Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Bigfoot Quest - Tonight

From Bob Coyne and Mike Killen:

Hello Everyone:

Please join your hosts Bob Coyne and Mike Killen as we discuss how an interested novice can get involved in Bigfoot/Sasquatch field research and the basic equipment needed to get started. For those of you that have had an interest in this research and have always wanted to get out in the field to join the quest for the answers to this enduring mystery but just didn't know how to go about it, this is a must listen show! If you are able, please join us in our chat room. It's always fun and we love to interact live with our listeners.

Where: www.blogtalkradio.com/Bigfoot_Quest

When: Tonight, Tuesday Sept. 29 2009

Time: 9:00 P.M. Eastern

Duration: 90 Minutes

Bob Coyne
Mike Killen

Orang-Pendek Developments

This just in from the head-office of the CFZ in England:

For Immediate Release 29th September


The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) is the world’s largest mystery animal research group. Only a week after releasing footage of what appears to be anomalous animals in an Irish lake, a group of four British explorers and scientists from the CFZ have just returned from the jungles of Sumatra having spent two weeks in the rain-forest on the track of the orang-pendek, an unknown species of upright walking ape.

They have brought back some incredible news.

CFZ member Dave Archer and local guide Sahar saw the creature at a distance of around 100 feet as it squatted in a tree. Dave describes it as broad shouldered, with a large head, black skin and dark brown hair. A line of darker fur was visible on the spine. He likened the coat of the creature to that of a mountain gorilla. Sahar saw the creature jump down from the tree and walk away on its hind legs. It was the size of an adult male chimpanzee.

Next to the tree was some rattan vine that the animal was apparently chewing. Expedition leader Adam Davis has preserved part of the plant in ethanol in the hope that it contains cells from the animal’s mouth.

The team also found and photographed several sets of tracks made by creatures. Expedition zoologist Richard Freeman confirmed that they matched no known creature in the area. The prints were six to seven inches long with a narrow heel and wider front. The big toe is well separated.

Hair samples were taken from a tree close to the tracks. A number of the hairs contain medullas that the team hopes will contain orang-pendek DNA. The samples will shortly be sent off to experts around the world for analysis.

If the samples turn out to be from a new species Freeman suggests the scientific name of Pongo martyri in honour of the English researcher Debbie Martyr who has done more than anyone else to look into this zoological mystery.

Footage from the expedition and from the Irish lakes are being submitted for inclusion in a major BBC documentary about the CFZ, which is being made by Minnow Films, an award winning British film production company, over the next eight months.

Pictures are available from the expedition, and more information will be released over the next few days. For pictures from Sumatra or Ireland, or to interview personnel from either expedition please telephone Jon or Corinna on 01237 4531413.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Goat-Man: This Weekend

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the reported Goat-Man sightings at Lake Worth, Texas. And, as a result I'm pleased to report, the Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge is getting into the spirit of things and holding a "Monster Bash" this coming Saturday - October 3.

It runs from 10Am to 2PM and promises to be a fun, informative event for all the family. I'll be there, getting pictures, reviewing the event for both this blog and elsewhere; so if you'll be there too, come over and say "Hi!"

Here's the link to the relevant pages of the FWNCR where you can find all about the event.

Bigfoot in Texas

On Saturday, I attended the annual conference of the Texas Bigfoot Research Conservancy at Tyler, Texas, and a fine time was had by all. I'm writing a full review of the event for a forthcoming issue of Fortean Times magazine. In the meantime, here's a review from the local newspaper that covers the Tyler area.

Certainly one of the highlights for me was getting to meet Bob Gimlin - that, alone, was worth the price of admission!

From The Anomalist

From today's Anomalist:

The Curious Case of the Snake with Foot Forgetomori. A snake with a foot is found in China. Snakes with limbs are not unheard of, since their ancestor did have limbs, but there's something about this particular claw that just doesn't looks right. Kentaro Mori resolves the mystery. He should tackle that Irish lake monster video, the story of which finally made the mainstream press with Mysterious shape that looks a loch like Nessie. Cryptozoologists are beginning to have doubts about it, however. Glen Vaudrey writes that one item in the video might be "a large water bird, which appears to be taking off."

The Killarney Video

Some of you will doubtless be aware that just recently CFZ Director Jon Downes; his wife, Corinna; and Max Blake - who is already on his way to becoming a major figure within the CFZ - traveled to Ireland, where they spent several days in the company of the legendary Tony "Doc" Shiels.

