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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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Monday, March 30, 2015

MUIRHEAD`S MYSTERIES: SOME ZOOLOGICAL EXHIBITS IN OXFORDSHIRE MUSEUMS

A few days ago I bought a fascinating book at an Oxfam shop in Manchester called : `Treasures of Oxfordshire` by Francesca Jones,Dr Lauren Gilmour and Dr Martin Henig (FAMOS,Friends Of Archives,Museums and Oxfordshire Studies, Oxford 2004 ISBN 0-906871-31-X) which contains illustrations and notes on numerous museum exhibits throughout Oxfordshire. This part of England is of significance to me as I was a student at Oxford Brookes University between 1996 and 1999.

So going through the whole book from front to back cover,in page order,these are the items of zoological significance which include photos:

Toy Snake .Made by stringing stamps,mainly penny reds,together. 19th Century,Museums Resource Centre, Standlake. (1)

Megalosaurus Bucklandi. First described by William Buckland. Photo of part of jaw bone. The first bone from which the term `dinosaur` arose. (2)

 Photo of Oxford Sandy and Black pig. “Typical of the rare breeds kept at Cogges Manor Farm Museum in Witney. Said to have been in existence for centuries, Oxford Sandy and Blacks are medium sized pigs  with sandy hair and black blotches.They are believed to have originated from Hook Norton in Oxfordshire. (3)

Kidlington lion`s head,Kidlington station,one of a number of cast iron heads used to decorate roof awnings in Great Western Railway stations in Cherwell Valley. The one in the photo dates from opening of the Oxford to Birmingham railway in 1852.(4)

Oxford Dodo`s Head Mummified head and foot are all that are left .”The `Oxford Dodo` was brought to London c. 1636 and was acquired by John Tradescant,gardener to Charles 1.Tradescant`s collection was willed to Elias Ashmole and so came to Oxford.”(5)

Back cover.This isn`t actualy the same photo as on the back cover of this book,but it`s the same skeleton at the same place, Oxford University Museum of Natural History though. There`s an interesting story behind it. I quote from the back cover text:

“ Tunny Fish.The tunny fish was collected by Dr Acland (Dr Lee`s Reader in Anatomy,Christ Church) in 1847 in Madeira through the offices of the consul. The fish had been packed in salt and placed in an 8ft long box for the voyage back. During this return voyage,the crew and passengers of the steam ship Tyne became convinced that the box contained the corpse of a patient. In their minds, this accounted for the violent storms encountered in the Bay of Biscay (shades of Jonah here-R) and after a mutiny the Captain gave notice that he intended to throw the ill omen overboard. Acland threatened legal proceedings and the tunny fish was kept on board after the box was opened and its contents displayed. When the steamer was wrecked in Cornwall, the crew worked double time to rescue the fish, doubtless feeling remorse for their unfounded suspicion.” (6)

The Jourdain Society `A` Egg Collection. Totals 5000 eggs from birds in the Palaeorctic region,stored in a place called Hills Units donated 2000-2001. Memorabilia and diaries also donated as well as information on breeding sites for birds of prey in Scandanavia and the colour intensity of blue tit eggs.()

REFERENCES


  1. Treasures of Oxfordshire p.4
  2. Ibid p.6
  3. Ibid p. 19
  4. Ibid p. 63
  5. Ibid p. 68
  6. Ibid Back Cover.

BIGFOOT NEWS IN BRIEF



Faith No More Star Premiering Big Foot Themed Opera (A Top Story)
On Tuesday Faith No More Star Premiering Big Foot Themed Opera was a top story. Here is the recap: (Classic Rock) Faith No More's Roddy Bottum ...

Why Jane Goodall Believes in Bigfoot (Video)
Jane Goodall is so nice and so good, it's intimidating. She seems an almost mythic figure. She made groundbreaking discoveries about the behavior

Daily Journal
Ohio's 'Minerva Monster' that lured Bigfoot hunters in the 1970s subject of documentary
AKRON, Ohio — The creature that lured Bigfoot hunters and curiosity seekers to southern Stark County is now the subject of a documentary.

