Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

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Monday, August 10, 2009



Apologies for bothering you with an unsolicited e-mail, but I'm familiar with your work from Fortean Times and the Unconvention so thought you might be able to help me identify the object in the attached photo. It appears to be an animal dropping of some kind, though a very large and unusual one (it has a glossy texture, with strange band-like markings). It might be something other than a turd, but I can't think what!

The shoe in the picture is UK size 8 ½ -- about 28.5 cm from heel to toe, making the mystery object at least 20 cm long. The photograph was taken (with a camera phone) on Thursday, 6th August in part of the Winfrith Heath Site of Special Scientific Interest in Dorset. The area is teeming with wildlife, including rabbits, foxes, stoats and/or weasels (I can't tell them apart), snakes (adders, grass snakes and slow worms), lizards, toads and newts. This is the first thing I've seen that I haven't got a clue what it is!

Let me know if you have any ideas what it might be, or feel free to post the photo on your blog if you think anyone else might be able to help. I have another photo (a closer shot without scale reference) if it would help.

Andrew May


fleury said...

we saw something similar yesterday at the devon wildlife trust's little bradley ponds. hmm. no idea what it is i'm afraid.

Anonymous said...

Is it a regurgitated pellet of some kind? I have no idea what might have expelled it though.

Oll Lewis said...

Some animals can leave droppings a lot larger than you might think the animal would be capable of and in shapes different to how you might expect them to look.

The picture in question could well be just a dropping made by a large dog. Usually when a dog does it's business it stands still and the dropping forms a pile often made of smaller little bits that have been nipped off, however sometimes a dog can be moving along as they lay their dogs eggs and if the dog has been eating foods of the right consistency the dog can lay a cable similar to the one photographed.

Anyway, a well fed dog and an owner that doesn't pick up after their animal has gone to the toilet would be my guess.

Tony Lucas - Citizen Scientist said...

it almost looks like some things windpipe, perhaps the remains of somethings meal.

Andrew May said...

Re the dog theory -- I tried to put all the relevant info in the original message, but I was bound to forget something! The picture was taken within the perimeters of Winfrith Technology Centre, which is a secure site with no public access. The only people who go along that path are a few employees like myself who go for a walk at lunchtime. So a dog is very unlikely, although my own theory is that it is an exceptionally long fox dropping. The diameter is right for that.

Peter Dickinson said...

Off on a tangent I know but having seen my second reference to Edgar Broughton this week I thought you might like this.
Edgar Broughton chanted Out Demons Out and I became a fan

I enjoyed my visit to your blog. Take a look at mine if you get five.