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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Saturday, January 09, 2010


Woolsery is a very strange place at times. About a mile and a half south of the village is an area of Forestry Commission woodland called Powler's Peice.

I have always liked it down there; there are deer a-plenty; both roe and red (and the occasional muntjac); and there are several small ponds that are chocker with palmated newts every spring. But it is undoubtedly freaky.

It has a very strange atmosphere, and Corinna has always refused to ever go there on her own. On several occasions when she has been walking the dog down there with the girls she has felt the sensation of "being watched" and the dog has stopped dead in his tracks in exactly the same place.

Yesterday afternoon she, Shosh and Gavin were taking the dog for his afternoon run (it is far too slippery for me to even risk it) and deep in the woods on one of the rides, traversed only by the occasional Forestry Commission worker and the most intrepid of dog walkers, she found a small, squat, and very ritualistic looking snowman. Or rather snow-woman, because her above-the-waist secondary sexual characteristics were clearly visible. It is only the lack of anything below the waist that stops me labelling her a snowy sheela-na-gig.

It is hard not to see her as a depiction of one of the tree spirits who guard the wood and make visitors feel so uncomfortable.

Very strange.

Even Biggles felt compelled to make several offerings to this snowy dryad (note the lower picture and the yellow stains on her right hand side in the upper).

1 comment:

Dale Drinnon said...

Biggles, being a military-type dog, knows the old adage: If it don't outrank you, piss on it. If it outranks you, SALUTE IT!