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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Wednesday, May 30, 2012


CFZ Classics is a new venture for us. There are many seminal works that are either unavailable today, or not available with the production values which we would like to see. So, following the old adage that if you want to get something done do it yourself, this is exactly what we have done.

Desiderius Erasmus Roterodamus (b. October 18th 1466, d. July 2nd 1536) said: “When I have a little money, I buy books; and if I have any left, I buy food and clothes,” and we are much the same. Only, we are in the lucky position of being able to share our books with the wider world. CFZ Classics is a conduit through which we cannot just re-issue titles which we feel still have much to offer the cryptozoological and Fortean research communities of the 21st Century, but we are adding footnotes, supplementary essays, and other material where we deem it appropriate.

Starting with Fritz W. Up De Graaf’s Headhunters of the Amazon (1921) which tells an extraordinary story that simply would not get published today even if any contemporary explorer or adventurer had the opportunity or the cojones to do what Up De Graaf and his companions did so blithely a century ago. However, this is not just a schoolboy tale of derring-do, but contains much fascinating socio-cultural information about the eponymous head-hunters of the title and some fascinating cryptozoological snippets. Could there indeed be a hitherto undiscovered species of giant stork luring in the Amazon jungle? Could it be the same as a prehistoric creature whose remains have been discovered in the same area? And could sightings of such a rara avis explain modern day accounts of pterosaurs reported across central and South America with monotonous regularity?

This book sets out the stall for CFZ Classics. It is lavishly illustrated, not only with the original pictures from the original volume but with contemporary engravings and photographs which - we feel – do much to enhance the zeitgeist of the book and the reading experience. Here we would like to thank the massively talented Gareth Shaw who worked so hard on the cover illustration, and who – like us – is a devotee of a style of art, which like so many of the explorers whose thrilling exploits its illustrated, doesn’t seem to be around in the rarefied and ever so slightly decadent days. And there’s more. One of the most important aspects of this entire project is that, because all the books which are being produced by CFZ Classics are out of copyright and in the public domain, the author royalties from it will be paid to the person who did all the work preparing this new edition. This provides a unique, and we hope entertaining, way for impecunious cryptozoological researchers around the world to fund their activities.

I hope you agree with us that CFZ Classics is an eminently worthy new project for us.

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