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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.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

MUIRHEAD`S MYSTERIES: LAKE AND SEA MONSTERS PART FIVE

Hi again.

Today in my final look at lake and sea monsters I`m going to travel to Australia. I have recently come across a collection of material on Aussie 'Loch Ness-type monsters and a sighting or rather viewing of a possible 'monster' in Loch Alexander within Darwin city council`s remit. This happened in mid-September 2009. Of course there is the Bunyip, but I will not be looking at it in today`s blog. For those interested in it there is good information on it in Healy and Cropper`s book Out of The Shadows (1)

Rex Gilroy is Australia`s authority on the Hawkesbury river monster(s) near Sydney: “Loch Ness-type monster`s are alive and swimming in the Hawkesbury River near Sydney. Controversial Katoomba naturalist Rex Gilroy has more than a score of carefully documented eyewitness accounts of strange reptile-like creatures seen in the river over the past 20 years. I have absolutely no doubt, after piecing together the evidence from all these independent sources,that what people actually saw was the plesiosaurus…

"Rex Gilroy also claims the monsters are alive and well in Lake Taupo,near Whaiteko, in New Zealand`s North Island. On a recent trip there, with his wife Heather, Gilroy photographed what he believes is a plesiosaurus…Both my wife Heather and myself saw a long dark brownish shape a few hundred metres from the shore where we standing, moving across the lake…At least 15 metres of body length could be detected but there was no body outline…Rex Gilroy has investigated several Maori legends about water monsters and says they tally with the scientific description of the plesiosaurus or `Nessie`. And there are also Aborignal legends about the monsters of the Hawkesbury, he says. But not all the `Nessie` long necks seen in the Hawkesbury River are gigantic creatures. “ Take the case of `John` who was fishing near Ettalong in March 1971 with his father. He caught a strange little beast, about 45 centimetres long with a long paddle-like tail and fins. It had a snake-like head,and opened its mouth and hissed when `John` and his father attempted to free it.

“They kept the strange beast for some days,hoping someone could identify it. No one did. It was only later when they saw pictures of a plesiosaurus in a book that they realised they might have thrown a baby one away- and so missed their chance of making world history.” [This is interesting. Isn`t there a story of a “baby” Cadbosaurus ?]…Gilroy`s efforts have earned him a place in Von Daniken`s books where his claims are accepted. He would like to hear from anyone who has seen anything mysterious in the Hawkesbury River". (2)

The magazine then gives Gilroy`s address, which I reproduce here but please bear in mind this is dated 1981:

REX GILROY
KEDUMBA NATURE DISPLAY
DEDUMBA EMPORIUM
ECHO POINT ROAD
KATOOMBA
NSW 2780

Gilroy will reappear in a minute but we need to take a quick look at the image caught on Google Earth by security guard Jason Clarke. “The images captured on Google Earth show a large brown object in the murky water at Lake Alexander ,where a giant cod bit a woman on the foot last month [can I have cod, toe and chips please,?? The toe`s salty enough ho ho-J R] …Security guard Jason Cooke said the 65ft oblong shape followed by thin strands is actually an image of the possibly mythical creature supposed to inhabit Loch Ness in the Scottish Highlands…We estimate our own “mystery” Loch object or beast to be approximately 5m long or wide…Two weeks ago Sydney cryptozoologist Rex Gilroy said he had sighted Sydney`s own “Nessie” claiming he witnessed a 12m giant surface in the Hawkesbury River. Through binoculars Mr Gilroy saw a dark shadow “with a longish neck 2 near Wiseman`s Ferry…After hearing of the Hawkesbury Monster in 1965 he found accounts dating back to pre-colonial times, with stories told of children being attacked by the “moolyewonk” When fishing boats were found overturned and the occupants missing in the 1980s,the Hawkesbury Monster was the prime suspect.”(3)

That`s all, folks. See you tomorrow. Richardo.

1. T.Healy and P.Cropper. Out of The Shadows. Mystery Animals of Australia. (1994) Bunyip. Chapter 6 is pp159-180
2. G.Lyons. `Nessie Down Under`. People. June 17th 1981. pp3-5
3. M.Cunningham. Satellite shots reveal a mysterious lake monster. http://www.ntnews.com/ [accessed November 24th 2009]

The Jam `Smithers Jones`. Their classic indictment of capitalism

Here we go again,it`s Monday at last,
He`s heading for the Waterloo line,
To catch the 8am fast,its usually dead on time,
Hope it isn`t late,got to be there by nine.
Pin stripe suit, clean shirt and tie,
Stops off at the corner shop,to buy The Times
`Good Morning Smithers-Jones`
`How`s the wife and home?`
`Did you get the car you`ve been looking for?`…

2 comments:

Dale Drinnon said...

Not only is there rock art in australia that exactly reproduces Plesiosaurian anatomy (and traditional reproductions of the same) but you get the same thing in New Zealand. This includes the precise details of the skeletal structure of the flippers, limb girdles and abdominal ribs, represented "X-ray" style, as well as representations of the living creatures intact.

That being said, the most common "Bunyips" in both areas are ordinary seals, but they range up to Elephant seals in size.

Dale Drinnon said...

Subsequent to the comment I posted, Lindsay posted a blog about the Australian Aboriginal depictions of Plesiosaurs and I followed with a posting on the similar pre-contact Maori rock-art depictions from New Zealand.