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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, August 30, 2012

BIG CAT NEWS FROM AROUND THE WORLD

Whilst the focus of the CFZ Mystery Cat study group is predominantly the search for proof of the British big cats, it would be unrealistic to forget that this is only part of a global mystery-cat phenomenon.

Here are a selection of mystery cat related stories from around the world.

I distrust politicians as a matter of form, and when politicians start to get involved in a Fortean zoological subject I get deeply suspicious. But that is exactly what is happening in Australia.

Baillieu govt sinks claws into big cat mystery
The Age
Decades of shadowy sightings, grisly livestock kills and mysterious paw prints are being scrutinised as scientists sink their claws into verifying the existence of Victorian big cats. But rather than scouring bushland for the fearsome beasts armed with ...

This big cat was photographed near Lara, 15km northeast of Geelong in Victoria ...
NEWS.com.au
Just weeks after it shelved plans to solve the decades-long mystery, the Victorian Government now wants to put the matter to rest once and for all. Witness sightings have been recorded, over at least 60 years, of cougars, panthers or pumas in a wide ...

Website 'erosion' worries insiders
Sydney Morning Herald
THE Victorian government may be happy to use taxpayers' money to search for a mythical big cat, but apparently it wants to limit information to the public on endangered animals and plants. The Department of Sustainability and Environment is set to ...

Big cat stories to be investigated by DSE
ABC Online
Victorian Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh has confirmed the Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE) will investigate stories of big cats roaming the Victorian bush. At the last election, Deputy Premier Peter Ryan promised to investigate ...

Big cat myth should stay a mystery
Herald Sun
They have climbed back up the ladder of government priorities after a mid-season rejection. That is, the Victorian Government has launched an investigation into whether the mythical big cats exist. It's an issue that arouses much excitement in country ...

Southern Otway Landcare eNews August 28 2012 Southern Otway ...
By SOLN
Big Cats appear will be rearing their heads again following a Government commitment to spend money on a big cat research project. Sightings of big cats have been reported across Victoria over many decades, with the Geelong Otway region ...

Victoria's big cat rumours to be investigated
ABC Online
The Bailleau government this week announced that it would honour its election promise and begin an investigation into whether or not big cats, similar to panthers or pumas, exist in Victoria. Speaking on ABC Goulburn Murray mornings, agriculture ...

No cash in catching big cats
Weekly Times Now
The Victorian Government has been taken aback by the huge public interest in its big cat hunt since it was first reported in The Weekly Times last week. Thousands of people have taken part in media polls and many hundreds more have offered reports of ...

Vic govt sinks claws into big cat mystery
The Daily Telegraph
DECADES of shadowy sightings, grisly livestock kills and mysterious paw prints are being scrutinised as scientists sink their claws into verifying the existence of Victorian big cats. But rather than scouring bushland for the fearsome beasts armed with ...

Hunt on for hills cats
Ranges Trader Mail
THE mystery surrounding the Dandenongs' big cat sightings could soon be solved, with the State Government last week revealing an investigation was under way. Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh confirmed the study had started last month, honouring a ...

Premier says wild dog controls still a priority
ABC Online
The Victorian Government says investigations into the existence of big cats will not undermine efforts to combat wild dogs across the state. The Government has set up what it calls a "desk top" investigation to examine reports dating back to World War ...

Big cats hunters vindicated
Weekly Times Now
Pictures: Mark Griffin. BIG cat believers are no longer considered 'nutters' but people worth listening to, writes CHRIS McLENNAN. Simon Townsend has been vindicated. His obsession with mysterious big cats is no longer considered as weird as it once was.

This mystery large black cat was photographed near Casterton forest several ...
Herald Sun
This mystery large black cat was photographed near Casterton forest several years ago. Picture: Bob McPherson Source: News Limited. A WILDLIFE keeper has become the latest person to claim a panther sighting in Victoria. The Wild Action zoo keeper said ...

Big cat mystery deepens as zoo keeper claims a new panther sighting in Mt ...
NEWS.com.au
Big cat mystery deepens as zoo keeper claims a new panther sighting in Mt Macedon. by: Angus Thompson; From: Herald Sun; August 30, 2012 3:29PM. Increase Text Size · Decrease Text Size · Print · Email · Share · Add to Digg · Add to del.icio.us · Add to ...

Big cats out of the bag
The Age
DECADES of shadowy sightings, grisly livestock kills and mysterious paw prints are being scrutinised as scientists sink their claws into verifying the existence of Victorian big cats. But rather than scouring bushland for the beasts, they'll be working ...

Baillieu Government has defended its decision to pour time and money into ...
Herald Sun
Agriculture Minister Peter Walsh yesterday said government staff previously working on wild dog programs would be re-diverted to study potential sightings of cougars, pumas and panthers in regional and rural Victoria at a time public sector jobs were ...

Mystery deepens over big cats in Victoria as locals at Wombat State Forest ...
NEWS.com.au
The smells are intensely fresh, our senses sharp. There is a start as someone steps in a pile of still-steaming fresh droppings and says: "Cat scat." We are waiting for the death that stalks the darkness, for one of the big cats prowling silently on ...
Vic sinks claws into big cat mystery
Sky News Australia
Vic sinks claws into big cat mystery. Updated: 13:39, Wednesday August 22, 2012. Decades of unconfirmed sightings, grisly livestock killings and mysterious pawprints are being examined by Victorian scientists. But rather than scouring bushland for the ...

In the entire of Victoria, is there a puma, a cougar or a panther?
3AW (blog)
John Burns said the only person he had ever heard to have spotted an alleged 'big cat' was a real estate agent who had told of the sighting in Christmas Hills to his friend, known as 'Gavin Gnome'. ”Peter Ryan is clearly wasting government money ...

Government-sponsored big cat study to go forward in Victoria ...
By idoubtit
Hunt for big cats, including cougars, panthers or pumas, in Victoria begins after decades of reported sightings Just weeks after it shelved plans to solve the.

Vic govt spurred into Black Cat action
Crikey
Some heartening news for Victorians concerned that Ted Baillieu had junked his commitment to his notorious “big cat” search. The front page of yesterday's Weekly Times confirms that the premier has resuscitated his pledge, floated at the last two ...

Mystery deepens over big cats in Victoria as locals at Wombat State Forest ...
Herald Sun
The smells are intensely fresh, our senses sharp. There is a start as someone steps in a pile of still-steaming fresh droppings and says: "Cat scat." We are waiting for the death that stalks the darkness, for one of the big cats prowling silently on ...

Australian state gov't to review big cat sightings - snopes.com
Decades of shadowy sightings, grisly livestock kills and mysterious paw prints are being scrutinised as scientists sink their claws into verifying the existence of ...

And now to America where pumas seem to be expanding their range at a rate of knots. Forgive my political scepticism, but I find it peculiar that all this has happened a year after the American Government declared the Eastern Puma to be extinct. It is interesting to see that the American newspaper reports are almost equally divided between demonising these creatures and calling for their protection

Horse Attacked By Big Cat Near Aitkin
Northland's NewsCenter
Aitkin, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- A horse owner in rural Aitkin is warning other livestock owners of a large wild cat that may be on the loose in the area. According to the Brainerd Dispatch, Lori Hart's 900 pound horse Molly was mauled by a big cat.

Aitkin County horse owner warns others of big cat attack
The Republic
A horse owner whose 900-pound mare was attacked by a mountain lion or cougar wants other animal owners in Aitkin County to be on the lookout for the big cats. Lori Hart's quarter horse Molly was mauled last week on her property north of Aitkin. Hart ...

Large, wild cat attacks horse in Aitkin Co. - BringMeTheNews.com
Last week 900-pound quarter horse, Molly, belonging to Lori Hart of rural Aitkin County was mauled by a cat that a veterinarian confirmed was either a mountain lion or a cougar. Molly is recovering although the attack left the horse with a nasty ...

Quarter horse mare attacked by large wild cat - Brainerd Dispatch MN
YouTube
Last week her 900-pound quarter horse mare, Molly, was mauled by a cat that a Pierz veterinarian confirmed was either a mountain lion or a cougar. The cat, Hart said, took "a big old chunk out of her hindquarters." She said the veterinarian's office ...

