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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Saturday, November 06, 2010


One can tell that winter is just around the corner here at the CFZ because of the delivery of logs the other day. The log dude dumps them in the street, and Graham chucks them into the garden where they get neatly stashed in the log bin.

I did, however, like the upper picture because it appears to show Graham levitating a log like a 19th Century medium....

It is quite horrific to think that this enormous amount of wood won't last much more than a month....

UNCONVENTION 2010: Ian Ridpath - The Rendlesham Forest UFO Incident

Corinna tells Prudence's sad life-story


OLL LEWIS: More Indian Cryptids..

As we continue to wait for news from the away team in the Garo Hills, Oll continues his look at the cryptids of the region with a peek at the pygmy elephants of the Western Ghats.

ARCHIVING PROJECT: General Forteana Part 30

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`.

I messed up the link to this last weekend, so I am trying again.

This 30th collection once again really is a collection of completely uncategoriseable stuff, including a green cat in Denmark, a rare Savi's pipistrelle saved from a cat, a two headed calf and a python in a lavatory. It doesn't get much better than this. Good stuff.


OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today


On this day in 1872 the Mary Celeste set sail from New York only to be found completely abandoned by her crew adrift in the Atlantic on the 4th of December that year. There are many theories as to why the ship was abandoned, including insurance fraud, waterspouts, hallucinations and piracy. If you want to know more about the case Wikipedia is your friend:
And now, the news:

Pelican makes a pal in London park
Olympic sailors sign up peregrine falcon
New Culvert Bids An Cost Savings (for wood turtles...
Tiny Frog is Losing Ground (Western Chorus Frog)
Gucci, Hermès, Cartier & Co.: Stop the snake slaug...
Moving Animals Not a Panacea for Habitat Loss
Rare insect discovered in UK for first time
Lions Maul Man To Death In Safari Shower
Meet Big Foot's Chinese cousin
Safety vow after geese deaths
Ripley's Helps Dog Out of Hairy, Homeless Situatio...
Boar piglet learns to moo with new cow family

What is the most awesome thing you've ever seen? Well, after you click this link the answer to that question will always be “A baby monkey riding on a boar piglet”:
Baby monkey riding on a boar piglet

CFZ AUSTRALIA: Centre for Fortean Zoology Australia: CFZ given first look at 'Tasmanian Tiger' pelt

Several months ago we were contacted by American Bill Warren with an incredible story - he claimed to have a Tasmanian Tiger pelt in his possession.

We were somewhat dubious as he was, after all, in America - but it was certainly not beyond the bounds of possibility considering several American museums have some very good Thylacine specimens in their collections. Why not a pelt of a highly prized extinct animal in private hands?

Bill emailed us the image above and we began a dialogue about the skin's authenticity.

We advised him that he would need to seek out verification the pelt was in fact of a 'marsupial wolf' before it could be sold, and agreed to keep the matter confidential until such time as Mr Warren went public with his story.

This week his tale is featured in an edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune.

He picked up the pelt for $5 at a garage sale - $5 is cheap for any kind of animal pelt, particularly one that could be of an extinct animal. The last time anything like it went to auction was in 2002 when a rug made of pelts was sold for $270,000 (that's Australian dollars) by the Tasmanian Museum.

We advised Mr Warren about that auction's results and again suggested he get the pelt tested/analysed by experts before seeking to sell it, and discussed the legalities of trading such a rare skin across borders, given the likelihood of strong interest from Australian museums should the skin be genuine.

Professor John Long - formerly of Museum Victoria in Melbourne and now based at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles - also told Bill that while the skin may appear at first glance to the Thylacine, genetic tests would be needed to confirm the skin's identity.

In our discussions with Bill, we also suggested the possibility his skin could be that of the vulnerable Zebra Duiker, a small deer-like animal native to Côte d'Ivoire (Ivory Coast), Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. He was adamant it was not.

We'd love to believe it's a Thylacine, but the absence of tail skin, and the darkness and number of stripes leave the gate well and truly open to the possibility the skin is that of a Zebra Duiker.

At the recent CFZ Weird Weekend 2010, Dr Lars Thomas brought along a skin that had been bequested to a Danish Museum that he had been tasked to identify. At first glance, after Lars extracted it somewhat unceremoniously from a plastic bin bag, most mystery animal enthusiasts were adamant it was cryptozoology's Holy Grail - the Thylacine. But attendees were also aware of another possible identity for the skin, and over the course of the weekend it ultimately proved to be that of a Zebra Duiker. An important lesson learned!

Only hair and DNA can confirm the identity of Bill Warren's pelt. Thank you for sharing Bill, we await the results with interest!