It was while the team was at the upper lake at Killarney, however, that something distinctly strange occurred...

Darklore IV

Darklore IV (edited and published by Greg Taylor of The Daily Grail) is now available, and has a number of crypto-chapters in its pages (including one from Richard Freeman on Japanese monsters; and one from Neil Arnold on the Chupacabras). You will also find a chapter from me on ESP in the animal kingdom.

Here's Greg himself to tell you more:

I'm very pleased to announce that the latest instalment of our Fortean anthology series, Darklore Volume 4, is now available for sale! Here's the links to purchase from Amazon:

Limited Edition Hardcover (333 copies): Amazon US or Amazon UK

Paperback: Amazon US or Amazon UK

Here's a sampling of the content in the latest release:

Greg Taylor looks back on the mythical context of the 'American Stonehenge', the Georgia Guidestones.

Robert Bauval surveys the sacred landscape of Ancient Egypt.

Blair MacKenzie Blake suggests a shocking new theory on the mystery of Rennes-le-Chateau.

Richard Freeman goes in search of Japanese monsters.

Nick Redfern reveals the government files investigating animal E.S.P.

Filip Coppens takes you on a tour of that most ancient of sites, Göbekli Tepe.

Neil Arnold traces the Chupacabras bloodline in 'The Goatsucker Family Tree'.

The Emperor digs deep into the history of the Flying Saucerers.

Robert Schoch wonders whether psi was used to incite a revolution in Romania.

Much more besides, with contributions from Mike Tymn, Nigel Watson, Greg Mcqueen, John Higgs, Theo Paijmans and John Reppion.

Sample articles from Volume 4 will be available from the Darklore website later in the week.


Orang Pendek Update

Richard Freeman and the CFZ team that traveled to Sumatra for two weeks in search of the Orang-Pendek are now back in Britain; and here's the text of a communication from Richard himself - to CFZ Director, Jon Downes - that was sent a couple of days ago:

"Hi Jon,

"We are just back from the jungle and have amazing news but don't release it till tomorrow when we will be out of Indonesia. Dave Archer and Sahar the guide saw orang-pendek!It was squatting in a tree around 100 feet from them. It was the size of an adult chimp and dark brown in colour. They could not see the face, hands or feet. Its head was shaped more like a gorilla's than a chimp's and it lacked the long mane of hair some witnesses describe. A darker strip was visible on the back. It had broad shoulders and the upper half of the body, including the head, was 40 inches (we measured afterwards). The coat was thick like a mountain gorilla's.

"We have hair samples and rattan that the orang-pendek was chewing on. Sahar saw it jump down and walk away on two legs. Dave missed a photo opportunity when he tried to get a better vantage point.We found and photographed very clear footprints in a different area but could not cast them as we couldn't get hold of any plaster of Paris. We collected many hairs from this area.

"Dampness screwed the moving camera's battery. It was virtually dead within 48 hours of us reaching Gunung Tuju. We took lots of photos. Dave's moving camera was drained by humidity too. We have some film but not a vast amount. We filmed a big cat sequence.

"Loads of adventures happened including almost sinking in flooded canoes, thinking we had OP cornered up a tree and clothes being soaked in raw sewage!The rattan will probably have OP DNA on it like a mouth swab. These are the best results from any expedition ever.

"Cheers, Rich."

Much more will be coming soon, so stay tuned!

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Texas Bigfoot

Tomorrow, I'll be attending the annual conference of the Texas Bigfoot Research Conservancy - which is being held in Tyler, Texas, and which I'll be reviewing for a future issue of Fortean Times magazine. The TBRC gigs are always excellent events and well worth checking out. There's a cool range of speakers, and a good diversity of topics under discussion, too. If you're gonna be there, say hello!

Here's all the info you'll need on the conference, times, location, and speaker-list.

A British Bigfoot Report?

Over at my Man-Beast U.K. blog you can find a new post from me on what may relate to the sighting of a British Bigfoot-style creature...

Orang-Pendek News

This just in at The Anomalist: the very latest news on the current quest to find the Orang-Pendek of Sumatra:

Breaking News: Orang Pendek Sighted Cryptomundo. Adam Davies, now returning from his latest Sumatra expedition, writes that two expedition members have sighted the Orang-Pendek. It was described as bipedal and "almost chimpanzee-like." Tracks were found, as well as hair samples and some rattan which it was eating.

Stay tuned, and doubtless we'll soon hear more over at the CFZ blog, too.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Jon & Corinna: Coming to the USA

Good friends CFZ Director Jon Downes and his wife, Corinna, will be making a visit to Texas next year - and all thanks to Naomi and Richie West, as the great hairy one himself explains:

"We can exclusively announce that due to the remarkable generosity of Richie and Naomi West, Corinna and I will be flying to Texas for a fortnight in mid March to carry on the Texas blue dog investigations at first hand.The trip is being funded by Richie and Naomi who are being so ridiculously generous that words fail me, and I will never be rude to Richie, or tease Naomi again. No. Sadly, even in the face of such kindness I will not make promises that I cannot possibly keep.Thank you, my dears, from the bottom of our hearts."

Scary Cryptids

Micah Hanks highlights those cryptids you may not wish to cross paths with!


There has been a run on alleged lake-monster reports this week, as The Anomalist demonstrates:

Mythical Beast Is ‘Spotted’ In Windermere Evening Mail. A TV cameraman has shot footage that some people believe appears to show a creature causing ripples in the surface of Lake Windermer in the Lake District. Dubbed “Bownessie,” the creature has been part of the folklore around the lake since 1900. Says a local councillor, "The people that have seen it believe genuinely they have seen something, even if there is no real proof yet."

Photo of Cameron Lake Monster? Cryptomundo. The British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club have returned from their weekend exploration of Cameron Lake in British Columbia with little to show for their efforts other than a ping near Angel Rock: "Something just went ‘ping’ on the alarm on the fish finder and we saw this absolutely massive object in the midst of various fish." Could it be Cadborosaurus? That cryptid was adopted as an unofficial tourism mascot in the Victoria area, and the club director feels it is real because fishermen found one inside the belly of a sperm whale in 1937 and sent it to the Royal B.C. Museum for identification. The post features a photograph taken by Bridget Horvath in August of 2007, which is said to be of the Cameron Lake cryptid. But is it only "windrows," a wake that’s created by the wind? Elsewhere on Cryptomundo, “Sea Serpent” of Bahia Discovered and Gulf of Mexico Gives Up Giant Squid.

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Phantom Baboon

Over at my Man-Beast UK blog, you can find a post on the Phantom Baboon of Basingstoke, England...

Kithra Comments

The always-sensible Kithra has the following to say about that certain weird-looking beast that has been in the news lately:

"A few days ago reports began to surface from Panama of what some people are calling another Montauk Monster. Naturally, this story has now gone viral on the Internet, and I was surprised to read about it in one of the UK’s reputable newspapers.

"Pictures show the hairless body and repellent features of “something” that is very similar to the creature seen on the New York coast last year. The story concerning this new find relates how four teenagers, aged between 14 and 16, saw the animal crawling from a cave north of Panama City.

"They were so frightened by what they saw that they killed it with sticks and stones, and then threw its body into a pool of water. Sometime later they returned and took photographs of the carcass that were then posted on the web.

"Over at the Cryptomundo website Loren Coleman has also written about this discovery, and put up some pictures, under the heading of: “The Blue Hill Horror.” This particular post by Loren has so far produced 56 Responses.

"Another very good article about it is from Micah Hanks at his Gralien Report website, entitled: “Strange “Blue Hill Creature” Photographed in Panama (or not).” His piece also references other websites that contain more information and are well worth checking out.

"It would seem that most Cryptozoologists now believe that the creature in this story is nothing but a dead Giant Tree Sloth. And I agree with them."

There's Something in the Water...

Strange things have been afoot while Jon and Corinna Downes have been in Wales, visiting Tony Shiels...

For all the details, see the following links:

1. Link One;

2. Link Two;

3. Link Three;

4. Link Four.

From The Anomalist...

From The Anomalist:

Destination Truth Trips Over Aluxob Cryptomundo. Dan Gannon, who has studied reports of Proto-Pygmies for several years and assisted the program “Destination Truth” with their recent Alux shoot, critiques the recently screened episode. Gannon raises seven objections, on of which is: " Despite the fact that the Aluxob have been extensively and consistently documented and described, in Spanish-Mexican culture for more than 500 years, the program seriously corrupted the description, falsely portraying Aluxob as hairy all over their bodies, and with big fangs, and “carnivorous teeth,” which is not accurate, at all." Also on Cryptomundo, a Call To Muralists: CZ Museum Needs You and Loren Coleman hopes to See Ya In Tyler & Indiana.