Bigfoot spotted in Richmond, Maine
Bigfoot spotted in Richmond, Maine. A local from Richmond, Maine witnesses a Sasquatch.. Listen to his chilling story. Huge thanks to Alan Dillingham ...

FORTEAN BIRD NEWS FROM THE WATCHER OF THE SKIES

What has Corinna's column of Fortean bird news got to do with cryptozoology?

Well, everything, actually!

In an article for the first edition of Cryptozoology Bernard Heuvelmans wrote that cryptozoology is the study of 'unexpected animals' and following on from that perfectly reasonable assertion, it seems to us that whereas the study of out-of-place birds may not have the glamour of the hunt for bigfoot or lake monsters, it is still a perfectly valid area for the Fortean zoologist to be interested in.


THE GONZO BLOG DOO-DAH MAN APPEARS TO BE NEARLY THERE

The Gonzo Daily - Monday
I really don't believe that it is Monday once again. Where does the time go? The year is a quarter gone already, and I have had a cold for a third of that and been hors de combat, which means I have not achieved anything like the amount of stuff I would have wanted to achieve. But there really is no point in bellyaching about it. What cannot be cured must be endured blah blah blah.
There have now been at least five records of yellow legged tortoiseshells this year, and they appear to involve at least three separate individuals. Why all the fuss? Well, until last year there had only ever been one sighting of this rare European butterfly in the UK, and that was back in 1953. Last year there was a whole slew of sightings, and these spring sightings strongly suggest that some survived the winter (which was actually too mild for their tastes). Could this year see them breeding for the first time?
There has also been an extraordinary sighting of two specimens of the Wall Brown (Lasiommata megera) in Cornwall. It is not a particularly rare butterfly, but they are not usually seen for another two months! I sincerely hope some of you guys reading this find this stuff as exciting as I do...
The Gonzo Weekly #123
www.gonzoweekly.com
Cream, Kansas, Jack Bruce, Eric Clapton, Ginger Baker, Viv Albertine, The Slits, Daevid Allen, Hawkwind, Jon Anderson, and Yes fans had better look out!
The latest issue of Gonzo Weekly (#123) is another bumper one at 92 pages and is available to read at www.gonzoweekly.com, and to download at http://www.gonzoweekly.com/pdf/. It has Cream  on the cover, and inside yours truly pontificates on the band's legacy while Tony Palmer remembers filming their farewell show back in 1968. Doug writes about proggers Kansas, and Jon critiques the new autobiography by Viv Albertine ofThe Slits. We look at just a few of the many tributes to Daevid Allen, and send the Gonzo Customer Service guy to a Desert Island. Neil Nixon reports on an even stranger album than usual, Wyrd goes avant garde, Xtul gets even more peculiar,  and there are radio shows from Strange Fruit and from M Destiny at Friday Night Progressive, and the titular submarine dwellers are still lost at sea, although I have been assured that they will hit land again soon. There is also a collection of more news, reviews, views, interviews and pademelons trying to choose (OK, nothing to do with small marsupials having difficulty in making choices, but I got carried away with things that rhymed with OOOOS) than you can shake a stick at. And the best part is IT's ABSOLUTELY FREE!!!
This issue features:
Cream, Ringo Starr, SXSW, Beastie Boys, Sonic Youth, Blur, Daevid Allen, James Murphy, Galahad, Strange Fruit, Friday Night Progressive, John Renbourn, Anthony Pero, Michael Porcaro, Bruce Crump, Jackie Trent, Tommy James, Mick Abrahams, Firemerchants, Dee Palmer, Atkins May Project, Wagner, Hawkwind, Karnataka, Paul Buff, Frank Zappa, Charli XCX, Garth Brooks,5 Seconds of Summer, Ed Sheeran, Tony Palmer, Kansas, Steve Lavelle, HaWkwind, Yes, Viv Albertine, Xtul, Fairport Convention, Belle and Sebastian,Neil Nixon, Alberto y Lost Trios Paranoias, Beatles,Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, 1D, Elvis, Micky Dolenz, Tom Jones,  Golden Resurrection, Indicco, Myrath

Read the previous few issues of Gonzo Weekly:
All issues from #70 can be downloaded at www.gonzoweekly.com if you prefer. If you have problems downloading, just email me and I will add you to the Gonzo Weekly dropbox. The first 69 issues are archived there as well. Information is power chaps, we have to share it!
You can download the magazine in pdf form HERE:
http://www.gonzoweekly.com/pdf/

* The Gonzo Daily is a two way process. If you have any news or want to write for us, please contact me at jon@eclipse.co.uk. If you are an artist and want to showcase your work, or even just say hello please write to me at gonzo@cfz.org.uk. Please copy, paste and spread the word about this magazine as widely as possible. We need people to read us in order to grow, and as soon as it is viable we shall be invading more traditional magaziney areas. Join in the fun, spread the word, and maybe if we all chant loud enough we CAN stop it raining. See you tomorrow...
* The Gonzo Daily is - as the name implies - a daily online magazine (mostly) about artists connected to the Gonzo Multimedia group of companies. But it also has other stuff as and when the editor feels like it. The same team also do a weekly newsletter called - imaginatively - The Gonzo Weekly. Find out about it at this link: www.gonzo-multimedia.blogspot.com/…/all-gonzo-news-wots-fit
* We should probably mention here, that some of our posts are links to things we have found on the internet that we think are of interest. We are not responsible for spelling or factual errors in other people's websites. Honest guv!

* Jon Downes, the Editor of all these ventures (and several others) is an old hippy of 55 who - together with an infantile orange cat named after a song by Frank Zappa puts it all together from a converted potato shed in a tumbledown cottage deep in rural Devon which he shares with various fish, and sometimes a small Indian frog. He is ably assisted by his lovely wife Corinna, his bulldog/boxer Prudence, his elderly mother-in-law, and a motley collection of social malcontents. Plus.. did we mention the infantile orange cat?

TODAY'S BIG CAT NEWS

The hunt for British Big Cats attracts far more newspaper-column inches than any other cryptozoological subject. 

There are so many of them now that we feel that they should be archived by us in some way, so we are publishing a regular round-up of the stories as they come in. 

The worldwide mystery cat phenomenon (or group of phenomena, if we are to be more accurate) is not JUST about cryptozoology. At its most basic level it is about the relationship between our species and various species of larger cat. That is why sometimes you will read stories here that appear to have nothing to do with cryptozoology but have everything to do with human/big cat interaction. As committed Forteans, we believe that until we understand the nature of these interactions, we have no hope of understanding the truth that we are seeking.


  • NEWSLINK-UK -LYNX POSSIBLE SIGHTING-Big cat expert...
  • video-BIG CAT SEEN AT BESTIVAL SITE
  • video-Meet Canyon the SAND CAT!
  • video-Are Domestic Cats Like Tigers?
  • video-BIG CATS like boxes too!


  • video-Big Cat seen on Campus-


  • NEWS FROM NOWHERE - Monday

    ON THIS DAY IN 1533 - Henry VIII divorced his first wife, Catherine of Aragon. 
    And now some more recent news from the CFZ Newsdesk


  • Namadgi's endangered northern corroboree frogs are...
  • Texas man who won hunting auction to be allowed to...
  • 12ft Florida alligator becomes a golf course celeb...
  • Why Jane Goodall Believes in Bigfoot (Video)
  • Malawi to burn its £5m ivory stockpile this week -...


  • Scientists try to help humble turtles stay afloat ...


  • AND TO WHISTLE WHILE YOU WORK... (Music that may have some relevance to items also on this page, or may just reflect my mood on the day)