Thursday, February 26, 2009

CFZ Illinois: A New Update

The CFZ's Illinois rep, Derek Grebner, has uploaded a new-post to his blog: all about big-cat sightings in his home-state. And here's the link. ENJOY!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Regan: A New Post

CFZ-Oregon representative Regan Lee has a new blog-post titled Newport, Oregon: A "New" Port(al)?

As an introduction, Regan says:

"Some UFO events include the appearance of strange entities that don't seem to be extraterrestrial, but they don't appear to be cryptozoological either. Of course, we don't know what extraterrestrial is or what it should look like, not really, so we can't assume something is, or, isn't, from outer space. But if some of these weird beings aren't from outer space, and they don't seem to be 'animals' what are they? One UFO case that has seemingly one of a kind, 'not quite animal / not quite alien' entities is the Oregon Reeves case."

And what, you may ask, is the Oregon Reeves case?

Well, read on!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A New CFZ Blog

As many of you will know, the British Head-Office of the CFZ has a number of blogs on a variety of cryptozoological subjects. In addition, many of those blogs (and their readers, of course) greatly benefit from the many and varied articles that are submitted for publication.

But, now, there is a new CFZ blog - and it's another good one.

Rather than being a typical blog covering all sorts of issues (interviews, book-reviews, etc), this one is solely designed to bring you all the latest, breaking news stories in (a) the world of cryptozoology and (b) the quirkier side of the animal kingdom.

Here's the link.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Meet The Team, 11: Naomi West: Texas

The CFZ-USA Office has yet another new Texas-based rep - in addition to me and Ken Gerhard. Her name is Naomi West.

I am now going to turn you over to Corinna Downes (Jon's wife) to tell you more about Naomi:

"The CFZ has always been a more male orientated affair. Yes, there have been a few females involved within its confines from area reps to raffle ticket sellers at the Weird Weekend, but when I found myself involved by default when I met Jon, there were only a handful of the fairer sex.

"Since then, things have been changing and in the last couple of weeks we have welcomed four new area reps on board, and – I am pleased to report - they are all females (this, of course, purely from a ‘hey another female to keep me company’ point of view before accusations of sexism arise).

"Our new area rep in Texas is Naomi West. It seems that she shares my love of pet rats, and is also of the same opinion that the genders should not be pigeonholed into certain roles just because they are male or female."

And with that said from Corinna, here's Naomi herself to tell you even more:

"'I was born and raised in West Virginia, daughter of a minister. I was always looking for adventures and unexplained mysteries as a kid, and my first area of paranormal interest was the topic of the Biblical Nephilim.

"I have always loved animals -- everything from whales to bugs -- with pet rats being the dearest to my heart. I am a performing soloist, but writing is my true passion.I live in Central Texas and currently teach high school English, but I hope to be a full time writer someday.

"My husband tests weapons systems for the military here at Ft. Hood, and he is also a musician and fellow UFO enthusiast. We are both MUFON field investigators.I had never heard of Fortean Zoology until I read Redfern's Three Men Seeking Monsters.

"Since my involvement with CFZ, I have discovered that Central Texas has contributed most recently with the blue dog sightings, where my interest currently lies. I will always be most fascinated with the Loch Ness monster. Fortean Zoology combines my love of mystery with love for animals.

"Being a woman in a masculine oriented world has never been an issue for me; rather, I resent being a woman in a world where both genders, at social functions, continually try to separate into "gender oriented" activities: I don't cook, I hate shopping, I dislike "chick flicks", I have never had kids, I love theology and science fiction...oh yes, and did I mention pet rats?

"More difficult than being a woman is being a student of the paranormal in Christian circles as well as an Orthodox Christian in paranormal circles, or, for that matter, an animal lover amid hunters, or a meat-eater amid Vegans.

"I love people from most all schools of thought, but find myself often a member of opposing groups and always worried one group will throw me out when they learn I am not necessarily on their bandwagon. But I have received grace from all groups around me -- from pagans to atheists to Christians to people who think our government leaders are all Reptilians, and in the end, I just love people...almost as much as animals.

"PS. After reflecting on those bio details I sent, I wanted to clarify, for accuracy's sake, that I am not a hunter or a Vegan. That may have been confusing. I had had a long day and it resulted in unnecessary rambling. :)"

Check out Naomi's blog right here.

Meet The Team, 10: Lanette Baker, Missouri

Good news: we have another new area rep. She is based in Missouri, and her is Lanette Baker. She has a great interest in cryptozoology and has had since she was a child, as you will see below.

Lanette says that she has been to other online crypto sites but has felt that they were more of a club and that outsiders were not allowed in, nor were their opinions wanted. Well Lanette, that is not what the CFZ is about and we are very happy to have you on board!

Here is what she wrote to Corinna Downe, wife of CFZ Director, Jon:

"I think I have been enthralled by cryptozoology for as long as I can remember. I was the kid in 2nd grade who wanted to know where the dinosaurs were in the bible (that did not go over well in Sunday School class), loved stories about dragons and big foot, and I even remember talking to my mother about Nessie, and her always saying she hoped they never found actual proof of him because then 'something' would happen to him.

"I am a single mother, a bit unconventional a times, but very open with my boys. I encourage them to believe in themselves and the fact that there is more than meets the eye. They love to tease me about UFO's, my books on cryptozoology and the conspiracy theory things I read up on, but of course their favorite thing to tease me about is classes I take from time to time on ghost hunting.

"I have worked in the animal rescue field for years and have been the director of a small Humane Society in Sikeston, MO for the past 4 years. I have friends who work for the conservation department and the USDA and we often get calls on people seeing the 'black panthers', wolves (yes they are in our area), and of course the strange looking beasts that no one has ever seen before from time to time. The standing joke with all who know me is that if any of those are ever caught they will end up at my house in foster care. I often am taking care of baby coons, squirrels, skunks, and even a possum.

"Besides my 2 legged kids I have an evil cat, my spoiled rotten little dog and a fennec fox who can be a bit devious at times.I am not sure about the masculine oriented worlds, I am the grand daughter of a hog farmer.....heh grew up playing in the hills, climbing shale cliffs and helping him and the rest of my family in the country doing things. Plus I was never raised to be girly I guess, I am going to get to learn to shingle a roof pretty soon and always helped my dad since he never had a son. (though I am not allowed to touch a chain saw, something about me being accident prone....... go figure). There are not any folks around here who have an interest in cryptozoology at all, though I do have some friends who have an interest in the paranormal. "

Once again, welcome Lanette!

Commenting on Big Bird

Just recently, as you may recall, I highlighted a new interview with CFZ-Texas rep Ken Gerhard - and author of the book Big Bird - over at Tim Binnall's Binnall of America show.

Now, at his The Outsider's Edge blog, writer Richard Thomas offers a positive commentary and review of Ken's interview.

In part, Richard says:

"Very enjoyable interview this week on BoA: Audio. Cryptozoology is definitely starting to outshine UFOs and even ghost hunting in the mainstream, so I thought Ken Gerhard was a smart way to kick start the series after the mid season hiatus. Gerhard's thoughts on the Big Bird phenomenon we're refreshingly well thought out and surprisingly logical for such an incredible and unlikely subject as, basically, real life dragons. Interesting speculation about any of these strange topics is something I always enjoy and Gerhard certainly delivered in spades. I have to say I was amazed at how long he could talk on the Big Bird mystery alone, a topic that I had barely heard of, never mind looked into. Which I guess made it all the more intriguing for me."

And here's the rest of Richard's post.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Opinions of the Bigfoot Kind

You can find a new interview with me over at Alien Seeker News; and although it's chiefly not about cryptozoology, we do get into the subject, including the following on the controversy surrounding Bigfoot in Britain, and its undoubted paranormal qualities:

Paul Dale Roberts: "Do you think that Bigfoot is an inter-dimensional creature and that is the reason why we can't capture one?"

Nick Redfern: "Yep, that is definitely what I think - or, that at the very least, it is not flesh-and-blood, as we understand the term. The whole Bigfoot field has a lot of Fortean weirdness attached to it that a lot of researchers who focus more on the flesh-and-blood theories don't like to deal with, at all - because it opens some very problematic doors. But, as with UFOs, when it comes to Bigfoot I have no time for belief systems that are so rigid they can't be tampered with. To ignore the paranormal stories associated with Bigfoot actually means discarding a hell of a lot of material. And I won't do that just to bolster the simple idea that 'Bigfoot is a giant ape.' I have investigated a lot of British-based Bigfoot reports, and there is just no way a flesh-and-blood Bigfoot could live, hide, breed and die without detection in a country the size of Britain. But people see it - whatever 'it' is. And in Britain, most of the reports from there are of Bigfoot creatures appearing and vanishing in the blink of any eye, not leaving footprints, being seen near old prehistoric sites, etc."

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ken Gerhard Interviewed

Here's the details (below) of an excellent new interview with the CFZ's Texas rep, good friend, and all-round cool guy, Ken Gerhard (pictured here with his book Big Bird! at the Boston-based Mass Monster Mash that we were both at in October of last year).

The interview was conducted by Tim Binnall for his highly acclaimed Binnall of America show. And here's Tim to provide us with a summary of his interview with Ken (and click on the link directly below for all the details):

Ken GerhardBig Bird/Thunderbird, Bigfoot, and other cryptids
2 Hours, 16 Minutes

BoA:Audio returns from our Winter hiatus with a two hour interview with cryptozoologist Ken Gerhard, author of Big Bird! Modern Sightings of Flying Monsters.

In the first hour of the interview, we'll discuss the Big Bird / Thunderbird phenomenon at length, including the 1976 Big Bird flap in Texas, the bird v. dinosaur debate, "lost" Big Bird evidence, the challenge of studying Big Birds as opposed to other cryptids, and lots more.

Then, in the second hour, we'll talk all about Ken's other crypto research, beginning with his multiple investigations into Bigfoot. We'll discuss Ken's odd discoveries while on Bigfoot expeditions, thoughts on why the government might cover-up Bigfoot's existence, the kill v. no kill debate, Bigfoot burying their dead, and speculation on a post-discovered Bigfoot world.

Plus, we'll find out about Ken's trips to Belize to study the crytpids Sisemite & Dwendi and Ken will detail his investigation into the Texas Chupacabras story of recent years. It's a jam packed edition of BoA:Audio, returning from hiatus with a wealth of crypto goodness.

Full Preview:
We kick things off with the standard bio/background on Ken Gerhard and find out how he got interested in cryptozoology. Next, we reflect on the upturn in interest in cryptozoology over the past few years and Ken speculates on why the field seems to be gaining momentum lately.

We also talk about Ken's stomping grounds, the great state of Texas, and how it seems to be a hotbed of paranormal and para-political activity. Moving into the topic of the Big Bird, we find out how Ken got interested in that specific realm of cryptozoology, ultimately deciding to write a book about the subject.

Bringing folks up to speed on just what the Big Bird is claimed to be, Ken gives us a thumbnail look at the witnesses' accounts of Big Bird sightings and how the creature is described. We then cover one of the more enigmatic details of some Big Bird witness descriptions: a monkey-like face.

We then discuss the 1976 Texas Big Bird wave, which really put the phenomenon on the esoteric map. We discuss one story from the 1976 Big Bird flap that is a bit of a heart-breaker: the discovery of a potential Big Bird print, filmed by a local TV station, who never bothered to archive the footage, which has since been lost forever. Ken details some of the international legends similar to the Big Bird, including Africa's Kongamato and New Guinea's Ropen.

Ken theorizes on how such flying mystery animals, while conceivably still living in remote parts of the world, could end up flying over more populated areas of America.

Next we talk about one of the early, on-the-ground, Big Bird researchers who helped Ken find witnesses, Guadalupe Cantu III, who passed away this past Summer. We then discuss the lack of photo or video evidence for the Big Birds and Ken details what scant evidence of such kind exists: the infamous "Thunderbird photo" from the late 1800's and video footage shot in 1977 of a large flying creature.

This segues into discussion on the surprising lack of footage of the Big Bird in modern times, especially in light of the proliferation of cameras. Following that, we ponder the notion that classic stories of dragons may be related to the Big Bird phenomenon.
We then look at the unique research challenge of the Big Bird phenomenon in that, unlike land and water based creatures, the flying cryptids are not bound by a set location. We also tackle the question of whether or not the Big Bird phenomenon could be more "paranormal" in nature a la inter-dimensional or some other non-natural phenomenon.

Ken tells us about any instances that he's heard of where someone shoots a Big Bird / Thunderbird. This segues into Ken also telling us about his conversations with Bob Gimlin (of the infamous Patterson/Gimlin film) about the famous incident and how/why Gimlin didn't shoot at the Bigfoot.

Heading towards the close of our Big Bird discussion, we talk about Ken's case for the creature and why the arguments of mainstream science and skeptics just don't hold up to witness reports. We then get Ken's big picture thoughts on just what is going on with Big Birds / Thunderbirds. Ken also tells us about any reports he's heard of Big Bird sightings by people who are flying in planes.

Wrapping up the Big Bird discussion, we find out where folks can get a copy of Big Bird: Modern Sightings of Flying Monsters. In the latter half of the interview, we discuss Ken's other cryptozoological work, starting with his research into Bigfoot. He details his amazing discovery of a potential "Bigfoot Nest" while on expedition in Texas.

He also talks about his work with Chester Moore Jr., noted Texas cryptozoologist, including Ken's observance of potential Bigfoot "vocalizations" and a bizarre cache of ripped open turtle shells discovered on a beach.

Following that, we talk about theories surrounding government knowledge of the Bigfoot and speculate on why, if they knew, they would keep the creature's existence a secret. We discuss the kill v. no-kill philosophical debate surrounding Bigfoot and Ken explains why he is pro-kill.

He also explains why tranquilizers, tazers, nets, and other proposed ideas of taking a Bigfoot alive probably won't work. We also get Ken's take on the "Dianne Fossey concept" as a means of getting close to and proving the Bigfoot.

Ken recounts to us the speculation that Bigfoot may bury their dead and passes along some interesting information regarding that speculation. Speculating ahead to the future, we ponder whether or not the discovery of Bigfoot would help or hurt cryptozoology in both the short and long term future. Ken puts forth two big changes to the field which might place, should the Bigfoot be discovered and proven.

Leaving Bigfoot behind, we then talk about Ken's trips to Belize to hunt for two relatively unknown mystery creatures: the Sisemite, a Bigfoot-like animal, and the Dwendi, a smaller, gnome-like being. He shares some remarkable Diwendi reports from the Belize natives, who describe the creature much like many other small "trickster" type entities.

This segues into some discussion on how there don't seem to be as many legends in North America of Dwendi-esque creatures, despite there seeming to be many such legends from around the world. Heading towards the close, we discuss Ken's in-depth research into the Texas Chupacabras flap that has been going on over the last few years.

Ken explains how the present Texas creature ended up being dubbed the "Chupacabra." He also shares information gleaned from his examination of the dead "Chupacabras" that have turned out in Texas recently.

Wrapping things up, we find out what's next for Ken Gerhard, including some future book projects and TV appearances. We also find out which Monster Quest episodes have featured Ken so far, so folks can catch them on their DVR and see Ken in action.

This interview was recorded on 2.2.2009

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Four-Corners Crypto

Check out the new Four-Corners Crypto story from CFZ-Michigan rep and very good friend, Raven.


Melissa Miller - the CFZ rep for Oklahoma - provides an excellent (and creepy!) new article on reports of human-like snakes (0r, depending on your perspective, snake-like humans). Check it out; it's a good one!

And Talking Of Regan...

Here's a brand new interview with Regan over at Paratopia...

A White Oregon Bigfoot

From time to time, reports surface of Bigfoot-style creatures that, instead of being covered in brown or black fur or hair, are white in color - and here's a very interesting article on just such a beast from CFZ-Oregon representative Regan Lee.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Meet The Team, 9: Greg Bishop, California

It's time to introduce you to another of the CFZ's regional reps: my good friend Greg Bishop, who is coordinating the California office (and who can be seen with me in this photo taken in 2008 at the grave of Johnny Ramone). As well as being a genuinely good guy, Greg is responsible for some of the most thought-provoking Fortean material it will ever be your good fortune to read.

And, to give you more information on Greg, here's his bio:

Greg Bishop became interested in UFOs at a very early age. He has no idea why. In 1991, he co founded a magazine entitled The Excluded Middle, for the purpose of educating himself first, and secondly, passing on the info to interested readers. How selfish.

TEM was a journal of UFOs, conspiracy research, psychedelia and new science (now online at ). "Wake Up Down There!" a collection of articles from the magazine, was published in 2000.

Greg’s writing has appeared the L.A. Weekly, Fortean Times, UFO Magazine and Magical Blend, among others, and in the book-length anthologies "Conspiracy And Cyberculture," "Zen And The Art of Close Encounters," "Kooks," and "You Are Being Lied To."

In 2005, his book "Project Beta" was an attempt to set the record straight on the Paul Bennewitz disinfo saga.

His third and newest title, "Weird California," was published in March of 2006. His Internet show, "Radio Misterioso," can be heard on Sundays from 8-10 PM PST at

Interviews with fringe-topic researchers and weird music are the usual fare. In 1989 he found out that life does not in fact, suck, and set out to prove it to himself.

He has interviewed Larry King about his saucer sighting, hoaxed a UFO on a camping trip, broken into abandoned mental hospitals, searched for entrances to underground civilizations, wandered through graveyards in the dead of night, spoken to an audience of 800 in New York, installed a pirate FM transmitter on his roof, got Genesis P. (Psychic TV) Orridge to sign a baseball, hiked in 200 foot canyons so narrow he had to walk sideways, seen naked couples writhe in mud after a desert thunderstorm, destroyed a Rush Limbaugh book with a 9mm pistol, flown airplanes and sailplanes and insulted UFO researchers without even trying.

His influences include Robert Anton Wilson, Edward Abbey, Martin Kottmeyer, Nick Redfern, Jim Brandon, Bill Hicks, Jacques Vallee, William S. Burroughs, Alva John Keeler, Jim Martin, Bill Moore, John Fante, Dean Radin, Lenny Bruce, Kenn Thomas, Whitley Strieber and every UFO contactee that has ever lived.

When not writing, he can be found in the southwestern deserts of the US or flying his para-glider above vertiginous cliffs and mountains, sometimes with a propeller strapped to his back. Successful bribes include New Mexican cuisine, recordings of “outsider” music, rare contactee books, tickets to baseball games and selected original artwork.