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...

Search This Blog



Click on this logo to find out more about helping CFZtv and getting some smashing rewards...


Unlike some of our competitors we are not going to try and blackmail you into donating by saying that we won't continue if you don't. That would just be vulgar, but our lives, and those of the animals which we look after, would be a damn sight easier if we receive more donations to our fighting fund. Donate via Paypal today...

Monday, April 26, 2010

LINDSAY SELBY: The Black Bird of Chernobyl

Mothman was said to have been seen when disaster threatened. It is not the only winged creature to be seen before a disaster. The Black Bird of Chernobyl was said to herald the explosion at a nuclear plant in the Ukraine. On April 26, 1986, a massive explosion rocked the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. Thirty people died immediately, followed by other deaths from radiation poisoning. For nine days the reactor continued to burn, resulting in tremendous environmental damage. The local population has suffered with the consequences ever since. The Chernobyl Disaster, as it was called, is considered the worst accident in the history of nuclear power.

In the days before the tragic occurrence several Chernobyl employees had reported seeing a large, dark/ black shape like a headless man with gigantic wings and red, fire-like, eyes. As with the appearances of Mothman, people who had seen the phenomena had been having nightmares and some received strange phone calls. Some of the employees reported the strange things to their supervisors at the plant. Whether any sort of action was taken is unknown. After the explosion helicopters were brought in to drop extinguishing agents on the flames. Some of the pilots and the surviving workers said they saw a giant black bird flying away from the smoking reactor. Described by many as “a large black, bird-like creature, with a 20-foot wingspan, gliding through the swirling plumes of smoke." The bird has not been seen again.

The theory out forward was that the bird was a rare black stork. However, the stork has a clear visible head and its wingspan is only about 6 feet (1.9 metres), and it stands about 3 feet (1 metre) tall. It also would not explain the strange dreams and phone calls. So was this winged creature a portent of the disaster? There are other tales such as (but not the only story) Mothman about winged creatures being seen before disaster. We can only wait and see if more tales surface, though I rather hope they don’t if it portends something bad happening.


Anonymous said...

Years ago, when I was a mere student at a certain research station "down south" [1], a curious tale reached my ears. It seems that quite a lot of routine sampling goes on, and one out-station routinely sucks air through large filter papers, to get a baseline reading for how much atmospheric particulate is in the air.

This place has been taking these samples for decades, and there exist records of baseline air samples going back before World War 2, with but one break in recording.

For the few days that the Chernobyl cloud was over the UK, the filters were apparently much dirtier than was normal; almost black sometimes. No analysis was done on these filters, for a man from the Government arrived and demanded that all the samples be handed over for special analysis, the results to be sent back. No results were ever forthcoming. It would appear that HM Government preferred that the contamination levels were kept secret, for some reason.

[1] I could be more specific here, but frankly would prefer not to since keyword searches might bring more scrutiny than I like.

Anonymous said...

Its weird that this story should appear now, as I going to Belarus in 2 weeks time on a Chernobyl related buisness.
I am going to meet the family of a young girl who has stayed with my wife and I for one month for the last five years for health reasons relating to the contamination of her home town by fall-out from Chernobyl.
7 months ago a married couple in their 40's reported to me they had seen a tall black red eyed figure right here in my home town.
Strange, but as Doc Shiels would say "There is no such thing as a coincidence."