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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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

CRYPTOLINK: Momo The Documentary (Missouri Monster)

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. 

CRYPTOLINK: Bigfoot: Master of Camouflage

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. 

Our friends over at bigfootresearch.blogspot.com posted this great article about bigfoot and their ability to blend in with their surroundings. You got to check it out, and be sure to watch the video on their page!

"If most people walked right by a squatch in the woods, 9

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 that 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. 

BIG CAT WEEK on National Geographic

Abuse of circus animals comes to forefront of Lebanese politics.

Coalescent Species Delimitation in Milksnakes (genus Lampropeltis) and Impacts on Phylogenetic Comparative Analyses

Coalescent Species Delimitation in Milksnakes (genus Lampropeltis) and Impacts on Phylogenetic Comparative Analyses

  1. Frank T. Burbrink1,2
+ Author Affiliations
  1. 1. Department of Biology, College of Staten Island, 2800 Victory Blvd., Staten Island, NY 10314
  2. 2. The Graduate Center, City University of New York, 365 5th Avenue, NY, NY 10016
  3. 3. Department of Biology & Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, University of Washington, Box 351800, Seattle, WA 98195-1800
  4. 4. Department of Biological Sciences, The George Washington University, 2023 G St. NW, Washington, DC 20052
  1. *Corresponding author: email:sruane@amnh.org; phone: (212)-769-5734
  • Received August 21, 2012.
  • Revision received June 12, 2013.
  • Revision received November 2, 2013.
  • Revision received November 19, 2013.
  • Accepted November 27, 2013.


Both gene-tree discordance and unrecognized diversity are sources of error for accurate estimation of species trees, and can affect downstream diversification analyses by obscuring the correct number of nodes, their density, and the lengths of the branches subtending them. While the theoretical impact of gene-tree discordance on evolutionary analyses has been examined previously, the effect of unsampled and cryptic diversity has not. Here, we examine how delimitation of previously unrecognized diversity in the milksnake (Lampropeltis triangulum) and use of a species-tree approach affects both estimation of the Lampropeltis phylogeny and comparative analyses with respect to the timing of diversification. Coalescent species delimitation indicates that L. triangulum is not monophyletic and that there are multiple species of milksnake, which increases the known species diversity in the genus Lampropeltis by 40%. Both genealogical and temporal discordance occurs between gene trees and the species tree, with evidence that mtDNA introgression is a main factor. This discordance is further manifested in the preferred models of diversification, where the concatenated gene tree strongly supports an early burst of speciation during the Miocene, in contrast to species-tree estimates where diversification follows a birth-death model and speciation occurs mostly in the Pliocene and Pleistocene. This study highlights the crucial interaction among coalescent-based phylogeography and species delimitation, systematics, and species diversification analyses. 


The most important action any frog lover can take to help SAVE THE FROGS! is to become an Official Member today. Your financial support enables us to grow our movement, educate the masses, and implement on-the-ground actions that provide direct benefit to amphibians and their habitats. Just as important, the larger our supporter base, the easier it is for us to receive assistance from foundations, corporations, politicians and other nonprofits. Plus you get a great membership package when you join! So make your voice heard by joining SAVE THE FROGS! today. The frogs are disappearing fast, but we can save them -- with YOUR help.

Right now we are giving away copies of my new book The Story of SAVE THE FROGS! to all new members. You can't buy this book anywhere, not even on savethefrogs.com, but you can get your copy mailed to you when you sign up as the newest member of SAVE THE FROGS! at: http://savethefrogs.com/members

Story Save The Frogs

Thank you so much!
Kerry Kriger, Ph.D.
SAVE THE FROGS! Founder, Executive Director, Ecologist, Webmaster & Frog Lover
Red eye treefrog

Top 5 Reasons to become an Official Member of SAVE THE FROGS! today#1 -- Frogs are the most rapidly disappearing animals on the planet.
#2 -- Nobody does more to help frog populations than SAVE THE FROGS!
#3 -- You understand that our programs cost real money, and you care enough about the future of our planet to chip in.
#4 -- Your children and grandchildren will thank you for helping SAVE THE FROGS!
#5 -- You get awesome membership benefits!

"I love my membership! Please, please, become a member and help save some frogs and toads! Every member counts!"
-- Red Frog Member Franceska Zweifler; Bethesda, MD
"As a new member of Save The Frogs, I appreciate the welcoming letter and materials in the packet that I recently received.  The drawing by an 11 year old was especially delightful."
-- Dr. Vic Eichler; Amphibian Biologist, Three Rivers, MI

"We need to do something as a species to save these incredible and vital creatures. Thank you for everything that you and your team are doing". 
-- Green Frog Member Hazel Richards; Bruailles, France

Marsh Frog at Sunset by Selena Vanapruks, Age 13


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 - Tuesday
Graham at the helm, today.

This morning, Jon managed to get most (if not all) of his things done before heading off with Corinna and her mother, heading eastwards towards an area of the UK where snow is forecast. Corinna and I had problems figuring out how to open the back of the hire car, for loading everything in. She looked in the glove box for the car's instruction manual, but it was empty. I helpfully suggested that the manual was locked in the back! Anyway, Corinna figured it out after a few minutes, which spared us the hassle of having to use a websearch to get the info...
It's traditional that I have nice smelly fry-ups for breakfast when I have the house to myself, so the likes of bacon, eggs, mushrooms, garlic, sliced onion, and tomatoes - on toast - beckons after this Gonzo update is mailed out.
THE GONZO TRACK OF THE DAY: Rick Wakeman - Merlin the Magician

*  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?

Giant mythical creature from Cornish folklore is subject of video gameapp

ONE of Cornwall's mythical creatures has been brought to life in a computer game which is being sold all over the world.

The Owlman Of Mawnan Smith, an adventure game released last month by local developer Steve Parkes, features other characters from Cornish folklore, including piskies and mine knockers, as well as the Owlman itself.
  1. Stephen Parkes launches Owlman of Mawnan Smith game. Stephen Parkes pictured by Mawnan Church where a lot of the game is based.  Pic: Toby Weller Ref: TRTW20140107C-006_C
    Stephen Parkes launches Owlman of Mawnan Smith game. Stephen Parkes pictured by Mawnan Church where a lot of the game is based. Pic: Toby Weller Ref: TRTW20140107C-006_C

The myth of the Owlman is based on reported sightings of a huge flying creature near Mawnan Church in the Seventies, Eighties and Nineties.
All the artwork in the game is based on pictures taken around Cornwall, mostly from Mawnan woods and the Falmouth area.

Read on...

OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today