Encounters with Werewolves From the Shadows. Legends of werewolves are taken seriously by those who have reportedly seen the mythical beasts. Whether crossing roads in dark woods or chasing frightened teens through a suburban golf course, any of these witnesses will tell you they wouldn't believe the stories they tell if they hadn't seen it themselves. Throughout the years, those who witness the man-beast describe it as over six feet tall, muscular, bi-pedal and generally, very unfriendly. Yet, not all legends reside in remote places. One witness reports that his sighting wasn't "out in the woods or at a secluded cabin, but in Tempe, Arizona.” Elsewhere, no physical evidence has been found by officials of the State of New Hampshire confirming the existence of the state's first cougar in 140 years, but NH Takes Sightings Seriously.

The Ape-Man of Sumatra

Over at my regular Lair of the Beasts column at Mania.com you can find a new article from me on the CFZ's expedition to Sumatra in search of the Orang-Pendek...

Friday, September 18, 2009

Neil Arnold on Big Cats

British cryptozoologist Neil Arnold is profiled in a new newspaper article on Britain's out-of-place cats...

Blue Hill Horrors

From today's Anomalist:

The Blue Hill Horror Cryptomundo. Having to rely on a Panamanian newspaper report, Loren Coleman presents puzzling images and supposed scenario for the detection and subsequent death of a creature that has remained unidentified thus far. What is this creature reportedly killed by frightened teens in the Blue Hill region of Panama? Kentaro Mori has more on the Blue Hill Horror in The Panamanian Monster That Almost Were.


Over at my "Reviews of the Mysterious Kind" blog, you can find two new book-reviews that may be of interest.

They aren't strictly cryptozoological, but they may appeal, since both deal with strange creatures.

The first is review on a new edition of Elliott O'Donnell's classic 1913 book, Animal Ghosts (now titled Ghostly Pets, Phantom Felines and Haunted Hounds); and the second is a review of Brad Steiger's new book, Real Vampires.

I contributed a section to the latter book - on the Chupacabras - and you will also find within the pages of Brad's book a whole section on werewolves, which makes for excellent reading!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Chupacabra, Hairless Dogs, Interview

While speaking at the 2009 Paranormal Symposium in Angel Fire, New Mexico last weekend (on the subject of my cryptozoological investigations), I was interviewed by The Santa Fe Reporter that wanted to get my views on the so-called "Texas Chupacabras."

Well, of course, the Texas beasts are merely hairless and canine! They are most definitely not the same thing that is - and has for years been - running around the wilds of Puerto Rico; as I was careful to point out.

Anyway, the interview was video-based, and here it is:

And for more information on the interview and the Texas beasts, click right here.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Neil Arnold's Latest

Neil Arnold has two new, interesting posts that you'll find interesting:

1. Mermaid Mysteries;

2. Beasts of London.

Orang Alert

As some of you may know, a team (including Richard Freeman) has recently set off in search of the Orang Pendeks of Sumatra.

This will be Rich's third expedition in search of the mysterious creatures, and hopefully some interesting data and witness testimony will surface. And, who knows, maybe even an Orang Pendek or several will put in an appearance!

Well, keeping that in mind, the CFZ has set up a new blog devoted to the expedition where you can learn all the latest news as it breaks.

Here's the link to the blog. And, I'll also keep you updated here, too of any developments.

Coast to Coast AM Tonight

For those who may be interested, I’ll be on Coast to Coast AM tonight, where I’ll be speaking about my new book: Science Fiction Secrets: From Government Files and the Paranormal.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Coming Soon...

The Blue Dog of Elmendorf...

Jon Downes Hits The Road

Jon Downes heads for Ireland, and a meet with a legendary character from the fields of cryptozoology and Forteana...

More Monsters

And a few more stories from the last few days:

1. Micah Hanks on a leggy snake...

2. Bigfoot in Texas...

3. Flying thing or windshield chip...?

Catching Up!

Well, after nearly a week of chasing mysterious beasts in the woods of Wisconsin, and then lecturing in Angel Fire, New Mexico over the weekend on such creatures as the Chupacabra, Bigfoot, lake-monsters, werewolves and much more, I finally made it home - the only hitch being a flat car-battery when I got back to DFW Airport; which wasn't much fun at midnight last night!!

Anyway, enough of that. Here's a few things that you may have missed over the last few days:

1. From The Anomalist:
Cryptoelephants Cryptomundo. Loren Coleman reviews the new book, Guide Des Animaux Caches, by the French author Philippe Coudray who theorizes in his writing that an unfossilized tusk discovered in Ethiopia in 1904 may indicate some prehistoric elephant ancestors could still be roaming the most out-of-the-way areas of the Dark Continent. Coleman reviews more of Coudray's depictions of cryptids in Guides Des Animaux Caches. With many images in both reviews. Elsewhere, reports of a curious arrangement between the British Natural History museum and a British betting agency make news in Loch Ness Monster Curious Museum Bookie Arrangement. Meanwhile, another cryptid is featured in the report Mongolian Death Worm Hunters Return With Film but no Creature.

2. Also from The Anomalist:
Full Screen of KY Bigfoot/Crow Blogsquatcher. A recent trailcam picture believed to show something that resembled a Bigfoot in a Kentucky man's garden has been analyzed. Here are some comparison photos that show what really visited the Kentucky garden. Meanwhile, a search for cryptids is about to get underway in Sumatra, and there's a video interview with one ot the mission's key members in Interview with Richard Freeman on the Eve of the Expedition.

3. Yep, another from The Anomalist:
Where the BHMs (Big Hairy Monsters) Are Rutland Herald. Perhaps it's because Vermont is one of the oldest states in the US, but whatever the reason, there's no doubting the state has a unique collection of monster sightings. Here Daniel Barlow reviews Joseph Citro's The Vermont Monster Guide. Key quote: "What about the bats with human faces sighted outside Rutland? How about the pet-eating Pigman of Northfield? Or the cats with freakiishly long legs that roam the dumpsters in Burlington?" With images and a long listing of monsters to be found in Citro's new book.

Cryptozoo Museum Opens In Downtown Portland Cryptomundo. It has taken six years, but as of November 1, 2009, the International Cryptozoology Museum will open to the public in a permanent space in downtown Portland, Maine. The museum will be sharing the space with Green Hand Books, owned by Michelle Souliere, an anomalist and editor of the Strange Maine Newsletter. Loren Coleman provides details of what the museum will exhibit and explains the “Fayette coincidence” of its location.

Sunday, September 6, 2009


I'll be offline from now and until Tuesday 15 September.

From tomorrow - and for 4 days - I'll be deep in the woods of Wisconsin, and on the trail of a certain diabolical cryptid.

Then, right after that I'll be on my way to Angel Fire, New Mexico, where I'll be speaking at the 2009 Paranormal Symposium.

The subject of my lecture: my various investigations of - and expeditions to seek out - the Chupacabras of Puerto Rico; Bigfoot in the thick woods of East Texas; werewolves in both the UK and the US; and much more.

If you can get along, say hello! It promises to be a cool weekend!

From The Anomalist

The Anomalist highlights what's afoot in cryptozoology on the Labor Day Weekend:

The Official Gralien Report Top Ten Scariest Monsters The Gralien Report. Micah Hanks, inspired by the recent reader-selected Haunted America Tours Top Ten Cryptids list, puts together his own list, focusing on the lesser-known monsters that haven't garnered the "love" the Haunted America Tours monsters have collected. Only one "conventional" monster makes Hanks' list. As for the others, how many do you recognize? Meanwhile, a monster from the Indian sub-continent, Tibet and Southeast Asia gets mention in Dale Drinnon: The Buru; and recent commentary by Michel Meurger draws a response in Richard Freeman: Multi Heads Don't Make a Myth.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

In Print: Nessie

Check out my review of a new, non-fiction book on the Loch Ness Monster - at my Lair of the Beasts column at Mania.com.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Top 10 Monsters

Britain's Daily Telegraph newspaper highlights 10 must-see monsters...

Lions in Britain

Merrily Harpur has an interesting new article online at the Fortean Times website. The subject-matter: apparent sightings of lions in Britain! Here's the link; however, you may have to sign-up with the website to read the article.

Nessie in Print

So, what's all this about? You'll find out in a few days...!

Werewolves - A Field Guide

On its way to me right now is a review-copy of Dr. Bob Curran's new book: Werewolves - A Field Guide to Shapeshifters, Lycanthropes, and Man-Beasts.

I'll be reviewing the book right here as soon as I have read it. In the meantime, however - and specifically thanks to Lori at Warwick Associates, and the good people at Career Press and New Page Books - here's an excellent new article from the author himself on the subject of those diabolical creatures of the night...

Werewolves -
Everything You Need to Know…

By Dr. Bob Curran

Since earliest times, legends of were-creatures – humans who could alternate between their own and animal shape – have formed a significant part of our folklore and mythology. One of the best known of such beings is, arguably, the werewolf. Indeed, it has appeared in medieval legends, in fairy tales and latterly in books and films. It is arguably the wolf which has dominated the stories and perceptions of the werefolk.

The wolf has been Mankind’s oldest adversary. It was with wolves that our early ancestors competed for food and it was against the rivalry of the wolf that they hunted. Arguably, Man has always feared the creature and yet he has always admired its hunting prowess, strength and swiftness. They also may have envied its hunting prowess and the ease with which it caught its prey, much more skilfully perhaps than the shambling hominids who were our forebears.

In a world were good hunting was essential for survival of both the individual and the community, they wished they could be like it. And so the desire probably took on a form of reality. Our ancestors began to look for ways in which they could supernaturally be the animal (and not just wolves, but other animals they admire – the bull, the horse etc.) and so acquire these skills. At first, it may have been no more than pretending to be these creatures – dressing in skins, adopting certain postures – but in a world which was filled with spirits and supernatural forces, an element of possession by the animal spirit soon became paramount.

Shamans and perhaps hunters themselves were "taken over" by the wolf spirit and began to exhibit lupine behaviour and possibly perceived lupine attributes. The idea of the man-wolf had already taken root in the developing human mind.

That idea persisted down the ages but as civilisations began to consolidate and develop it became less to do with hunting and more to do with prowess – physical, sexual – and ferocity. It appeared as the attribute of a warrior in battle, a man who created terror amongst his enemies. The idea of the wolf-warrior appears in a number of ancient cultures, particularly Viking, were certain warriors donned both wolf and bear skins in order to emphasise their fierceness and skill in warfare. These were the berserkers who, through the medium of their animal pelt garments seemed to acquire certain strengths and skills which seemed to make them invulnerable in any conflict. Ancient heroes amongst other races – for example the Celts – had similar attributes which might be attributed to their contact with animals such as wolves.

Allied to this was a fascination with travellers’ tails. Although travel was perhaps more frequent than we suspect in these early times, it was only certain people who in fact, journeyed any distance. They returned with wonderful tales of countries which they had seen and explored and of the wonderful beings that they had seen there. These stories, tall as they were, were readily accepted as fact in places like Christian Europe and it was readily believed that astonishing races lived in other lands – men who looked curious and who behaved in a curious fashion. Amongst these descriptions was that of a dog-headed race of men who lived somewhere in the East – some of whom were primitive and others who were relatively advanced. Stories of the "dog-heads" readily fell into the perceptions of the man-wolf in popular imagination and it was thought that if these people mated amongst human kind they might produce offspring who could alternate shape at will.

There was one other element in the cultural and imaginative mix concerning werewolves– cannibalism. It has been suggested that cannibalism was probably much more widespread in earlier societies than we care to acknowledge, particularly in remote areas of the developing world. In remote areas during harsh seasons, poverty-stricken individuals may well have resorted to eating each other in order to survive. From time to time tales of cannibals surfaced into mainstream folklore – the tale of Sawney Bean, "the Man-Eater of Midlothian" in Scotland for instance during the 14th or 15th centuries (it is not clear however, that Bean existed in the way that the legends say that he did). The idea of individuals using their fellow humans for food and even hunting them down, held overtones of the wild wolves of the forest and, as some of these individuals lived in remote areas, the connection seemed all the more obvious. It was not hard then to imagine that the human predators transformed themselves into their animal counterparts, perhaps by diabolical means.

As Christianity began to assert itself in the West, the idea of the man-wolf took on a slightly different aspect. Now this creature was the agent of the Devil and it was the Enemy of All Mankind who gave him or her their powers. The victim of the werewolf then became the Godly or the innocent – the old woman living alone or the small child. These themes were central to many of the werewolf trials, particularly in France in the 16th century – Giles Garnier, the Hermit of Dole, the Werewolves of Poligny, Jacques Roulet. Some of these alleged occurrences were brought about by the Devil, others were accidental in which the moon (a pagan symbol) played a part.

And so it has continued down to the present – the idea of the man-wolf (a figure from many cultures) appearing in literature and film. Although it has perhaps never enjoyed as much fame as the vampire or Frankenstein, the prowling beast still lurks somewhere in the depths of the human psyche, a potent reminder perhaps that we are not as cultured or civilised as we often profess to be.

Dr. Bob Curran is the author of the new book Werewolves- A Field Guide to Shapeshifters, Lycanthropes, and Man-Beasts released in September, 2009 by New Page Books (ISBN 978-1-60163-089-6).

