Monday, December 31, 2007

Monster Review

My Memoirs of a Monster Hunter book gets the thumbs-up at My Strange Blog.

Giganto News

Gigantopithecus, the largest ape ever known to have existed, is one of the candidates that has been offered to explain the mystery of the Yeti, Bigfoot and a myriad of other giant, hairy man-beasts. Here's the latest on the creature.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

A Winged Mystery

Yet another report to add to the already-bulging case file on claimed encounters with still-surviving pterosaurs.

British Werewolves Online

Fate magazine has just posted a PDF version of one of its issues online that includes an article from me on British werewolf reports. The issue can be found here.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Monster-Hunting on Binnall of America

A couple of weeks ago, Tim Binnall interviewed me for his highly successful Binnall of America on the subject of my most recent book, Memoirs of a Monster Hunter. Here's the link. Note that the show should be available online from Sunday onwards.

"Backyard Phenomena" Updates

Check out Backyard Phenomena, the new blog of Lisa Shiel, author of the book Backyard Bigfoot, for the latest updates on the high-strangeness and trickster-style events in Lisa's life:
Update One;
Update Two.

Bigfoot In the News Again

Bigfoot is in the news again, as these four stories amply demonstrate:
Story One (man meets Bigfoot and it wasn't friendly...);
Story Two (Bigfoot and the people who see the beast...);
Story Three (Stinky Bigfoot...);
Story Four (I Spy Bigfoot...).

"Memoirs of a Monster Hunter" Lecture

For those of you within driving distance of Denton, Texas, I'll be lecturing on my book Memoirs of a Monster Hunter for the Denton Area Paranormal Society (DAPS) on the night of 16 January. Click on this link and go to "Meetings and Events" for details of time, location, etc. The lecture is also open to the public.

The Gable Film - The Latest

Some of you will doubtless be aware of the controversy surrounding the so-called "Gable Film" - a seemingly old piece of film-footage that appears to show a strange, shape-shifting beast that perhaps falls into the category of "Dogman" or "werewolf."
Many have suggested the film is nothing but a hoax.
However, as this latest development in the saga shows, the controversy is still very much alive.
If you aren't aware of the film and its history, the link above also provides the background to the film.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

A Sheepish Pig

A monster, it's not. But an animal story of strange proportions, it most definitely is.

Britain's Black Dogs

Dark tales of the ghostly black dogs - or hell-hounds - of old England can be found in abundance in many old towns and villages all across the nation. And now they're in the news again.

So, what are the black dogs? In his definitive book Explore Phantom Black Dogs, English author and researcher Bob Trubshaw wrote: “The folklore of phantom black dogs is known throughout the British Isles. From the Black Shuck of East Anglia to the Mauthe Dhoog of the Isle of Man there are tales of huge spectral hounds ‘darker than the night sky’ with eyes ‘glowing red as burning coals.’ The phantom black dog of British and Irish folklore, which often forewarns of death, is part of a worldwide belief that dogs are sensitive to spirits and the approach of death, and keep watch over the dead and dying. North European and Scandinavian myths dating back to the Iron Age depict dogs as corpse eaters and the guardians of the roads to hell. Medieval folklore includes a variety of ‘Devil dogs’ and spectral hounds.”

You can also find more on the mystery black dogs in this recent article I wrote for Fate magazine.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Benefits of the Mothman

The Daily Press reveals how the West Virginia town of Point Pleasant has benefited from its most famous Fortean inhabitant: Mothman.

Spare A Thought...

Spare a thought for Jon and Corinna Downes, at the CFZ HQ in England, who received some tragic news over the holiday period. Our thoughts are with them.

The LA Times on Bigfoot

The Los Angeles Times profiles Bigfoot hunter (and publisher of Bigfoot Times) Daniel Perez. Also: see this UPI post.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

A very merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and good 2008 to all of you that visit the blog. I'm signing off now until Wednesday.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Nessie News

As a result of the forthcoming film, The Water Horse, the media continues to latch onto the puzzle and mystery of the Loch Ness Monster, with this story and this one.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Monsters of Ireland

For anyone and everyone interested in learning about the mysterious animals of Ireland, this is a very cool and informative site. Big cats, lake-monsters and tales rich in folklore and history can be found in abundance. A great site.

Bigfoot Art

Frame 352 on Bigfoot artwork...

Tales of the Trickster

Lisa Shiel's stories of the Trickster element of cryptozoology and Forteana make for intriguing reading. Here's the first post; and here's the latest.

Animals & Men

A couple of days ago I received in the mail the new issue of Animals & Men: The Journal of the Center for Fortean Zoology.
I always look forward to receiving a new A&M, as it's a publication that is guaranteed to both entertain and inform anyone and everyone with an interest in cryptozoology, Forteana and all-things-weird.
And the new issue most certainly doesn't disappoint. You will find in its pages a wealth of stories on newly discovered creatures; the latest news on sightings of mysterious Big Cats in the UK; an in-depth report (including numerous photos) on the CFZ's recent expedition to Guyana in search of a wealth of strange beasts; a fascinating article by Neil Arnold titled The Bennington Triangle that details the unknown animals in one particular part of Vermont; a review of the CFZ's 2007 Weird Weekend gig; and details of a previously-unreported sighting of the British equivalent of Mothman - namely, the Owlman.
But there's something else, too.
As much as the Internet has revolutionized our lives for the better, as well as giving us the ability to access masses of information online at the touch of a button, I still think there is something exciting about receiving an in-print magazine via the postman, and as in the days of yore.
And when - as is the case with Animals & Men - it has been put together by a dedicated team (Jon, Corinna, Mark, Richard, Graham and Ollie) that often by the midnight-oil tirelessly edits the mag, does the artwork and design, prints it, and ensures that copies of the glossy, color-covered 60-page magazine are mailed to hundreds of like-minded souls across the world, it creates an image of admirable dedication to the task in-hand.
It also - for me, at least - is a firm indication that passion, vitality and boundless enthusiasm are all still alive and kicking in the world of cryptozoology.
Long may Jon and the team continue to publish Animals & Men.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Blogsquatcher on Bigfoot and Infrasound

Check out this multi-part report from the Blogsquatcher on Bigfoot, infrasound and high-strangeness (the link is to part one, and the subsequent parts can all be found at the blog). There's some good, intriguing data here.

Jon Downes On This Year And Next

Jon Downes rounds-up the year with a look back at what the CFZ has been doing in 2007, and what - in terms of books, conferences and expeditions - 2008 will bring.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

The Werewolves of Texas

The new issue of TAPS Paramagazine includes an article from me on encounters with, and sightings of, werewolf-style beasts in the state of Texas. If you're interested in sightings, both old and new, of lycanthropes, giant wolves and more of a related nature in the Lone Star State, check it out. The "Converse Werewolf;" the "Wolfman of Paradise;" the "Devil's River Wolf-Girl;" and the "Beast of Waco" all feature prominently.

Shiel and the Trickster

This looks to be interesting: Lisa Shiel, author of the book Backyard Bigfoot, is planning a series of posts at her blog on the "Trickster" element of those strange things we seek.

Frame 352 on Bigfoot Skeptics

Over at Frame 352, Regan Lee delves into the world of Bigfoot skeptics.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Monday, December 17, 2007

Naish on Nessie Imagery

Darren Naish delves into the controversial issue of photographic evidence alleging to show evidence of the Loch Ness Monster.

Bigfoot Hunters in the News

Sasquatch-seekers make the news...

Friday, December 14, 2007

Holy Armadillos!

I've seen a few dead armadillos on the roads of Texas since moving here in 2001; however, this is one armadillo-like beast I would not want to collide with on the road at 70MPH. Doubtless, I - rather than it - would end up as road-kill!