Big Cat Attacks Horse In Aitkin « CBS Minnesota
A woman whose horse was attacked by a big cat wants to warn other animal owners in Minnesota. The attack happened north of the town of Aitkin last week ...

Horse Attacked By Big Cat Near Aitkin | Northland's NewsCenter ...
Aitkin, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) --- A horse owner near Aitkin, MN is warning other livestock owners of a big cat that may be lurking around the area.

Moving away from Aitkin, MN and Molly the Mare to other North American big cat news

Big Kitty in a Big City
MyHighPlains
Police and animal control officers swarmed the Harrah's Casino in Reno, Nevada Friday after a wayward mountain lion was spotted near the building. Officers were able to subdue the lion with a tranquilizer dart. They later returned the big cat to the wild.

Rangers Shoot 1 Cougar In Boulder, Chase Off Another
KMGH Denver
Churchill said rangers still hope to later catch that mountain lion and place a tracking device on the big cat. The second mountain lion was spotted later that night, near Mapleton Avenue and 26th Street, about five blocks from where the first cougar ...

BC woman recounts 'surreal' cougar attack in her house
CBC.ca
Prime had only seconds to throw up her arms and legs to shield her face before the big cat attacked. "I moved to try and block myself, and it kind of jumped up and I screamed." Despite the animal's poor condition, it was still far from an even match ...

BC woman credits dog with saving her from cougar attack
Examiner.com
According to Tuesday's publication of the Toronto Sun, the hungry cat's plans were waylaid by a dog named "Vicious." Vicious, a border collie, preempted the big cat's imminent attack by chasing it out of the house, and up a hill. Angie Prime, Vicious ...

Lynden, Wash., 'cougar' sightings turn out to be big house cat
The Republic
LYNDEN, Wash. — Police in Lynden, Wash., say the multiple reports they received of a "cougar" sighting near the fairgrounds turned out to be a very muscular orange-colored domestic cat. Police Chief Jack Foster tells the Bellingham Herald ...

No more sightings of big cats
The Chronicle Journal
It's been almost a week since the last report of a big cat, possibly a cougar, prowling the city of Thunder Bay. There have been no sightings since last Tuesday of the animal which had been reported wandering the wooded areas near Lakehead University ...

Police: Cougar sightings in Lynden were false alarm
Bellingham Herald
That time an officer was able to get within a few feet of the animal at 3 p.m. and discovered it was, in fact, a big cat - a big domestic cat. From a distance, Foster acknowledged, the large feline did look like a cougar because of "the way the fur is ...

Cougar attacks alarm Vancouver Island farmers
CBC.ca
Big cat fearless. But farm owner Nigel Bass said he has seen a big cat on his property, and is concerned about its apparent fearlessness. “This was much bigger than I thought it would be and not terribly afraid of me,” Bass said. “It's a little bit of ...

The Moutain Lions And The Mobile Home Park
PetsLady.com
One of the cats escaped the Colorado Parks and Wildlife rangers hunting the pair and is still on the loose. Mountain Lion (Photo by Malcolm/Creative Commons via Wikimedia). One of the big cats was spotted at around 8 p.m. in the area of a back yard hot ...

Whatever one might think of the reaction of the American authorities to the burgeoning numbers of pumas across the country, their policy towards the much rarer US jaguars seems praiseworthy.

Jaguars will have an area of critical habitat established for them in SW ...
The Wildlife News
This is a big thing for the big cat that is a rare inhabitant of the SW U.S. The trouble is jaguars may not even inhabit the United States on a continuing basis. There is no doubt that they do from time to time. Photos from “trail cameras,” and the ...

Fish and Wildlife Service eyes more than 800,000 acres for jaguar ...
By Natasha Khan
Cronkite News. Big cat habitat. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife has identified 838,233 acres in Arizona and New Mexico as potential habitat for the endangered jaguar. The areas are: - About 138,975 acres in the Baboquivari Mountains, Arizona ...

