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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Saturday, August 06, 2011



DAVEY CURTIS: Rock Lobster

Dear Jon,

Here are some photo's of a fresh water crayfish that Tatyana spotted (our new Belarusian C.F.Z rep?) whilst we were out for a walk in the woods at Barnard Castle County Durham. We hope the pics maybe able to identify it as a native.

see you soon

Dave, Joanne, Rosie and eagle eyed Tatyana.

Max Writes:

I can't confidently identify the crayfish, the ultimate 'silver bullet' for identifying the two species found up north (the colour on the underside of the claws) is invisible in the photos, though I cannot blame anyone for not wanting to pick them up to check! Just incase you got a hint of the underside colour, white-clawed crays (the British native) is white to pink on the underside, but the American signal/red-claw is, guess what, red underneath. I have first hand experience with both species (signals at uni, and white-claws at Bristol Zoo) and the red underside is by far the easiest aid to identification.

Have a look here: http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk/static/documents/Leisure/Crayfish_Identify.pdf

Ignore the shape of the claws on the signal in the photo they use: it is an old male which typically grow huge claws. Yours looks smaller (say, 10-12cm) which puts it in the size range of both species.

If I was to have to take a stab, I would say it was an American signal crayfish. There are hints in the second photograph that there is red on the underside of the claws. This is probably the most common species in your area, so I would stick with that as the identification.

CASSIE MORRISON: Have you ever noticed...

How much Nick Redfern’s THREE MEN SEEKING MONSTERS resembles Hermann Hesse’s JOURNEY TO THE EAST?

What? You haven’t read THREE MEN SEEKING MONSTERS? Then you’re no friend of mine...that’s all.

Oh, you read THAT...it’s the other one?

Download it from my blog then. It’s in pdf format which is compatible with most e-readers out there.


HAUNTED SKIES: Another one from the archives


OLL LEWIS: Yesterday's News Today


On this day in 1957 the legendary comic actor Oliver Hardy died.
And now the news:

Fossils of Forest Rodents Found in Highland Desert...
Live rat found in loaf
20-million year-old fossil found
Ammodytoides Leptus, A New Species Of Sand Lance
Greyfriars Bobby was a scam to lure tourists
Killer shrimp 'worst alien invader'
Horse grows seven-inch moustache, has no plans to ...

Tash! Ah-aa! Saviour of the universe! (unless I heard those lyrics wrong) :


Dear folks

Just to let you know that the deadline for submissions of articles, Notes & Queries, to Flying Snake 2 is Sept 1 2011, for publication on or near Oct 1.


Yours sincerely

Richard Muirhead
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