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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Sunday, November 10, 2013

African Journal of Herpetology 62(2)

African Journal of Herpetology 62(2)

  • Bates, Michael F. and Ian T. Little. 2013. Predation on the eggs of ground-nesting birds by Dasypeltis scabra (Linnaeus, 1758) in the moist highland grasslands of South Africa. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 125-134. [ herp@nasmus.co.za]
  • Boudzoumou, Sylvestre, Daniel Hoops, Victor Mamonekene and Kate Jackson. 2013. Morphological variation in Monopeltis guentheri from forest habitat in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo (Squamata: Amphisbaenidae). African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 117-124. [ daniel.hoops@anu.edu.au]
  • Civantos, Emilio, Jesus Ortega, Pilar Lopez, Ana Perez-Cembranos, Valentin Perez-Mellado and Jose Martin. 2013. Diet selection by the threatened Chafarinas Skink Chalcides parallelus in North Africa. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 78-89. [ jose.martin@mncn.csic.es]
  • Keswick, Toby and Margaretha D. Hofmeyr. 2013. Population ecology of Psammobates oculiferi in a semi-arid environment. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 63-77. [ mdhofmeyr@uwc.ac.za]
  • Measey, G. John and Krystal A. Tolley. 2013. A molecular phylogeny for sub-Saharan amphisbaenians. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 100-108. [ john@measey.com]
  • Ramamonjisoa, Noelikanto, Harisoa Rakotonoely and Hannah Thomas. 2013. Spatial and temporal distribution of call activities of two Gephyromantis species (Mantellidae) along forest-farmbush habitat in Ranomafana, Madagascar. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 90-99. [ noelikanto@d.mbox.nagoya-u.ac.jp]
  • Santos, Livia Cristina dos. 2013. Discovery of the second specimen of the African amphisbaenian Monopeltis kabindae Witte & Laurent, 1942. African Journal of Herpetology. 62 (2): 109-116. [ liviacsantos@usp.br]

CRYPTOLINK: Is this wallaby Jeremy Beadle reincarnated?

Highgate Cemetery, the final resting place of Karl Marx and Jeremy Beadle, has recently become home to a wallaby
Highgate Cemetery, the final resting place of Karl Marx and Jeremy Beadle, has recently become home to a wallaby
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 (sometimes for the wrong reasons), usually posted up without any comment whatsoever from me. 

Highgate Cemetery, the final resting place of Karl Marx and Jeremy Beadle, has recently become home to a wallaby. 

The wallaby in question is, it turns out, far from dead, even though this is the principal requirement for those seeking permanent residence in Highgate Cemetery. In fact, it is alive and kicking. 

Its residency is well-testified. Unlike those brief and blurry films of the yeti or the Loch Ness Monster, video footage of the Highgate wallaby is crystal clear, and lasts a good few minutes. There are some sharp photographs, too.
‘It is quite extraordinary and so unexpected,’ says one of the guides, Melanie Winyard. ‘To spot a wallaby in London is quite strange. It’s a mystery how he got in, but now he’s in, it’s quite a good place to be as he won’t be crossing the roads.’ 

But how did the wallaby get there? Did someone bring him in and then abandon him? If so, the person in question was disobeying the rules, which forbid all pets other than guide dogs. 

A few years ago, America suffered a spate of granny-dumping, with senior citizens abandoned on freeways by their selfish offspring. Might this be a case of wallaby-dumping? On the other hand, it would have been hard for anyone wishing to smuggle a wallaby through the ticket office by the entrance gate. 

It is, I suppose, perfectly possible that someone disguised their wallaby as a very small, jumpy human being — Mr Speaker Bercow springs to mind — before sneaking him past the ticket-seller and setting him loose in Highgate Cemetery. But if this were the case, then Mr Bercow’s absence from the House of Commons would probably have been noted by now, and his excitable wife, Mrs Sally Bercow, would have kicked up a song-and-dance about it on her wide range of social media. Wallabies are not so rare in Britain as you might suppose. In 2005, the Rev Stephen Trott, a member of the General Synod of the Church of England, was returning from holiday in France when his Peugeot  406 collided with a wallaby that was attempting to cross the M1 near Junction 14 in Buckinghamshire.

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 are publishing a regular round-up of the stories as they come in. 

The worldwide mystery cat phenomenon (or group of phenomena, if we are to be more accurate) is not JUST about cryptozoology. At its most basic level it is about the relationship between our species and various species of larger cat. That is why, sometimes, you will read stories here which appear to have nothing to do with cryptozoology, but have everything to do with human/big cat interaction. As committed Forteans, we believe that until we understand the nature of these interactions, we have no hope of understanding the truth that we are seeking. 

  • VIDEO: Big cat panther sighting!
  • VIDEO: Black Panther - Panthera onca at Xcaret Riv...
  • VIDEO: Jaguar
  • UK SIGHTINGS: Evidence of British big cats discov...
  • NEWSLINKS: From bigcat.com
  • AUSTRALIA SIGHTINGS: Mystery deepens over big cat...
  • FEATURELINK: Nat Geo big cat gallery

  • VIDEO: Big Cat Advert

    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 took the plunge and started a 'Watcher of the Skies' blog of her own as part of the CFZ Bloggo Network.

    DALE DRINNON: The Sykesville monster, Frontiers of Anthropology, Benny's Blogs

    New at the Frontiers of Zoology:


    The Gonzo Daily - Sunday
    It is Sunday again and don't you know it
    so I will unleash my inner poet,
    and amuse myself spending some time
    doing the Gonzo blogs in rhyme
    We start with Dweezil Zappa who
    has debuted a brand new song WOOHOO!
    it's new for him, I mean, be glad
    it was, of course, written by his Dad
    Eric Burdon's next, a singer that
    is worth a few quid, now THAT'S a fact
    that's interesting but the really big news
    is that he's still the best at singing the blues
    And now a translated Italian review
    of Judy Dyble, a lady who
    makes music that is quite sublime
    I listen to her lots of the time
    An interview with Stephen Stills
    gives lots of literary thrills
    he talks about Buffalo Springfield and
    his really groovy new blues band
    The Gonzo Track of the day, today
    is by Joy Division WAYHAY!
    except it's not, now don't be sore
    its from when they were called Warsaw
    And finally a poetic nexus
    a dude who lives deep down in Texas
    Thom the World Poet is his name
    read his words, you won't be the same
    And that's enough from this poetic freak
    my lousy rhymes will be back next week

    *  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 54 who - together with his orange cat (who is currently on sick leave in Staffordshire) and two very small kittens (one of whom is also orange) 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 cat?

    OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today

    Yesterday’s News Today

    On this day in 1940 Screaming Lord Sutch was born. Sutch founded the Official Monster Raving Loony Party, which is perhaps Britain's most honest political party and for a time had a cat as a joint leader.

    And now the news:

  • Humpback whale spotted off Suffolk coast
  • Reporting wildlife crime is made easier with the l...
  • Rare orchid found in Scotland
  • Extinct Costa Rican frog rediscovered
  • Everyone Agreed: Cane Toads Would Be a Winner for ...
  • Attenborough: The forgotten story of Alfred Russel...

  • High Bat Mortality from Wind Turbines

  • One of Sutch's biggest poll results: