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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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

CRYPTOLINK: Meet Issie, Japan’s very own Loch Ness Monster

A word about cryptolinks: we are not responsible for the content of cryptolinks, which are merely links to outside articles that we think are interesting (sometimes for the wrong reasons), usually posted up without any comment whatsoever from me. 

You may have thought that the Loch Ness Monster had cornered the market on fresh-water cryptids, but Japan has one of its own mythical lake beasts. There may be a monster lurking in the depths of Kyushu’s Lake Ikeda, a monster who goes by the terrifying name of… Issie-kun.

Lake Ikeda, at just 15 km around and with a maximum depth of 233 meters, is still the largest lake in Kyushu, which just goes to show that there are not that many lakes in Kyushu. It’s a caldera lake, meaning it doesn’t connect to the ocean and depends mostly on precipitation to maintain water levels.

The lake is supposedly also the home of a huge saurian creature called Issie, or Issie-kun, to give him the diminutive male suffix the city seems to prefer. Issie was first spotted by a family in 1978. Twenty witnesses reported seeing some black humps several meters in length moving through the water. Later that same year, a man named Toshiaki Matsuhara caught the creature on film.

▼ It’s Issie! …or some glare on the water. Or maybe some lake weeds? Whatever. Proof!

Since then, the tourism authorities have been promoting the Issie story to attract visitors to the region. There is even a mythology to explain Issie’s creation. In the story, a white mare lived on the shores of the lake with her foal. When the foal was captured by samurai, the white mare leapt into the lake in despair, transforming into a huge water creature. She surfaces now and then to look for her child. There is no explanation as to why Issie is a female in the story, but the monster is generally considered male. Another mystery!
Read on...

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