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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Wednesday, September 22, 2010


It is a recurring paradigm in contemporary forteana that whenever an unfortunate creature dies, falls in the water, and is washed up, hairless and bloated by decomposition it is hailed as a monster.

Well not, according to this story sent to us by our favourite Australian news-sleuth Rebecca (I am doing my best to stop calling her Ruby) Lang. What is most ignominous is that the whole sordid affair took place in Bude, seventeen miles away from the CFZ HQ, and we have to get a second-hand report from the Antipodies.

"A TV station in Britain has been left red-faced after mistakenly reporting that a polar bear had washed up on a beach in southern England. Presenter Naomi Lloyd astonished viewers of the ITV network's West Country Breakfast bulletin with a report that a polar bear had mysteriously travelled several thousand kilometres from the Arctic Circle to surface on the shores of Cornwall. "A walker in Cornwall has caught an extraordinary sight on camera. A polar bear has washed up on a beach near Bude," Miss Lloyd told viewers."

A polar bear? Could such a thing be? Well despite walruses and several other Arctic pinnipeds having turned up in British waters on occasion, and despite a comic strip in Look and Learn magazine during the early 1970s (if anyone can find the name for me I would be monumentally grateful), which featured such a thing as part of its storyline, no polar bears have ever (as far as I am aware) swum or drifted into British waters of their own volition.

It was a cow, with coat bleached white by the sun and sea. Never mind. Better luck next time.



Markus said...

This was not the first time that a carcass of an "unknown" animal (Trunko, several pseudo-plesiosaurs) was labelled as "polar bear". Something to remember dealing with "polar bear" carcasses in other cases... ;)

shiva said...

Doesn't look much like either a cow or a bear to me - my guess would have been something much smaller (beaver, badger, etc). I guess this is a rare case of photo perspective tricking the observer the opposite way to the usual with cryptid photos - ie. making the "mystery" creature look much smaller than it is rather than much bigger...