Bigfoot Pranks: US and UK Parallels

This new story from the US, of a Bigfoot prank that nearly ended in tragedy, is eerily reminiscent (in some ways, at least) of this incident from the Cannock Chase woods of England in early 2006.

Mystery Predator...

A new story worth keeping an eye on...

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Richard Freeman: An Exclusive Interview on the Beasts of Guyana

A couple of days ago, I interviewed the Center for Fortean Zoology's Richard Freeman about their recent CAPCOM-sponsored expedition to Guyana in search of a whole range of strange, diabolical and vicious beasts. As you'll see, Rich (the Zoological Director of the CFZ, and who can be seen in this photo, hanging out with a pal) had much to say about the trip and the new discoveries, tales and witnesses that the team unearthed.

Nick Redfern: NR

Richard Freeman: RF

NR: So what was it like out there, Rich, coming from blustery, cold England?

RF: In terms of the heat, it was the most difficult expedition I’ve ever been on. The temperature was well over 100 degrees. And as we were mainly in the Savannah, there was no shade at all. I actually got sunstroke once and passed out. It's difficult to describe how hot it really was; but at one point I couldn't take it any more and I waded into a swamp full of mosquitoes and hid under a tree, just to get out the heat and sun. But in terms of what we uncovered, it was worth the heat-stroke, the broken thumbs and infected feet that some of us got!

NR: So, what sorts of evidence and accounts did you uncover?

RF: Well, we had gone out there with the intention of looking for several different, specific creatures that we were told lived in the Savannah and the mountains of Guyana. And we were lucky enough to uncover information on all of them - and other stories on different creatures we didn't even know about. We'd heard in advance about giant snakes, giant ground sloths and a couple of other things. But we were surprised and pleased to get much more too.

RF: One of the most interesting people we spoke with was a guy named Ernest. He was a former chief, but had retired to run a fish farm. He had seen a weird creature that everyone who lived in the villages in the Savannah called the "Red-Faced Pygmies". Wherever we went, we heard stories about these creatures, and met lots of witnesses to them, too. They all said the pygmies were about three-to-three-and-a-half-feet tall and had red faces. Ernest had met one when he was nineteen in the Savannah and it had grabbed his tobacco off him!

RF: Another man, Kennard, said there was one these pygmies that haunted a certain stretch of the Savannah, and it would jump out and scare people. Although, apparently, it never actually hurt anyone. They were described as having a weird grin on their faces; they walk erect, and have brown skin, rather than fur. All the people we spoke with were adamant they were some type of small human, rather than an animal. Personally, I think they might be something similar to Homo floresiensis.

RF: Our guide, Damon Corrie, saw one once. He said he was in a tent one night and woke up to see one of these things looking down at him. And there are still sightings to this day in the Savannah. I'd say they are probably a very primitive and very ancient tribe.

NR: What about the giant anacondas?

RF: Well, Ernest had seen a very big anaconda about ten years ago, and that was around thirty feet long. This was actually the skin of the snake; and apparently it had been shot by a British chap. From what we were told, if the story is true, then the snake was clearly transported back to England illegally.

RF: We were also told of huge anacondas, more than forty feet long, that were said to live in the caves at a place called Corona Falls. The problem for us was that this was seventy miles or more from where we were; and with the savage heat and the river water being too low to travel by boat, this was one area we weren't able to get to in person.

NR: And what about this river-monster you went looking for?

RF: Yeah, this thing is called the Water Tiger. We spoke with several witnesses about this. One was an old man called Joseph, who had seen a skin of the thing after it had been killed by hunters some time in the 1970s. He said it was definitely a mammal and about ten feet long. It was white with black spots, and had a head still attached that was kind of like a tiger's head. He also said something very interesting: that the creature hunts in packs.

