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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Thursday, October 28, 2010


As you all know, there is a doggie-shaped hole in our lives at the moment. Corinna and I are beginning to look around in search of the canid who shall become the CFZ Dog Mk4, and several things are becoming apparent. Firstly, all the animal shelters are full of animals of the same three breeds: border collies, Jack Russells and Staffies. And secondly, there is a serious dearth of mongrels. Now I, along with Dr Dolittle, have always rather preferred mongrels, thinking that they are generally more grounded and less highly strung than thoroughbreds.

In the last thirty years (and you must remember that the last time I went actively looking for a new dog was 1985 because Tessie just arrived one day and Corinna found Biggles) things have changed. Quite rightly, owners are encouraged to neuter their animals, but this means that birth control amongst the canid community is now pretty good. The only litters born are ones that have been planned, often for financial reasons, and therefore if Dr Dolittle were to start his Home For Crossbred Dogs today, it would probably remain empty!

1 comment:

Retrieverman said...

Oh I hope not.

Crossbreeds are easier to find than mongrels, because people generally don't breed from them or allow them to remain intact.

Lurchers are all crossbreeds or mongrels of some sort.

And most Jack Russells are, too. It's only the ones that are long-legged and KC registered that are purebred. And those are nothing more than the original white fox terrier without the long muzzle we see in the modern wire and smooth fox terriers.