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...

Saturday, January 17, 2015

CFZ PEOPLE: Richard Thorns

'If you turned around and saw a pink-headed duck it would be like seeing... Elvis Presley'

By Kent and Sussex Courier | Posted: January 16, 2015

By Sarah Ward sarah.ward@courier.co.uk

A BIRDWATCHER from Crowborough will embark on his fifth trip to Burma this week in memory of a friend who shared his dream of finding a bird believed to be extinct since the 1960s.

Richard Thorn, 51, who visited the country last January on his quest to find a pink-headed duck deemed "probably extinct", will leave on Friday to continue his search which began 16 years ago.

He will visit the town of Shwegu, in Burma's Kachin State in memory of his friend Tony Htin Hla, chairman of The Biodiversity and Nature Conservation Association, who believed the ducks may still be living in lakes bordering the town before his death from liver cancer.

Mr Thorn, an ambulance care assistant, said: "Last time I went was about one year ago – the area we went to had never been surveyed before because it was so remote.

"My theory is if you have one wetland that somebody says they saw a pink-headed duck, if you look there and don't find it, it doesn't mean it is extinct.

"Let's say it is not there, for safety reasons it could have relocated but it is a totally different thing – it means everyone is looking in the wrong place."

Mr Thorn first started his quest when working at Hoopers department store in Tunbridge Wells.

He visited Tunbridge Wells library on a lunch break and picked up a book, which described the fabled bird.

Since then he has spent more than £10,000 on his dream – and said it is worth every penny.

WEIRD WEEKEND 2015: Provisional Running Order

Tickets will be on sale over the next few days

CFZ PEOPLE: Naomi West

Naomi West

Happy Birthday, Naomi (pictured here with Olhada, her lovebird)


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 - Saturday
And so we come to the end of another week. It has been a long and convoluted one, made very pleasant by the presence of my eldest stepsprog and her husband, and complicated by the fact that the doctor has given me surprisingly large doses of Valium to treat something nasty that I have done to my neck muscles, and I have therefore been off my head most of the week, and with a tendency to fall asleep at the slightest provocation.
It was for my neck, honest, and it seems to be doing the trick, because for the first time in some weeks I am not in considerable pain, and even more immobility, but it is the first time in more decades than I like to acknowledge that I have been trying to carry out my daily tasks through a miasma of drug induced wooziness, and I know that, at last, I am getting old. Because I look back at those unfortunate days to which I alluded in the last paragraph and think “bloody hell, I used to do this for fun!”
The Gonzo Weekly #113
Rick Wakeman, Jethro Tull, Renaissance, John Lennon, Jon Anderson, Yes, Hawkwind, and Daevid Allen fans had better look out!
The latest issue of Gonzo Weekly (#113) will soon be available to read at www.gonzoweekly.com, and to download at http://www.gonzoweekly.com/pdf/. It has Rick Wakeman on the front cover and everything you will want to know about his new tour, Jon reviews a book which wonders what would have happened if John Lennon had left the Beatles back in 1960, we send Richard Stellar to a desert island, givce you the new Renaissance tour dates, and there are shows from the multi-talented Neil Nixon at Strange Fruit and from M Destiny at Friday Night Progressive, and the titular submarine dwellers are still lost at sea. There is also a collection of more news, reviews, views, interviews and antyichinuses looking for clues (OK, nothing to do with small marsupials playing at being Sherlock Holmes, but I got carried away with things that rhymed with OOOOS) than you can shake a stick at. And the best part is IT's ABSOLUTELY FREE!!!
Read the previous few issues of Gonzo Weekly:
All issues from #70 can be downloaded at www.gonzoweekly.com if you prefer. If you have problems downloading, just email me and I will add you to the Gonzo Weekly dropbox. The first 69 issues are archived there as well. Information is power chaps, we have to share it!
You can download the magazine in pdf form HERE:

* 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/…/all-gonzo-news-wots-fit
* 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 55 who - together with an infantile orange cat named after a song by Frank Zappa 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 infantile orange cat?


ON THIS DAY IN 1900 - Mormon Brigham Roberts was denied a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives for his practicing of polygamy. 

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