a '20-foot bird' gliding through the undulating tentacles of irradiated smoke, which continued to spew from the reactor."[1]

[2005 Post]
[2006 Discussion]

Version Two [ Earliest Known 2007 ] :

"Beginning in early April of 1986, the people in and around the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant began to experience a series of strange events revolving around sightings of a mysterious creature described as a large, dark, and mutated man with gigantic wings and piercing red eyes. People affected by this phenomena experienced horrific nightmares, threatening phone calls and first hand encounters with the winged beast which became known as the Blackbird of Chernobyl.

Reports of these strange happening continued to increase until the morning of April 26, 1986, when at 1:23 am, reactor 4 of the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant suffered a catastrophic steam explosion that resulted in a fire, which caused a series of additional explosions followed by a nuclear meltdown. The power plant, located near Pripyat, Ukraine, then part of the Soviet Union, spewed a plume of radioactive fallout which drifted over parts of the Western Soviet Union, Eastern and Western Europe, Scandinavia, the UK, Ireland and eastern North America. Large areas of Ukraine, Belarus and Russia were badly contaminated, resulting in the evacuation and resettlement of over 336,000 people. The Chernobyl Disaster, as the incident was dubbed, is considered the worst accident ever in the history of nuclear power.

Following the meltdown, and subsequent explosions and fires, Soviet helicopters were dispatched to the scene, equipped with special fire fighting gear, these helicopters circled the plant dropping clay, sand, lead and other extinguishing chemicals on to the burning facility. Most of the fire was put out by 5 am with the fire burning with in reactor 4 continuing to blaze for several hours after. The firefighters who responded were unaware of the nature of the fire, assuming that it was simply an electrical fire, and received massive overdoses of radiation leading to many of their deaths, including Lieutenant Vladimir Pravik, who died on May 9, 1986.

The workers who survived the initial blast and fire, that would later die of radiation poisoning, claimed to have witnessed what has been described as a large black, bird like creature, with a 20 foot wingspan, gliding through the swirling plumes of irradiated smoke pouring from the reactor. No further sightings of the Blackbird of Chernobyl were reported after the Chernobyl Disaster, leaving researchers to speculate just what haunted the workers of the plant during the days leading up to the disaster.


[One] theory, suggests that the Black Bird of Chernobyl was nothing more than the misidentification of the black stork, an endangered species endemic to southern Eurasia. The black stork stands nearly 3 feet tall and has a wing span of nearly 6 feet. This theory however fails to take into account the menacing phone calls and the the disturbing nightmares. Also the physical description given by the majority of eyewitnesses who actually saw the Black Bird of Chernobyl does not in anyway match the physical appearance of the Black Stork."[2][3]

[2007 Post]

[2010 Re-post]


The story doesn't seem to appear to be in any known newsprint or book publication, although it has become well known all across the internet as a sort of online folklore or "Net-lore". It is possibly just a creepy story that is inspired by already established trends.

The online history of the material being frequently re-posted is akin to oral story telling in it's finite nature. Just like with any folklore, each telling contributes to the common knowledge of the legend overtime. It's been featured on such popular paranormal sites as "AmericanMonsters" in 2005 and "PhantomsAndMonsters" in 2010.

It's become known as a "CreepyPasta" which is a form of copied and pasted online story that is widely circulated.[4] This gained it a noteworthy amount of popularity and public awareness. It was posted on The CreepyPasta Wiki in 2013.

[2013 Re-post] [ Note: The CreepyPasta Wiki contains fictional writing ]