RF: Someone else, a guy named Elmo, told us a similar story: that there is a "Master Water Tiger," as he calls it, that sends the young ones out to hunt in the waters. Elmo is adamant they’re not jaguars or giant otters, but are something very different. I wondered if it might be some sort of mustelid, but much, much bigger than known ones. And it's very aggressive, too. Ernest told us he was on a boat with his uncle once, when something grabbed the boat, shook it violently, and they had to hang onto the overhanging tree branches to avoid getting thrown into the water. Ernest's uncle said it was a water tiger.

NR: And what about this hairy man-thing: the Didi?

RF: Well, before we went out there, we heard about this thing called the Didi, which was described as being enormous, covered in hair, and having large claws. This made me think it could actually have been some sort of surviving giant sloth. But when we got out there, everyone was adamant that the Didi is some sort of man, but covered in hair, and very similar to the Yeti or the Sasquatch.

RF: One story told to us dated from the 1940s, and was of a girl who got kidnapped by a Didi, lived with it, and apparently even had a half-breed child with it. Now, if that's true, that would imply the Didi is a hominid rather than an ape. The story was she eventually escaped on a hunter’s canoe, and when the male Didi saw her leave, he supposedly ripped the half-breed child to pieces in a rage. We heard a couple of stories like this - of the Didi supposedly kidnapping people.

RF: But, I do think it's possible that some of the Didi stories could well be mistaken sightings of giant sloths that have become confused with the real Didi. So, the legends and stories might be based on two real creatures, rather than just one.

RF: We also heard tales of dragons living up in the mountains; and although we didn't find the dragons, we did find a cave in the mountains where a burial had taken place and where there were a number of human skulls in an old pot. There was also a story from the 1950s we investigated of a group of cowboys who had tethered their horses near a lake one night and woke up to hear this loud breathing and the sounds of something big moving from the water towards the horses. Of course, they shot in the direction of whatever it was, and quickly untied the horses and left. But this area had dragon legends attached to it, too. But I wonder if some of these dragon tales might actually be mistaken sightings and legends of giant anacondas.

NR: And what are your thoughts on how the expedition went?

RF: It was very good to get lots of eyewitness testimony and stories. But it was incredibly frustrating not to be able get to the lair of the giant anaconda. But we uncovered loads of information never uncovered by Westerners before; and we have to thank both CAPCOM, our sponsor, and Damon Corrie, our guide for all his work and help. Damon runs an excellent tour service out there that I recommend to everyone.

NR: And what's coming next for you?

RF: We have a book coming out on the Guyana expedition very soon, and this will include detailed sections from each of us who took part in the expedition: me, Lisa Dowley, Dr. Chris Clarke, Jon Hare and Paul Rose. Then, we're planning to go back to Guyana next year too, and investigate more of these stories and leads on all the creatures we were told about. Late next year, we're going to the Caucasus Mountains in search of the Almasty. And very soon now I'll have a new book published titled The Great Yokai Encyclopedia, which is a definitive study of Japanese cryptozoology, and their legends of monsters and weird creatures. So, the CFZ has a huge amount of projects and work in front of us, which will take us well into 2009.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

The Press Association on Nessie...

The Loch Ness Monster Surfaces Again - On Film...

Weird Australian Creature...

Something lurks down under...

The Richard Freeman Interview Update

Hopefully, I'll have the interview with Richard Freeman - on the CFZ's expedition to Guyana in search of a whole assortment of weird beasts - posted here tomorrow; or at the very latest on Friday.

Big Cats on TV

Tonight, the History Channel's Monster Quest series digs deep into the controversy of mysterious big cats. Definitely one to watch!

Lisa Shiel on a Tennessee Bigfoot Encounter

Here's an interesting new article from Lisa Shiel on a Tennessee Bigfoot encounter. Lisa says: "In May of 1998 John J., an ex-Army man, and five of his environmentalist colleagues set out to examine a logging site in Tennessee. They carried with them a bionic ear, a range finder, and a laser motion sensor. The time was dusk. After setting up the bionic ear and laser 'trip line,' the group sat on a ridge overlooking the logging road, taking a break to enjoy a snack and a smoke.Then something tripped the laser sensor..."
Here's the rest of the story, at Lisa's new Backyard Phenomena blog.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Monsters in the Media

Despite the opening line of this article referencing the Loch Ness Monster, it actually has nothing to do with Scotland's most famous monster. Nevertheless, it's still an interesting piece.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Backyard Phenomena

Check out the new blog - Backyard Phenomena - from Lisa Shiel, author of the book, Backyard Bigfoot. As you'll see, it promises much on the links between Bigfoot and the paranormal. This looks to be a great new blog well worth reading.

