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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In between each episode of OTT, we now present OTTXtra. Here are the last three episodes:


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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

WEIRD WEEKEND 2010: The latest news

* The cocktail party will go on as normal on Thursday night. We have two marquees this year, and games for the kids as well as champagne and margaritas! If it is peeing down with rain then we shall postpone the children's games and have them over the weekend in the hall. The party itself will continue, indoors if needs be, but hopefully not, because the house isn't that big....

* There has been another line-up change. Sadly, Sheridan Thayer has been taken ill and has been forced to cancel. Her shoes have been ably filled by Mike Hallowell doing a talk called 'The Kapree: the Strange Tale of Cornwall's Out-of-Place, Cigar-Smoking Philippino Cryptid.'

With only a few days to go, if you haven't done so already, now might be a good time to buy your tickets to the best crypto-fortean event of the year....

Buy Your Tickets here


As you know, Oll has been working on the archiving project since early February 2009 and he is now working on a general mish-mash of a section known as `General Forteana`. This nineteenth collection once again really is a general mishmash of completely uncategoriseable stuff, including a woman beaten to death for being posessed by a demon, the liquefying blood of Saint Janarius, historical revisionism and Jesse James, a tunnel inside the sphynx, and tons more. It doesn't get much better than this. Good stuff.




I hope you approve of it (and I hope you hear from lots of new people because OF it).

I just wish my health and circumstances would permit me to travel TO it...I'd love to come there and just bask in the ambience and wander about and see all that is there.


Phil Mantle, a mate of mine for nearly fifteen years and editor of the excellent new magazine UFO Matrix wrote to me with this account of an encounter with a flying snake-like beast in Canada:

On August 7th 2003, while on vacation at camp with family (since 1994) I had decided to take a late shower-near 1:00 am. Camp at that time of night is just the sounds of insects and frogs. I was at the back of the washrooms where the shower stall rooms are located. While standing near a picnic table having a smoke, a strange snake like creature 'flies' pass me. The closeness would be about 6-7 feet away from me. It was about 5-6 feet above the ground. Due to its speed and closeness, along with one single light on a pole for illumination, helped me identify a creature not yet catalogue in this world of today.

read on

RICHARD FREEMAN: Giant Crocodiles

A recent story and photograph have emerged from Australia's Northern Territory. A 6.5m crocodile was supposedly shot and killed in Manangoora, about 600 miles southwest of Darwin in 1997. However, a dispute over the picture has now broken out. Chas Cole, from Katherine, Queensland, has claimed that the photograph was taken just four years ago and said the image, which has become popular on the internet, came from Queensland.

"It was a friend of mine, who was a structural engineer, who took the photo," he said. "It tangled himself on the cables and drowned to death."

Mr Cole said his friend took the photo halfway between Normanton and Karumba in North Queensland. Regardless of its origin the accompanying photo shows a very big Indo-Pacific croc next to a pickup truck with a little girl in the foreground.

This could be a case of perspective making it look bigger, though it does look like a big croc. If it was one of three 22-footers and was shot in 1997 then the other two would be 23-24 foot now and weigh at least two tons apiece. One shot in Queensland in the ‘50s was 28 feet. There is a giant in a swamp in the Philippines reckoned to be 30 feet. Big crocs like this are rare; global treasures that need to be protected.

A project I’d like to undertake if I had the cash would be to visit all the locations in Africa, India, Indonesia and Australia with reports of giant crocs and try to film them. As well as the Philippine 30-footer there are supposed to be 23 footers in Malawi/ Burundi , Orissa, India and the island of Ternate in Indonesia. Even bigger ones are spoken of in the Congo and New Guinea.

Gustave, the notorious man-eater of Lake Tanganyika, is reckoned to be 23 feet long, and Orissa in India is home to a population of giants. Bhitarkanika Park has eight Indo-Pacific crocodiles of 16 to 18 feet, while five were reportedly having a length of 18 to 20 feet, and three measured above 20 feet. The largest is 23 feet long. A man-eater was shot dead near Dhamara during 1926 and later its skull was preserved by the then Kanika King. The crocodile experts said as per the parameters, the crocodile would be about 25 feet since the size of the skull was measured one seventh of the total length of the body.

After the case of the 30 foot giant that killed a girl in the Agusan swamp in the Philippines, Mindanao Magazine printed the following article which I reproduce here in full.

