WELCOME TO THE CFZ BLOG NETWORK: COME AND JOIN THE FUN

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, April 04, 2012

MUIRHEAD`S MYSTERIES: A GIANT SEA SNAKE AND SOME OTHER MARINE ODDITIES

Whilst on the way to visit Jon on Tuesday March 27th I visited the Meteorological Office Library in Exeter, U.K after a tough and annoying trail through some back streets and bus stations. But the ordeal was worthwhile. I found the following story from The Marine Observer vol 12 1935 and I also found a log book of Natural History anomalies which I am going to quote from below.

However, first, the “ GIANT WATER SNAKE”.

The following is an extract from the Meteorological Record of S.S Port Bowen, Captain A.H. Brown, Fremantle to Perim, observer Mr R. Bittess 3rd officer.

On March 2nd , 1934, about 12.40pm while on passage from Fremantle to Perim a large water snake was seen from the bridge of this vessel. When first sighted it was about 300 yards away, one point aft side the beam on the starboard side. It was travelling along slowly in a direction approximately south-west or at right angles to the course, vessel steering 318 degrees. The head was held about two feet clear of the water while the rest of the body was lying either along or close underneath the surface of the sea. After a few seconds the head dropped and the whole of the snake was then seen lying along the top of the sea. The body was of a dirty yellowish colour with black markings along the back which were not easily discernable even with the aid of binoculars. The forward motion of the snake through the water was evidently supplied by a continuous wriggling movement from the head to the tail, as no fins of any shape or form were visible. Its speed was estimated to be about 2 knots, as the time taken from when it was first sighted to the position where it disappeared just clear of the vessels wake, was approximately four minutes. The length of the creature was estimated by observers to be about fifty feet, with a diameter of about two feet. The middle of the body was apparently of greater girth than the head or tail. After apparently diving on approaching the vessel`s wake nothing further was seen of it, although a good lookout was kept in case it appeared again. Weather fine and clear with passing clouds. Visibility excellent. Slight sea and S.S.E. swell. Nearest land Danger Island . Chagos Arch., 088 degrees , distant 170 miles. Position of vessel, Latitude 6 degrees 35` S ., Longitude 68 degrees 18` E.[Arabian Sea-R]

I also found 2 or 3 handwritten log books of anomalous natural history phenomenon observed by mariners over about 100 years, some of the observations are reproduced below:

August 23rd 1938: Fish, 50-100 ft long.
c.November 23rd 1990 Log 49105 Ship Liverpool Bay c 37 24 N 10 36 E [just off the coast of N.Tunisia-R] “Mermaid”.
February 9th 1994 Log 9430: Sea Serpent
March 21st 1998 Log 10182: Fish “like a ray. Never saw fish like it.”
August 16th 1998: Sea Serpent

Richard

FOR SALE: It Happened To Me (Fortean Times) vols 1-4 £25 Apply to flyingsnakepress@hotmail.co.uk

CHAD ARMENT SENT THIS INTERESTING PAPER

Here's a PDF of a recent paper (maybe an early web version? "Evidence Confirms the Presence of Cougars (Puma concolor) in Ontario, Canada," from the Canadian Field-Naturalist. Of particular interest, the photo of a "melanistic jaguar" from a 2010 game trail camera.

http://www.ofnc.ca/cfn/125/116-125_03_11007_rosatte_WEB.pdf

JUST IN CASE YOU WERE WONDERING WHAT IS HAPPENING OVER ON THE GONZO BLOG

MARTIN STEPHENSON IN THE JARROW GAZETTE: Local boy...
MEMORIES OF JON ANDERSON IN NEWCASTLE 1980
MICHAEL DES BARRES - An exclusive sneak look at th...
MICHAEL DES BARRES UPDATE
SPARKS - Talent is an asset
Owain Roberts (Reposted from the IONA Newsletter)
MERRELL FANKHAUSER: Psychedelic Dreams
Rick Wakeman Tops Crystal Palace Concert
THE BEST OF MERRELL FANKHAUSER
HAWKWIND: How weird is that?
JUDGE SMITH: They love him in Israel

A BAND CALLED PHIDEAUX AND THEIR GOATSUCKING MUSIC

http://www.progarchives.com/Review.asp?id=681306

HAUNTED SKIES: Times (The) 11.4.66.


http://hauntedskies.blogspot.com/2012/04/times-11466.html

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today

http://cryptozoologynews.blogspot.com/

On this day in 1722 the Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen became the first European to set foot on Easter Island.

