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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In between each episode of OTT, we now present OTTXtra. Here are three episodes pretty much at random:


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...

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

On the Track - still delayed...

... but not for much longer. It is actually finished now, but the upload that should have happened overnight failed at some ungodly hour of the morning. So we are doing it again now, and - accidents and computer failures notwithstanding - we are confident that it will be up tomorrow. Sorry for the delays...

WEIRD WEEKEND 2010: Latest News

OLL LEWIS WRITES: Thanks to Tell Tale Travel for kindly donating a pack of elephant prizes for the Weird Weekend.

Tell Tale Travel http://www.telltaletravel.co.uk/ specialise in soft adventure holidays to Thailand, Sri Lanka and Brazil. Mainly private tours for couples and families but they also do small group departures for solo travellers.

Great news as well if you're a male solo traveller and you like elephants because Tell Tale are looking for a man to join their group elephant holiday this November! It's two whole weeks of elephants as far as the eye can see, can you think of a better way to get away from a dreary cold British winter, I can't. Also you'll be the envy of all of your workmates when you get back (and probably your bosses too) when you regale everyone with stories of the fantastic experience of a lifetime you've just had and all the new friends you've made. The trip only has one space left and they've kept if for a man to balance the genders.

Mention the CFZ when you book with Tell Tale on the elephants or another trip and we'll receive a donation as well that we can put towards future projects.

We'll also have a number of very generous discount vouchers towards family and couples holidays available at Weird Weekend this year so if you're planning next year's holiday and want to take your family or a loved one on a holiday they will remember for the rest of their lives you know what to do...

Also, check out Tell Tale Travel's Facebook page

With less than two weeks to go, now might be a good time to buy your tickets to the best crypto-fortean event of the year....

Buy Your Tickets here



1. The Owlman and Others by Jonathan Downes (2)
2. Monsters of Texas by Ken Gerhard and Nick Redfern (3)
3= Monster - the A-Z of Zooform Phenomena by Neil Arnold (3)
3= In the wake of Bernard Heuvelmans by Michael Woodley (3)
5=. The Amateur Naturalist (and Exotic Petkeeper) #8 Edited by Max Blake (-)
5= Dark Dorset by Mark North and Robert Newland (3)
7= Big Cats in Britain 2006 by Mark Frazer (-)
7= The Mystery animals of Britain: Kent by Neil Arnold (1)
9= The Blackdown Mystery by Jon Downes (-)
9= Big Cats Loose in Britain by Marcus Matthews (3)


1. The Monsters of Texas by Ken Gerhard and Nick Redfern (2)
2. The Great Yokai Encyclopaedia by Richard Freeman (1)
3. Extraordinary Animals Revisited by Dr Karl Shuker (4)

4. The Mystery Animals of Ireland by Ronan Coghlan and Gary Cunningham (-)
5. Big Bird by Ken Gerhard (7)
6=. In the wake of Bernard Heuvelmans by Michael Woodley (6)
6= Dr Shuker's Casebook by Dr Karl Shuker (-)
6= Man Monkey: In search of the British Bigfoot by Nick Redfern (-)
9. Monster - the A-Z of Zooform Phenomena by Neil Arnold (-)
10. China: A Yellow Peril? by Richard Muirhead (-)

Last month's positions in this pinky colour, which I think is called cerise. July's sales have been dominated by two books - The Monsters of Texas and The Great Yokai Encyclopaedia. It has been a weird month with no discernable sales patterns. With another clutch of potential big sellers either just out or imminent, it will be interesting to see what happens this autumn.


Dr Shuker writes: Clues: it is the skull of a mythological(?) entity from somewhere in South America, and is totally genuine...sort of.

read on



Over on TetZoo, Darren Naish has news of a new mongoose from Madagascar. It has been named in honour of my greatest hero, the late Gerald Durrell. Darren writes: "While virtually nothing is known of the natural history of S. durrelli, its association with a marsh habitat and its relatively robust jaws and dentition suggest that it preys on crustaceans and molluscs, and perhaps also on amphibians, fish and so on."

Read on...


Chris Rickards writes in the latest ELG Newsletter:

"Large numbers of Clouded Yellows started appearing about 2 weeks ago with smaller numbers of Painted Ladies about the same time. Large Whites and Red Admirals are abundant. I've had Long-tailed Blue and Queen of Spain in the garden. First time for both in July. The weather has been hot, windy and extremely dry and a number of odd species have shown up in Brittany, including Cardinal and Lang's Short-tailed Blue. I have also seen large numbers of Carcharodus alceae, The Mallow Skipper. Previously, I've only seen this species on the dry south coast and Gulf of Morbihan, but in the last month it appears to be moving around and north. Last week this species was flying at Cap Frehel, on the north coast.

I would be interested to hear of any Monarch arrivals. Monarchs almost certainly arrive in Brittany as often as they do in Cornwall, but nobody's looking."

As I write most months, I cannot recommend the ELG (Entomological Livestock Group) newsletter highly enough. Twelve quid a year gets you monthly newsletters packed with wants, sales, and snippets of entomological information. Details from:

The Editor, Paul W. Batty, 50
Burns Road, Dinnington,
Sheffield, S25 2LN. England.

E-Mail: pwbelg@clara.co.uk


OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today


On this day in 1962 Marilyn Monroe was found dead. There are a lot of conspiracy theories surrounding the death of Monroe, but most of the theories seem to be based on wishful thinking that by the end of her life she wasn’t an egotistical drugs dustbin.
And now, the news:

Hunt on for 6ft boa constrictor
Gang defends video of fox death
UK biggest wasp nest found
‘Big cat’ startles jogger
Do snails have a 'homing instinct'?
Farmer raises two-legged lamb
Woman catches four million mosquitoes
Dog Saves Drunk Man's Life By Eating His Toe
Beef from offspring of clone eaten
Cow Gives Birth To A Pig: Photo

After my screw up yesterday, fingers crossed that the hyperlink actually works today:



I am still running several days late, because of illness, Weird Weekendery, and lots of visitors. However, Darren Naish's book was finished yesterday, and I have every expectation that OTT will be finished today. At least I bloody well hope so.