Eyewitnesses Claimed Sightings of Giant Crocodiles in Agusan Marsh

by Ben Serrano
March 14, 2009
San Marcos, BUNAWAN, Agusan del Sur – Residents here mostly evacuees from floating community of Lake Mihaba today claimed to have personally witnessed sightings of giant crocodiles other than the 40-foot long and one and a half meter wide water crocodile that attacked and killed a twelve year old girl last March 7.

“We have seen at least three others but of smaller sizes maybe 28 to 26 feet long and a meter in width water crocodiles within Lake Mihaba and nearby areas of the Agusan Marsh”, floating community resident Mrs. Emma Calderon and Manobo fishermen Pepito Barrios, 32 and Orwin Ruiz, 57. The three were among the more than 100 floating Lake Mihaba community residents who evacuated to Barangay San Marcos for fear of another crocodile attack that already victimized and decapitated a 12 year old female student from Mihaba floating school.

Manobo fisherman Rosbiano Navarro, 35, told this writer that the giant crocodile who attacked him last January 29, 2009 near his floating home in another area in Lake Mihaba was smaller one, he estimated around 26 to 28 meters long and a meter wide.

Navarro said he was rowing his boat going home after fishing around 6 p.m. of January 29, 2009 when the giant crocodile attacked him from behind.

Fortunately, he claimed he already noticed the presence of the giant crocodile behind him because of the waves the giant crocodile was creating as reptile was following him but he kept his composure and didn’t panicked.
Fortunately, he claimed he already noticed the presence of the giant crocodile behind him because of the waves the giant crocodile was creating as reptile was following him but he kept his composure and didn’t panicked.

“Luckily, I was able to jump and held myself in a twig of a tree in a swampy area near my home but still the water crocodile bit portion of my legs and stomach” Navarro said as he show scars of the wounds. The recent sighting was the one made by the relatives and parents of the giant croc attack victim Rowena Romano, couple Rex, 45, and Divina Romano, 40.

The couple claimed that at about 9 a.m. yesterday March 13, when they were cruising Lake Mihaba aboard a motorized banca heading towards Barangay San Marcos, the venue of the evacuation, they got surprised of their lives when a giant crocodile about 28 meters long, more than one meters wide appear near them.

“ We personally saw the giant crocodile as it was only two meters away from us and we even look eye to eye with the monster luckily it never go near to us neither attack us as we speed away from the reptile”, the couple told this writer in an interview here yesterday afternoon. The surviving family of the first casualty victim of the giant crocodile attack were among floating community residents who evacuated from their floating houses due to fear of another giant crocodile attacks.

The whole area of Barangay San Marcos is part of the 113 ,000 hectares Agusan Marsh that when flooding occurs due rising of water level, the whole of Barangay San Marcos area is under water.

DENR Agusan del Sur Assistant Protected Area Superintendent Rufino Moreno Miranda who is in-charge on protected wild life endangered species at Agusan Marsh said the largest water crocodile in captivity in the World so far is 26 meters long and claimed water crocodiles are among the longest living reptiles on earth and can survived up to one hundred years or even more. He said at one time some U.P. Los Ba┼łos students he accompanied tried to get blood samples from water crocodiles at Agusan Marsh but the students never go near the crocodiles as Agusan Marsh crocodiles are the most elusive and difficult to catch.

“They usually appear in group at night and some sightings in late afternoon”, Miranda said. Miranda claimed the Agusan del Sur Provincial Protected Area Office have already received several offers like from the Crocodile Farm Institute in Palawan for technical assistance as well as physical help in the capture of the giant crocodile that attacked 12 year old girl last Saturday.

I think the author, whose first language is not English, is confusing metres with feet: 26-28-footers are likely to exist but 26-28 metres (getting on for 100 feet) are not. However, it does seem that the Agusan Marsh area is a hot spot for big crocs and a place that I would very much like to visit.


Yesterday we printed some pictures from Dan from his trip to China to gather information on the Yeren or Chinese wildman. He sent us a brief account of what happened..

Earlier this year I conducted a solo expedition into the remote Shennongjia National Park in central China.The goal was to collect more information about the cryptid known as the Chinese wild man or YEREN. Read On

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today


On this day in 1928 William Corder was executed for ‘the red barn murder.’ The victim’s body had been discovered after her stepmother had dreams about the murder.
And now, the news:

Mountain highway sign warns of Bigfoot
Bear in high-wire motorbike stunt and example of C...
Dachshund saves owner after seeking help
Sheep 'take over' Hobbit homes in NZ

Beware; this is a truly horrendous song: