Jon Downes has finally heard from Richard Freeman regarding the latest news from the India expedition. Over to Jon...
I received an email from Richard Freeman this morning. The absence of earlier news from them is simple - "Hi Jon, Sorry for the the delay, this is the first working computer I have come across since I got to India".
You may remember that Chris Clark was unwell on the flight over, causing some concern here at base camp. Richard continues: "Chris has had some chest pains whilst climbing up hills. He's going for a check-up today". It goes without saying that he is in our thoughts and prayers.
As always seems to be the case, the team go in search of one unknown animal and find reports of several others:
"We have interviewed many witnesses including a shaman. As well as the mande burung we have uncovered reports of a huge (15-18m) crested serpent called the sankuni".
The sankuni seems very similar if not identical to the naga which Richard hunted in Thailand ten years ago: "It is associated with rainfall and is blamed for landslides. One was supposedly shot in 1940 in a lake near the border with Bangaladesh. It had killed a number of people so a group of armed men hunted it. The shaman reported being chased by a huge, upright walking man-like beast and seeing a sankuni slithering out of a river cave".
Back to the mande burung, "Another man saw a severed, preserved hand in a village market" and they also "found what may be the femur of a bipedal animal in a cave in Seju".
And there is other news as well: "We may have also found evidence of a gigantic muntjac even bigger than the giant muntjac, and a possible new sub-species or population of the red panda".
And finally "We put up camera traps and will be interviewing recent witnesses soon".
It looks like a momentous expedition so far. Well done lads (and get well soon Chris).
Note from Nick: Yep, let's all wish Chris a good, speedy recovery.