Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) are still on the track, and have been since 1992. But as if chasing unknown animals wasn't enough, we are involved in education, conservation, and good old-fashioned natural history! We already have three journals, the largest cryptozoological publishing house in the world, CFZtv, and the largest cryptozoological conference in the English-speaking world, but in January 2009 someone suggested that we started a daily online magazine! The CFZ bloggo is a collaborative effort by a coalition of members, friends, and supporters of the CFZ, and covers all the subjects with which we deal, with a smattering of music, high strangeness and surreal humour to make up the mix.

It is edited by CFZ Director Jon Downes, and subbed by the lovely Lizzy Bitakara'mire (formerly Clancy), scourge of improper syntax. The daily newsblog is edited by Corinna Downes, head administratrix of the CFZ, and the indexing is done by Lee Canty and Kathy Imbriani. There is regular news from the CFZ Mystery Cat study group, and regular fortean bird news from 'The Watcher of the Skies'. Regular bloggers include Dr Karl Shuker, Dale Drinnon, Richard Muirhead and Richard Freeman.The CFZ bloggo is updated daily, and there's nothing quite like it anywhere else. Come and join us...

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Monday, May 25, 2009


This set of pictures has been doing the rounds lately. It is supposedly of a dead mermaid found somewhere in the neotropics, but - despite being considerably more convincing than either the "Water Blackfella" picture or the ridiculous Quatari `goblin` - I am sure that I do not need to point out that this is a fake.


However, I am getting quite interested in the aetiology of hoaxes. This one turned up twice in the same day in my e-mail inbox. Firstly on a crypto newsgroup, and secondly as an advert for a dating agency. You figure?

As I was posting them here, Emma was looking over my shoulder and said "Eeew its the nasty mermaid. That's just wrong" and shuddered. Apparently these pictures had been prominently displayed on one of the Mysterious Universe websites and had given her "the creeps".

But where did they come from? Whose logo is that in the bottom corner? When and why were they made? And why has it turned up now? I am intrigued.


stormwalkernz said...

this first picture has been around for quite some time as I have seen it quite often. The other pictures however do have me quite stumped as I have not seen him before. This one is a bit of a puzzle as if it is a taxidermy composite it is certainly extremely well done.
I believe the story behind this particular creature is that it was washed up after the Sumatra earthquake and tidal wave. At least that was the initial history.

CFZ: Cryptozoology Online said...


Oh yes, that narsty merman again!

We had a go-round about that one a while back: Vladimir (in Russia) said it was washed up in the USA and I assured him that the media in this country said no such a thing. I also noted several physical peculiarities about the taxidermist's patchup work such as the body axis of the tail part as turned at right angles to the body axis of the torso part, and the entire thing done all over in a white wash to match it up better. But I still do not know who was originally responsible for it. It is basically a larger version of the Feejee Mermaid.

sammywise said...

This has been around a long time, the story I heard was that it washed up in Florida, it is a gaffe, a neat fake

Gordon said...

I think it's by Juan Cabanos.