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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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, February 06, 2013


The hunt for British Big Cats attracts far more newspaper-column inches than any other cryptozoological subject. There are so many of them now that we feel that they should be archived by us in some way, so we should have a go at publishing a regular round-up of the stories as they come in. In September 2012 Emma Osborne decided that the Mystery Cat Study Group really deserved a blog of its own within the CFZ Blog Network.

Cougar attack boy gets award
New big cat sighting reported in Glenrothes

NATURAL HISTORY: Extinction exhibition: Not The End Of The World?

Extinction: Not The End Of The World? opens at the Natural History Museum in south-west London on Feb 8th.

A dodo looks forlornly from within its glass cage while a dinosaur skull sits menacingly on a pole - both surveying a room filled with fellow casualties of extinction, as well as endangered species.

The flightless bird met its doom in the 17th century - and the fearsome Chasmosaurus belli died out around 150million years ago. And a bluefin tuna suspended above a giant food can serves to highlight the plight of endangered species.

They form part of a new exhibition - called Extinction: Not The End Of The World? - at the Natural History Museum in south-west London.

But the purpose of the display, which opens on Saturday, is to take you beyond the dodos and dinosaurs to discover species that prospered in the wake of others’ demise. 

In other words, the message is: extinction is not always a bad thing.

Read on.....

CRYPTOLINK: Bethel newspaper is rounding up Y-K tales of Hairy Man, aka Bigfoot

A word about cryptolinks: We are not responsible for the content of cryptolinks, which are merely links to outside articles that we think are interesting, usually posted up without any comment whatsoever from me.  
The Delta Discovery in Bethel isn't taking sides on whether the fabled Hairy Man - a Y-K Delta version of Bigfoot - is a "real animal." But last week the paper published the first in what it says will be a series of accounts of alleged sightings, and it's calling on locals to share accounts they may have been keeping to themselves. Understandably,  the paper is offering anonymity to its contributors.
Here in the Bethel area, many people’s introduction to Hairy Man was through the creature we came to know of as “Gabriel Fox” in the 1960s. It’s the story of a young boy who ran away from the Children’s Home near Kwethluk and survived in the wilderness by turning into a Hairy Man. But big questions remain: How could a boy turn into a hairy creature that lived in the extreme wild? Was it really Gabriel Fox, and not a young Bigfoot that was starving and raiding fishcamps for food when it was caught? Why did the military and/or the US government say nothing about him after they took him away? And most importantly, why didn’t they return him home? ...
Some sightings are of the creature itself. Some reports are of the tracks it leaves behind, its glowing eyes, its repugnant smell, the rocks they throw toward people, or the sounds it makes. There are stories from Chevak to Kotlik, and from Kotlik to Pilot Station. Some sightings are also along the Kuskokwim River, from McGrath area to Bethel, and up the Johnson River. But the greatest numbers of sightings are between the mouth of the Yukon River to Pilot Station, and around Tuluksak, a village that is sort of situated all by itself between Akiak and Kalskag.
Read more at The Delta Discovery: Hairy Man in the Y-K Delta


In an article for the first edition of Cryptozoology Bernard Heuvelmans wrote that cryptozoology is the study of 'unexpected animals' and following on from that perfectly reasonable assertion, it seems to us that - whereas the study of out of place birds may not have the glamour of the hunt for bigfoot, or lake monsters - it is still a perfectly valid area for the Fortean Zoologist to be interested in. So, after about six months of regular postings on the main bloggo, Corinna has taken the plunge and started a 'Watcher of the Skies' blog of her own as part of the CFZ Bloggo Network.

RSPB: Bring the life back to our countryside


Bring the life back to our countryside

Female lapwing in rushy pasture, Northumberland
When you picture the countryside, what do you see?
Rolling green hills alive with the sights and sounds of wildlife? Trees full of birdsong? Insects buzzing between hedgerows? Butterflies flitting from flower to flower? Our countryside is iconic, inspiring countless books, songs and poems.
But things aren’t quite as they seem.

Help stop the declines

Changes to farming techniques over the last 40 years, driven by EU policy, have had a devastating impact on nature. Numbers of birds like turtle doves, lapwings and skylarks have declined by over 50% since the 1970s.
These and many more of the UK's most loved species are disappearing at a terrifying rate - and could soon be lost forever without your help.
But now more and more farmers are asking for our support and advice to help put things right.

Let's think bigger

Saving wildlife in the UK countryside has been one of the RSPB's top priorities for the past 20 years, and we've taken huge strides forward in that time. We’re finding ways to help reverse the declines of farmland birds, and sharing these techniques with farmers across the UK. We already have a team of expert advisers and a band of dedicated volunteers.
But to reverse the decline of our cherished birds and other wildlife we need to think bigger... and we need your help to make this happen.

We know we can do it

We need more staff to get out in their wellies on farmland across the UK, to share effective and practical ways of making farms more wildlife-friendly. And we've identified 24 areas where we believe focusing our advice will make a big difference.
We're passionate about this approach, because we know it works. Recent successes with stone-curlews, corncrakes and cirl buntings have proved it can be done.
With your help, we can support people to come together to help wildlife. Our team will work alongside them every step of the way, but the farmers and the volunteers from their local communities will be the real heroes.

Your chance to help

This renewed effort to tackle this huge problem will cost £1 million. We’ve already secured £150,000 from the EU LIFE+ fund, which leaves us £850,000 short. We can’t do this vital work without your help, so if you can, please donate today.
Nature is declining right across our countryside, but by stepping up for nature and donating £20, or whatever you can afford, you can help us bring the life back.
Nick Droy
Head of RSPB Conservation Management Advice
PS If you've already donated to this appeal, thankyou for your support
Donate now


Graham writes... so far as the Gonzo / CFZ computers and modem connection are concerned, we are - as the Chinese say - living in interesting times. However, I reflected as I fed the chickens this morning, that life goes on and things could be worse. My Dell computer, now eight years old, still seems happy to take up the burden and I'll be rather sorry when it finally has to be retired from the digital front line.

Jon and Corinna are out doing a few things around town, so I've posted today's crop of stories:


LINK: Jefferson Starship at the Borderline



LINK: Yes' Chris Squire on Their Classic Album Tour, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, 'I've never closed the idea of working with Jon Anderson again'

GALAHAD: Free Download Of 'De-Constructing Ghosts'

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today