The Mass Mystery Weekend

For those of you who may want to attend, I'll be speaking at the annual Monster Mash at the Boston-based "Mass Mystery Weekend" on the night of Saturday, October 17. The subject of my lecture: my various trips to Puerto Rico in search of the Chupacabras.

I'll be showing lots of never-before-seen imagery of witnesses, locations and more, and discussing the highlights of my expeditions.

On the same evening, Loren Coleman will be speaking on the Abominable Snowman and Tom Slick; so a monstrous time should be had by all!

Also: for those into UFOs, on the previous night I'll be lecturing on the crashed UFO controversy at the UFO Show - which is the first-part of the weekend-long Monster Mash (and at which good friend Peter Robbins will also be speaking - on the Rendlesham Forest UFO event of December 1980).

Hope to see you there!

Seeking the Orang-Pendek

This just in from good friend Richard Freeman at the CFZ in England:

"After two previous expeditions to the Indonesian island of Sumatra on the track of the upright walking ape know as orang-pendek (short man) the CFZ will be returning for a third expedition beginning on September the 13th.

"Adam Davis, Dr Chris Clark, Dave Archer and myself will be spending two weeks in the jungle in search of the orang-pendek. Past expeditions have concentrated on Gunung Tuju (the lake of seven peaks) in Kerinchi National Park. This time the better part of the expedition will be spent with the Kubu people in the lowland jungles. Back in 2004 Chris and I spent a day with these people and Nylam their chief.

"The Kubu are the original inhabitants of Sumatra. The modern Indonesians arrived relatively recently from Malaya. They are far taller and more slender than the average Sumatran. They have oriental features but the men have curly hair almost like Africans. Until recently the Kubu live totally wild in the jungle. Now they have houses but still spend months on end in the deep rain forest.

"Nylam told us of his own encounter with an orang-pendek a few years back. He and his warriors had also seen ten meter long serpents that they described as having horns like an ox!We will be working with the Kubu to search for orang-pendek and the horned serpents (the Kubu call them Nagas).

"Apparently there have been a number of sightings of the short man in the area recently. We intend to make our HQ in the ‘garden’, a semi cultivated are that abuts the true jungle. We hope to record some of their culture and folklore as next to nothing has been written on Kubu beliefs. Towards the end of the trip we will return to Gunung Tuju were the creature has also been seen recently.

"They say threes the charm and third time lucky so keep your fingers crossed!"

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

A Fortean Anniversary

Good friend Micah Hanks has a new post on the so-called "Texas Chupacabras" (or, hairless canids) that makes for interesting reading. As Micah says:

"I found this interesting bit of synchronicity today: reports coming out of Texas are describing what is being dubbed a 'Chupacabra', now in the possession of a San Antonio area Taxidermist named Jerry Ayers. 'It got into his cousin’s barn and they thought maybe it was a rodent tearing stuff up, and they no idea since they’ve never seen it,' said Ayers. 'He got out some poison and this is what they got the next day.' Kold News 13 reported on the story earlier today (September 1st)…

"…which marks the anniversary of another Chupacabra discovery in nearby Cuerto, Texas, dating back to 2007. Fox News reported on the find in an article titled 'Texas Woman Claims to Have Found Mythical ‘Chupacabra' on the same date two years ago. Although both critters are likely coyotes or foxes suffering from mange, it is strange synchronicity nonetheless that the two reports would both appear at the same time of year, right down to the exact date. Does this indicate any sort of trend about weather, habitat, feeding habits, etc that might indicate what causes these creatures to appear at specific times? Or, in the likely case that it is a known animal suffering from effects of a skin condition, does this provide insight into a cause for the ailment?"

Micah continues right here...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Hairy Monsters

When the hunter becomes the hunted...werewolf style...

Ewe Must Be Joking!

You know I like to highlight the sightings of the many and varied weird beasts seen in the vicinity of England's Cannock Chase woods, but this new story - from a locale on the fringes of the Chase - takes the "weird animal" angle to whole new levels!!!

Brad Steiger's Real Vampires

Legendary author Brad Steiger has a new book out right now titled Real Vampires, Night Stalkers and Creatures from the Darkside.

My copy arrived in the mail today; and a full-length review will appear right here just as soon as I have digested its blood-soaked pages (okay, I have to confess they aren't really blood-soaked; I just want to try and build up the atmosphere!).