And now the news:

Pelicans return to Minnesota after near extinction...
Sparrows Change Their Tune to Be Heard in Noisy Ci...
Antarctic warming changing penguin breeding cycles...
Possible Narwhal stranding in Liscannor Bay, Co. C...
Ainsdale residents urged to report sick red squirr...
Grey-crowned Crocias crops-up in new location
Animal pests are destroying New Zealand’s biodiver...
Grey Seals in Baltic Sea Consume as Much Fish as t...
Weed killers threaten Lange's metalmark butterfly
Linda McCartney memorial wood is destroyed by dise...

A very nice looking HD film of the island:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhgJo0O0o9I

CFZ PEOPLE: Mary Downes (1922-2002)

Today is what would have been my mother's 90th birthday. If there is a life after death then 'Happy Birthday Mum', if not, I and many other people still remember her with love and affection.

Join the RSPB for Easter fun and frolics in and around Exeter

It’s all go for the RSPB in and around Exeter over the Easter Weekend.

On Friday 6 April the wildlife charity is holding a family nature trail with a difference at Darts Farm near Topsham on Friday The trail is based on the well-known nursery rhyme ‘who killed cock robin’ and will encourage participants to think about the different wildlife that can be found around the farm and how it interacts with each other.

Gemma Dunn, RSPB visitor officer says, “We have all heard of the classic nursery rhyme about poor old cock robin. This is a great chance to test your detective skills to see if you can solve our nature murder mystery. Darts Farm is a great place for spotting wildlife with many mammal and bird species present so participants should have a good chance of spotting potential culprits.”

“We will be setting up our ‘love nature’ marquee by the animal corner on the farm, and there will be children’s activities and face painting too. I am really looking forward to welcoming families to this event- it should be a lot of fun!”

Darts Farm is located on Bridge hill, on the outskirts of Topsham. Entrance to the trail is free and the public are invited to drop in anytime between 10.30am and 2.30pm. For further information call Gemma on 01392 824614. And if visitors call into the RSPB shop at Darts Farm they will find an array of offers on bird food and RSPB beauty products.Then on Easter Monday the RSPB is hoping to raise hundreds of pounds to help local children discover more about the wildlife of Exe Estuary by holding a bucket collection at Exeter City Football Club. RSPB staff and volunteers will be collecting before the match against Leyton Orient.

Fran Luke, Community Fundraising Officer for the RSPB said: “This is only the second time we’ve raised money at a football match, and we’re really looking forward to it. The money we raise will go towards our Exe Estuary RSPB Wildlife Explorer Club. This has been set up to help children learn more about the birds and creatures that live in this very special place.

We’re also hoping to raise funds to help develop our nature reserves on the Exe.”

Every year the RSPB raises many thousands of pounds through fundraising in the region and this goes to support a wide range of projects, from looking after our nature reserves to running educational schemes to help children experience the natural world. Fran Luke said: “Alongside the support of our members, the money we raise through collections and the sale of our popular wildlife pin badges is of huge importance to the work we do in the region.”

Fran Luke: “We’re always interested in hearing from other venues that might host collection for us. If there is a wildlife link, even better!"

DALE DRINNON: Skunk apes, Tyler Stone, Benny's Blog


New on the Frontiers of Zoology:
an unexpected link between Skunk Apes and the more apelike kind of Orang Pendek:
http://frontiersofzoology.blogspot.com/2012/04/skunk-apes-and-napes.html

New on Tyler Stone's blog,
his speculations building on my classification of Monster sightings seen ashore at Loch Ness:
http://titanoceratops.blogspot.com/2012/04/nessie-has-weight-problem-land.html

And New on Benny's Blog, More Film Fun From Jolly Olde:
http://benny-drinnon.blogspot.com/2012/04/film-fun.html