Regan Lee on Bigfoot

A thoughtful and insightful Bigfoot post from Regan Lee at her Frame 352 blog...

"Cloverfield": An American Monster...

Click here for details of a forthcoming monster-film titled Cloverfield that has been the subject of much interest, Net debate and that is couched in secrecy.

The Sun-Journal On All Things Monstrous

The Sun-Journal delves into the world of cryptozoology.

The Weird Cats of Wisconsin

The new issue of Fate magazine contains an interesting and insightful article on big cats in Wisconsin. An extract from the article can be read online by clicking here.

Richard Freeman: The Guyana Interview

I just got off the phone with Richard Freeman, having interviewed him about his recent expedition to Guyana. Rich related to me some fascinating witness testimony the team secured on hairy man-beasts; giant snakes; dragon legends; and much more.
He also told me of his plans to return to Guyana next year, and divulged details of his forthcoming book on Japanese monster legends, tales and stories.
The full interview will be posted here later this week.

Friday, December 7, 2007

The Luck of the Loch Ness Monster

If you have young children that are interested in cryptozoology and you're still looking for Christmas presents for them, you may want to get them a copy of this recently-published book: The Luck of the Loch Ness Monster: A Tale of Picky Eating.
A copy was sent to me a few days ago and I can say for certain that it will definitely entertain young kids. Who knows: it may prompt them to become fully-fledged cryptozoologists when they grow up.
As the publisher's blurb for the book states: "Once upon a time, on a long, slow trip to Scotland, a little girl named Katerina-Elizabeth tossed her oatmeal overboard—again, and again, and again. She was a picky eater, and oatmeal was her least favorite food. And once upon a time, a small worm, no bigger than a piece of thread, swam alongside an ocean liner bound for Scotland and ate bowl after bowl of tossed oatmeal. He had never tasted anything as wonderful as oatmeal in his whole life. A. W. Flaherty and Scott Magoon unravel the Loch Ness legend in this whimsical picture book for the picky (and not-so-picky) eater in all of us. "

Thursday, December 6, 2007

The Blogsquatcher on Bigfoot...

Check out the Blogsquatcher's fascinating "The Bleating of the Goats" articles for some seriously weird Bigfoot info. Very intriguing stuff here.

Bigfoot in the Media

There are a couple of new stories concerning Bigfoot out right now:
Story One;
Story Two;
Story Three.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Bigfoot Caught on Film...

Coming early next year is this new book: Bigfoot Caught on Film. Keep a look out for it.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Monster Quest - Spotlighted

Monster Quest's Doug Hajicek is profiled.

Yeti or Not?

Well, is the mysterious footprint that has been creating so much controversy over the last few days really that of the Yeti? There seems to be a high degree of differing opinions on the matter. Has evidence of the beast's continued-existence been found? Some might say yes, others might say not yeti...yes, I know: a terrible joke!
Anyway, here's the latest on the story.

British Big Cats Are News Again

Britain's mystery big cats are in the news again - as this report amply demonstrates.

The Mutant Canines are Coming...

The controversy surrounding the proliferation of "mutant canines" continues to, well, proliferate! See this story, and this one.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Big Cats in Kent, England: The Latest News

Check out Neil Arnold's Kent Big Cat Research blog for the latest news on 2007 Big Cat sightings in Kent, England. As you'll see, there has been a truly phenomenal number of reports...

The Return of the Yeti

The Abominable Snowman Perhaps...?