And in Israel, sand cats have bred in a local zoo

4 Rare (and Adorable) Sand Cat Kittens Born in Israeli Zoo (Video)
Care2.com (blog)
Native to deserts in northern Africa and southwest and central Asia, the sand cat has evolved to survive in such a harsh climte and, says the site ZooBorns, can thrive in far drier environments than any other feline. Like the Fennec Fox, Sand Cats have ...

Rare Sand Cat Kittens Born In Israel
Global Animal
Rotem was paired with Sela, a male cat from Poland, as part of a European breeding program for sand cats, a species listed as “near threatened” by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Sand cats typically give birth to an average of three ...
See all stories on this topic »

In India, the authorities are far more pragmatic about their big cats

A tiger killed a tribal woman trapped by forest ... - Big Cat Rescue
By BCR
MYSORE: A day after a tiger, which supposedly killed a tribal woman, was trapped by forest department officials using an elephant in Heggadadevana Kote on Sunday. The big cat has been shifted to Mysore zoo to treat injury on a front limb.

Leopard rescued after becoming impaled on metal railings
By arbroath
The female big cat, aged around 4 years, seems to have got struck while jumping over a 7-ft compound of the BEML factory, some 12 kms away from Mysore city in Tamil Nadu. The incident came to light after security personnel alerted forest ...

Man-eating tiger rescued in Mysore
Times of India
The big cat has been shifted to Mysore zoo to treat injury on a front limb. However, its condition is stable. The cat is suffering from an injury on its left front leg and it also has two healed wounds marks on its back. Authorities will later take a ...

Tiger cub dies during zoo exam at Assiniboine ... - Big Cat Rescue
By BCR
A baby tiger at Assiniboine Park Zoo has died. Reka, an Amur tiger, had just celebrated his first birthday July 29. He and his sister Sarma were born in the zoo to parents Baikal and Kendra. The animals are also known as Siberian tigers.

Ailing white tiger at Bokaro park dies
Daily Pioneer
A white big cat who was stuck by paralysis died at Jawaharlal Nehru Biological Park (JNB) in Bokaro Steel City on Saturday, officials informed. Thousand of animal lovers socked with the death as it's the second death of big cat at Bokaro Zoo this year ...

Bhimbar: Villagers shoot a leopard dead
The News International
Azad Jammu & Kashmir is home to two of the world's big cats, the common leopard (Panthera pardus) and the snow leopard (Uncia uncia), a cat so secretive few have been privileged enough to get a glimpse of it in the wild. Reportedly, the killing to an ...

Illegal lion shows go on for Gir tourists
Economic Times
Tour operators in Gir offer live cattle as bait to lions in order to to show tourists how the big cats hunt, which is illegal. RAJKOT: Wildlife activists have demanded a ban on illegal lion shows in Amreli district on the outskirts of Gujarat's Gir ...

And finally a bit of feline teratology..

Rare two-faced cat lives 12 years, sets record
First Coast News
"It's funny because people walk up to him thinking it's a nice, fluffy white cat and they're walking up with a big smile on their face to pat him, like, 'Oh, what a beautiful cat' and I see a look of horror come over their faces when they actually see ...

Two-faced cat pics: Venus the chimera cat is not a Photoshop creation
Zap2it.com (blog)
Venus even posts on her own Facebook page, where she calls her owners "Mommy" and "Daddy," which might be a little annoying if she weren't just 3 years old -- and a cat. Her owner writes in ... She acts like a big baby in the way that she loves to be ...

Meet Venus the famous two-faced cat who's winning fans world-wide
Daily Mail
Venus' proud owner describes her lovingly as a 'gentle' and 'perfect' pet with a deceptively big appetite. 'As tiny as she is she likes to pick the giant pieces of food from the dog food bowl rather than eat her cat food,' the owner writes on Venus ...

Master of disguise! Check out amazing pics and video of the cat with TWO FACES
Mirror.co.uk
The chimera tabby has 22,000 Facebook fans after her proud owner created a page on the social networking site dedicated to her "gentle" and "perfect" pet with a deceptively big appetite. And a home video of this very special master of disguise has ...

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