When Brad was in the planning stages of the book, he asked me if I would be interested in submitting some material for the book.

Well, as someone who has been a big fan of Brad's work since my early teens, my answer was, of course: "Yes!"

And, so, that's precisely what I did.

In my 6-page article/contribution, titled Welcome to Blood Island, I focused my attention on my various expeditions to the island of Puerto Rico, in search of the island's most legendary blood-sucker: the diabolical and infamous Chupacabras.

The illustrated article details some of the highlights of my trips to Puerto Rico; a wealth of startling eye-witness testimony relative to the beast and its violent attacks; and much more.

As my paper also reveals, not all vampires look like Bela Lugosi, Christopher Lee, or the many and varied other bygone vampires of yesteryear. Nor do they all resemble the pale-skinned and black-garbed Marilyn Manson-style creatures of the night, with which today's world of Hollywood is seemingly so obsessed.

No: some of them are even more horrific - and top of the list (in my view, at least) is that glowing eyed, razor-clawed, blood-drinking predator, the Chupacabras.

For anyone and everyone interested in vampires of all manner, description and style, Brad's new book is not to be missed!

More on the Man-Monkey

Over at my Man-Beast UK blog, you can find a new posting on my research into that most notorious of all British-Bigfoot-type entities: the Man-Monkey of Ranton.

Mysterious Roars

Neil Arnold tells the strange tale of the "Disembodied Roar..."

Monsters of the Anomalist Style

From The Anomalist:

Mystery Photo: A Thunderbird? Cryptomundo. When we received a remarkable photograph of a possible Thunderbird on Friday, we passed it on to Loren Coleman to investigate. There is no doubt that the image is real; it is not a hoax. But the question is: is it really a Thunderbird or something else?

Does a Prehistoric Monster Haunt the Hawkesbury River? Daily Telegraph. Australian cryptozoologist Rex Gilroy says he recently saw a giant 12 meter, long necked creature surface in Sydney's Hawkesbury River. He believes it is a plesiosaur from the Jurassic period. Gilroy found accounts of the creature dating back to pre-colonial times, with stories told of children being attacked by the "moolyewonk."

Yeti Stalks Bikini-Clad Student Cryptomundo. A video of a teenage girl walking in a stream in the Tatra Mountains of Poland reveals what some say is a Yeti in the undergrowth on the other side of the riverbank. Yeti hunters have been flocking to the area after reported sightings and Polish Yeti Footage emerged last week.

Ape Men - Soviet Style

My new book Science Fiction Secrets: From Government Files and the Paranormal, is now available.

If you're in the US, you can buy the book at Amazon right here;

if you're in the UK here's the relevant connection;

and if you're in Canada, here's the link you'll need.

Much of the book is focused upon the UFO controversy; however, as you'll see from the publisher's (Anomalist Books) blurb below, it does contain a chapter on one particular issue of truly cryptozoological proportions: namely, that relating to the strange story of Josef Stalin's ape-men...


Mix two parts science fiction with one part high-level government secrecy. Add a liberal helping of the paranormal.

Then let Nick Redfern heat and serve.

The result is far, far stranger than anything that you could ever begin to imagine.

SCIENCE FICTION SECRETS presents some mind-bending answers to a number of highly intriguing and thought-provoking questions, including:

  • Did the U.S. Government secretly assist Steven Spielberg in the production of his groundbreaking science fiction movies Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T.: The Extra Terrestrial?
  • Why were special agents of the FBI so deeply interested in the life, career, and activities of science fiction author Philip K. Dick (of Blade Runner fame)?
  • How did The X-Files spin-off series The Lone Gunmen anticipate months in advance the terrible tragedy of 9-11?
  • Why was the top brass of the U.S. Air Force so secretly interested in, and concerned by, the UFO-related tales of a relatively anonymous 1950s science fiction movie-maker who died in poverty in the early 1980s?
  • Did a nightmarish scenario presented in one of H.G. Wells' novels prompt Soviet Premier Josef Stalin to clandestinely embark upon a secret and diabolical experiment designed to create a super race of monstrous, half-human half-ape soldiers?
  • Has the military managed to successfully perfect human teleportation of the type that was most graphically and famously shown in Star Trek and The Fly?


Well, after several more days in good old England, where I was speaking at the Weird 09 conference (on the history of the Men in Black), I'm once again home (for a while, at least!). And it's time, of course, to update you on what's afoot.

Over the course of today, I'll be posting a few things that will catch up on what's afoot in cryptozoology.