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 the last three episodes:


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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...

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Cracking review of Norfolk Bird & Mammal Report 2009 on Birdguides.com

The hefty package that dropped through the letterbox the other day held great promise, as I was expecting my review copy of the Norfolk Bird & Mammal Report for 2009. The nation's premier birding county is a veritable mecca for birders from across the country, so big things are always expected of the report.

Published by the Norfolk & Norwich Naturalists' Society (N&NNS), the report certainly delivers and is a comprehensive summary of the year, with plenty of background information to while away many an evening. The individual articles make good reading, pitched at various levels for the widely differing readership. There is a real focus on 'forms' as well, with articles looking at the occurrence of 'Greenland' Common Redpoll, Icelandic Redwing and eastern Lesser Whitethroat, although the lack of promised sketches with the latter was unfortunate. Adding to this are documentation of the first modern breeding records of Red Kite — and a summary of the last historical record — and a summary of the origins of Great Yarmouth's Mediterranean Gulls.

It's easy to just focus on the birds, but the mammal report is also a cracking read. It is as complete as any I've seen, and includes maps and details accounts of most species. The account of the county's second record of Sowerby's Beaked Whale is an exciting read, but perhaps the less said about the photo of the straight-sided penis of a Whiskered Bat the better.

Read on...


UNCONVENTION 2010: Mark Chadbourn/Natasha Mostert/Adam Nevill - PANEL: Forteana and Fiction

CFZ AUSTRALIA: An Australian Montauk Monster


LARS THOMAS: Ye Olde Fin Whale

During the summer of 2010 a fin whale spent several weeks swimming around the inner Danish waters. Finally it ended up stranded in a fiord just outside the town of Vejle where, after a lenghty debate in the Danish media about whether to put it out of its misery or not, it ended up dying. Nothing special there; whales beach themselves all over the place; but analysis of the dead animal has now revealed that it was somewhere between 131 and 140 years old when it died - most scientists had judged it to be some 30-40 years old when it was first seen alive. So all the thoughts about a young whale getting lost was quite a bit off the mark.

OLL LEWIS: The Ancient Sea-monsters of India


Once again, in the absence of any news from the India expedition, Oll Lewis visits another interesting facet of Indian cryptozoology.


We are always looking for new people to get involved with the bloggo, but specifically we are looking for someone to impliment a new feature that I have in mind. It won't take more than 20 minutes a day, and involves slight knowledge of html. If you fit the bill and want to join the bloggo family please email me on jon@eclipse.co.uk

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today


On this day in 1971 NASA’s Mariner 9 went into orbit around Mars, becoming the first man-made object to orbit an alien planet.
And now, the news:

INTERPOL co-ordinated operation targeting illegal ...
Orissa Bans Fishing During Olive Ridley Turtles Br...
Seal found in main street of Scottish town
Is South China's rare tiger fighting back?
Mummies of 15th century dogs discovered in Peru
Goldfish the latest weapon to protect world leader...
Scientists discover unknown lizard species at lunc...
Weird beasts spook couple - UK
Mystery of how cats lap is revealed
Woman annoyed by deer ringing her doorbell
Headless Goat Found in NW Atlanta Neighborhood
Turkeys terrorize New York neighborhood

Close enough:

UNCONVENTION 2010: Jan Bondeson - Queen Victoria's stalker.