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, March 13, 2013

CRYPTOLINK: Tasmania: Hunting the fabled Tasmanian tiger

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. 

Not five hours after landing in Tasmania, I was face to face with a thing called a thylacine. This notorious marsupial, commonly known as the Tasmanian tiger, and technically as Thylacinus cynocephalus (“Dog-headed pouch dog”) was once unique to Australia’s offshore state. Now it’s supposedly extinct, though you’ll get a different opinion on that from every one of the island’s half a million citizens. Surviving black-and-white video footage of the Tassie tiger makes recognising one straightforward enough. I would describe it as part dog, part hyena: a loping, ginger-furred carnivore with a wide yawn, long tail and dark stripes down its back.

Read on...


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.

Mission to save jaguar exposes big cats' plight in Brazil

DALE DRINNON: Cedar & Willow/Benny's Blogs

Somewhere along  we seem to have slipped a cog, I was holding back a day because I thought you had missed one. Never mind. Here are the links for the past two days. It was not such a big back-up except we have been having a big run at Cedar and Willow:
New at Cedar and Willow:
New at Benny's blog for Thelma Todd:
And New at Benny's second blog, The Ominous Octopus Omnibus:


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.

Now available through the open access journal Biology

Now available through the open access journal Biology

Biology, Volume 2, Issue 1 (March 2013)


Drought, Deluge and Declines: The Impact of Precipitation Extremes on Amphibians in a Changing Climate
 Susan C. Walls, William J. Barichivich and Mary E. Brown
2013, 2, 399-418; doi:10.3390/biology2010399


I was up with Corinna watching TV until gone 4:00 this morning so we are running a little late. Outside it cannot seem to make up its mind whether it is spring or winter: one day there are dense flurries of snow, the next brilliant sunshine. All the spring flowers are looking somewhat battered by hail and snow, and the snowdrops and Lenten lilies outside my study window are semi-flattened. If this horrible weather is indeed our fault as a species, then we are certainly reaping what we have sown.
Once again we repair to Austin for our daily audience with Thom the World Poet
Helen McCookerybook is having a tineid problem. Lepidopterists rule ok?
Rob Ayling sent me this fascinating vintage French language documentary about the early days of Virgin Records

*  The Gonzo Daily is a two way process. If you have any news or want to write for us, please contact me at  jon@eclipse.co.uk. If you are an artist and want to showcase your work or even just say hello,  please write to me at gonzo@cfz.org.uk. Please copy, paste and spread the word about this magazine as widely as possible. We need people to read us in order to grow, and as soon as it is viable we shall be invading more traditional magaziney areas. Join in the fun, spread the word, and maybe if we all chant loud enough we CAN stop it raining. See you tomorrow....

*  The Gonzo Daily is, as the name implies, a daily online magazine (mostly) about artists connected to the Gonzo Multimedia group of companies. But it also has other stuff as and when the editor feels like it. The same team also do a weekly newsletter called - imaginatively - The Gonzo Weekly. Find out about it at this link:
* We should probably mention here, that some of our posts are links to things we have found on the internet that we think are of interest. We are not responsible for spelling or factual errors in other people's websites. Honest guv!

*  Jon Downes, the editor of all these ventures (and several others) is an old hippy of 53 who - together with his orange cat (who is currently on sick leave in Staffordshire) and a not very small orange kitten (who isn't) - puts it all together from a converted potato shed in a tumbledown cottage deep in rural Devon, which he shares with various fish. He is ably assisted by his lovely wife 
Corinna, his bulldog/boxer Prudence, his elderly mother-in-law, and a motley collection of social malcontents. Plus... did we mention the orange cats?

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today

Yesterday’s News Today

On this day in 2006 a true visionary of our times died. That man was Robert C. Baker, inventor of the chicken nugget, chicken hotdog sausage and turkey ham. Many people will probably turn their noses up in a snobbish manner at that list of inventions but think of what they have done. They put cheap meat of passable quality into the price ranges of even the poorest members of society and that led to an improvement of diet in the world, which has increased life expectancy and given mankind on average taller and stronger bodies than we had a few generations ago. It has also seen less of the animal going to waste in food production. Now... if only food processing companies would stop adding things like horses to the recipes we'd be laughing.
And now,  the news:
  • Do we need to cull 50% of UK's deer?
  • Parts of 1400 tigers seized in Asia in 13 years in...
  • Hare Removal – Battle for hares hots up as shootin...
  • A New Cryptic Spider Species from Africa
  • Bees Get a Buzz from Flower Nectar Containing Caff...
  • Prairie Dogs Disperse When All Close Kin Have Disa...
  • Red squirrels given boost as greys are targeted
  • 'Extinct' butterfly rediscovered in South Africa

  • One of Tim Vine's jokes is: what cheese do you use to hide a horse? Mascarpone. Here's a few more: