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...

Monday, January 27, 2014

GLEN VAUDREY, Northern-art-style Bigfoot painting

My latest cryptozoology painting is now for sale on  eBay. This great painting captures a couple of folk having an unexpected encounter with Bigfoot. 

Bigfoot has been painted many times but this could well be the first time in the Northern School style.

This contemporary painting, which is oil on stretched canvas, measures approx. 9" x 12" and is in excellent condition with lovely vibrant colours.


What has Corinna's column of fortean bird news got to do with Cryptozoology?

Well, everything actually!

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. 


The Gonzo Daily - Monday
I have never liked the transition period before going  away, whether its for an expedition or for something more mundane. I know that some people experience a frisson of excitement, but to me it is always horribly reminiscent of the last day of the school holidays before I went back to boarding school. I didn't mind being at boarding school too much, although the concept that they were the 'happiest days of my life' is lost on me and on the whole, being at home wasn't too bad either (as long as my father and I were on speaking terms, which we usually weren't) but the day before the journey back to my crappy little alma mater was sheer, unadulterated hell.
Of course today isn't anything like that, but there seems to be a million and a half things to do: blogs to be written in advance, kittens to be packed into their travelling crate and sent to Helen's house, animals to be fed and instructions given to Graham, the hire car to be collected, Mother's packing to be supervised, and - in the middle of all this - Graham is trying to finish my tax return. Bloody hell, I will be glad when this is all over.
Thank you to everyone who makes kind remarks about my stupid poetry on the occasions that I take it into my head to do both the CFZ and the Gonzo blogs in rhyme (the same rhyme with a few words changed). Especial thanks to Faye Rutherford who thinks that Dr Seuss has nothing on me! That is very kind of you m'dear, but I have never approached the lyrical genius of 'Green Eggs and Ham', nor, sadly, am I likely to. Whereas I have loved Kipling's poetry since I was about six, Dr Seuss was the poet I first admired, and that admiration has never gone away.
By the way, people, I am also the editor of the rather wonderful Gonzo Weekly, a free, anarchic music magazine featuring all sorts of groovy stuff. To make sure that you don't miss your copy of the next issue make an old hippy a happy chappy and subscribe:
MISS CRYSTAL GRENADE: "....is this the most lyrically developed vocal artist since Tori Amos?
*  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: www.gonzo-multimedia.blogspot.com/2012/11/all-gonzo-news-wots-fit-to-print.html
* 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, and sometimes a small Indian frog. 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?


Today my father would have been 89. We disliked each other intensely for much of his life, but I owe all that I am to him.

ANDREW MAY: Words from the Wild Frontier

News and stories from the remoter fringes of the CFZ blogosphere...


CFZ PEOPLE: Nick Wadham

Happy Birthday, dude

Want proof evolution is real? Just look at creationism

At the Creation Museum in Kentucky, a kid rides the triceratops statue. Just like our ancestors did, or something.
Wikimedia Commons
At the Creation Museum in Kentucky, a kid rides the triceratops statue. Just like our ancestors did, or something.

This episode of Inquiring Mindsa podcast hosted by best-selling author Chris Mooney and neuroscientist and musician Indre Viskontas, also features a discussion of science in President Obama’s past (and future) State of the Union addresses, and the science of how short-term memory worksTo catch future shows right when they are released, subscribe to Inquiring Minds via iTunes or RSS. We are also available on Stitcher and on Swell. You can follow the show on Twitter at @inquiringshow and like us on Facebook. Inquiring Mindswas also recently singled out as one of the “Best of 2013″ shows on iTunes — you can learn more here.
Last week, we learned about the latest science education outrage. Writing at Slate, the pro-evolution activist Zach Kopplin highlighted the anti-science content that is apparently being taught in some state-funded Texas charter schools. That includes student biology workbooks that reportedly describe evolution as “dogma” and an “unproven theory.”
It’s just the latest of countless infringements upon accurate science education across the country in recent decades. The “war on science” in national politics has nothing on the war playing out every day in public schools, even if the latter is usually less visible. The attacks are diverse and ever-changing, showing a wide array of tactics and strategies. “If nothing else evolves,” explains longtime evolution defender Eugenie Scott on the latest installment of the Inquiring Minds podcast, “religion does. Creationism does.”

Scott spoke to us on the occasion of her stepping down as the director of the National Center for Science Education (NCSE), an organization that started out in her basement three decades ago and has since become the chief tracker of political and ideological attacks on science education across the United States. Joining the conversation was Scott’s successor, Ann Reid, who led the sequencing of the 1918 flu virus at the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology in the mid-2000s, and most recently served as director of the American Academy of Microbiology.

Eugenie Scott and Ann Reid, past and current directors of the National Center for Science Education.
Eugenie Scott and Ann Reid, past and current directors of the National Center for Science Education.

Reid — who opined on the show that when it comes to attacks on science, you have to take the “long view” — will certainly be busy: NCSE recently added defending the teaching of climate science to its portfolio. That’s in part because conservatives have started including attacks on climate science in some of their proposed science teaching bills at the state level.
NCSE monitors all this action at state legislatures, school boards, and even in individual schools in some cases. And what emerges, again and again, is a process that looks very evolutionary: Teaching creationism in public schools has been repeatedly blocked in the courts, but anti-evolution advocates are constantly coming up with new strategies, new ways in which they hope to succeed.

Read on...

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today

Yesterday’s News Today

On this day in 1950 Derek Acorah, the 'medium' for the first few series of Most Haunted, was born.
And now the news:

  • Kenyan rhino killed in brazen attack despite new l...
  • Not seen in over 130 years, 'extinct' frog redisco...
  • Record Total Lengths of the American Alligator in ...
  • New species of wasp discovered by Canadian scienti...
  • Hacker group “Anonymous” takes down Japanese prefe...
  • Altered Images: Malaysian printer blacks out pigs'...
  • State-sanctioned Wolf Kills in Northern Rockies, M...
  • Minsmere: RSPB explains culling of its red deer

  • Rainforests in Far East shaped by humans for the l...

  • Acorah once managed to get 'possessed' by a spirit whose name was an anagram of 'Derek Faker'; make of that what you will: