Tuesday 31 December 2019

I would just like to wish you all the the best for 2020.I hope the year is good to you all.May it bring health,wealth and prosperity xx

Monster in Shasta Lake?

Lake Shasta Serpent 
Lake Shasta in California is  35 miles long  (56 km) and a maximum depth of 517 ft (158 metres ).Its primary inflows are Sacramento River, Pit River, McCloud River and its primary outflow is the Sacramento River.
On 10th July 2017 a family called Atwood were swimming and having a picnic on the beach at Shasta Lake.They first noticed disturbances in the water where groups of  fish were leaping out of the water.Then a large black mass breached the surface, perhaps in pursuit of the fish. Finally the creature and its head was completely in view. Mrs Atwood said :
“It was massive and slow moving, then it slowly submerged itself into the water leaving behind hardly a ripple of evidence on the lake surface. I looked to my husband to make sure he saw the giant beast too, his expression instantly told me he also witnessed the creature.”
Mrs Atwood described the Shasta lake monster as a glossy dark gunmetal grey blue colour with smooth skin, and on the dorsal side it had what looked to have hard shell like spiked scales about every 18″ or so. She said the shape of its head was similar to a rattlesnake; angular and bulky, and its eyes were pure black.
You can read the full story here :

There is a legend of a creature in the Lake.A native tribe objected to the Shasta Dam taking some of their sacred land.They summoned an ancient horned beast with a fire dance and it materialised in the Sacramento River.It was described as scaly ,huge and had horns.It did not stop the Dam but continued to reside in the Lake.
In 2018 a monster was found in the Lake :
“A morning of fishing on Lake Shasta turned into a rescue operation for a pair of Redding anglers who pulled a catfish out of an 8-foot sturgeon's mouth Monday, saving the big fish's life.Brandon Bartlett said he and his friend, Sou Saephan, had been fishing on the Pit River Arm of Lake Shasta and were returning to Jones Valley in their boat when they saw something in the distance splashing in the water.They motored over to get a closer look "and what do you know it’s a (bleeping) river monster just swimming on top of the water so I roped the tail because I could tell it was suffering," Saephan said in a Facebook post.At 8-feet, 2 inches long, Bartlett said it was easily the biggest fish he had ever seen."It looked almost prehistoric. It was really big," Bartlett said, describing the line of spikes along its back and sides.They used the boat to drag it to the shore and discovered it had a catfish stuck in its mouth.They used a pair of pliers to pull out the catfish, which was about 13 inches long."You could see the fish almost take a gasp when we got it (the catfish) out," Bartlett said.
Read full story here :

So could the Sturgeon have been what the Atwoods saw ? At over 8 feet long and with spikes on its back its sounds similar to the description by Mrs Atwood.Unless more sightings and evidence are forthcoming, a large Sturgeon may be the explanation for the monster of Shasta Lake.

Tuesday 24 December 2019

Christmas Monsters

Not all Christmas creatures are benign like Santa Claus. Krampus looks like a demonic goat who walks on its hind legs like a human. He punishes naughty  children, beating  them with birch branches and  carries a basket on his back so he can carry off a child to eat later.The 5th of  December is Krampusnacht ,men in homemade Krampus costumes run around Alpine villages causing havoc. These 'Krampus Runs' continue today.
The Karakoncolos looks like a cross between the Devil and a Sasquatch. In Turkey, the legend says he would stand at street corners on winter nights setting riddles for passers-by. If the traveller gave an answer that included the word ‘black’ they were free to go on their way. If not, he would strike them dead .Sometimes the Karakoncolos would just put them in a trance and leave them to roam free. In Serbia, the story says the Karakoncolos   jumps on the victim’s back and uses them as a ride. The exhausted person was only released at dawn.
Jólakötturinn is the Icelandic Yule Cat or Christmas Cat. Jólakötturinn, who first appeared in the 19th century,  a huge, ferocious beast with razor-like whiskers, blazing eyes and terrible claws who consumed any child who did not receive new clothes on Christmas Day.It  is tied into an Icelandic tradition in which those who finish their work on time received new clothes for Christmas, while those who were lazy did not . Jólakötturinn could tell who the lazy children were because they did not have at least one new item of clothing for Christmas and these children would be eaten by the Yule Cat.
Then there is the macabre skeleton mare of Welsh tradition,Mary Lwyd, which  rises from the dead and wanders the streets with her undead attendants, to remind the living of their existence. Mary Lwyd wants to  to get into your  house. To keep the zombie horse out, you must engage in a battle of  rhymes . Usually singing the rhymes to which the zombie horse replies.On New Year’s Eve, the undead mare is represented by a puppeteer parading a horse skull on a pole draped in white cloth around the towns and villages. 
Next there is a creature from Scandinavian folklore who looks like  a gnome and lives among the dead inside burial mounds called the Tomten.He can  act as a caretaker of the household, that is if you keep on his good side. The Tomten has quite the temper and is known for  biting people who upset him. The bites are  poisonous and  deadly. People leave a gift of food out on Christmas Eve for the Tomten.
One of Iceland’s creatures associated with Christmas is  Gryla  a giant troll who is  bad tempered with an  insatiable hunger  for children. Each Christmas, Gryla comes down from her mountain dwelling to hunt for naughty children. She catches  them in a sack and takes  them back to her cave where she boils them alive for her favourite stew.

After that all it remains is for me to wish you a merry Christmas and thank you for reading and following the blog xx

Saturday 14 December 2019

Do you believe in the cryptid Father Christmas ?

Is Santa Claus a cryptid?

You may laugh but think about the similarities between Santa and documented  cryptids.
Cryptids tend to be seen in places with difficult terrain where they cannot easily be tracked or seen. -Santa lives in an icy wasteland.
Santa disappears and reappears. There are stories about bigfoot disappearing before people’s eyes and many cryptids are only spotted at certain times of the year when conditions are right .
Santa flies through the air on a sled with flying reindeer. There are many flying cryptids from thunderbirds to mothman.
Then there are his little helpers –the elves. They could be a descendant or offshoot of the Hobbit skeletons that were found in recent years.
He leaves gifts. There are old stories of wildmen who left food for the starving on their doorsteps.
Santa is rather hairy according to many depictions with flowing beard and locks. Ditto are many cryptids.
He has a distinctive cry-Ho Ho Ho. So do many cryptids including a species of giant bat that is said to make a similar noise.
Santa only exists in folklore stories, so do many cryptids until people start to hunt for them. Nearly all cryptids from the Loch Ness Monster to the Yeti are first discovered in old stories when one looks back at the time line.
So Is Santa Claus a cryptid? Probably not as there is no eye witness testimony to back up his appearances that I am aware of (that does not include your parent in a red dressing gown and Santa hat and fake beard leaving presents at the bottom of the bed) but next time someone scoffs at your belief in cryptids, remind them they believed in Father Christmas once so don’t knock belief in the unknown.

Wednesday 4 December 2019

A Living Dinosaur in the Yukon?

The monster of Partridge Creek,Yukon.
A  story by Georges Dupuy entitled "The Monster of Partridge Creek"( in the Yukon) was  published in the French journal ‘Je sais tout’ in  1908 and The Strand Magazine.A banker, James Lewis Buttler and a miner Tom Leemore told him they were hunting moose near Clear Creek when the animals began stampeding away from them in fright.A large predator must have startled them. The men followed some tracks, which they assumed were  made by a large animal, into a rocky gorge.  On their return  Dupuy heard the story and agreed to join the men, along with French missionary Father Pierre Lavagneux and five unnamed First Nations individuals, to search for the reported animal. They established a camp site overlooking a ravine near Partridge Creek where they claimed they were able to observe an animal,10 meters( 30 feet long )with a hairy body. Scared at the sight of it  Lavagneux cried out , "A Ceratosaurus. It is the Ceratosaurus of the Arctic Circle.” Dupuy claimed he had a letter he  received from Lavagneux in January 1908 he dated Christmas Day 1907, in which the priest said that on Christmas Eve, and while in the company of ten First Nation men , he had seen the monster again,with what seemed to be the carcass of a caribou in its mouth . Tracks identical to those found back in 1903 were clearly visible in the deep mud. They were later obliterated by snow.

Normally we hear tales of living dinosaurs from hot countries ,often in jungles. This however was the Yukon,snowy and cold.It seems unlikely a creature used to warmer climes could have survived for millions of years in such conditions. Could they have seen the rare but native of the area ,a Wood Bison?
In comparison to a plains bison,a wood bison is larger and heavier, with large males reaching 3.35 m (11.0 ft) long including 54 cm (1.77 ft) tails and 201 cm (6.59 ft) tall at withers and 1,179 kg (2,600 lb) in weight, making it the heaviest living terrestrial animal in North America.The highest point of the wood bison is well ahead of its front legs and they also have larger horn cores, darker and woollier pelages, and less hair on their forelegs and beards. One such large animal caked in mud and appearing unexpectedly could be mistaken at a distance for something more sinister or dinosaur like. Just a thought in the unlikely event of dinosaurs surviving in such a cold place,sometimes a simple explanation of mistaken identity is the answer.

Friday 29 November 2019

Bigfoot sightings

There has been a spate of bigfoot sightings this year .It has been reported for years that Bigfoot is roaming the USA .Here is an example:
Bigfoot Sightings Around Eastern Iowa
The Bigfoot Researchers Organization tracks sightings all over the country. Looking at Iowa, there have been about 76 listings of Bigfoot activity in the state
There were "multiple sightings on family property near Cascade" in Dubuque county in November 2015-April 2016

Well in total I've had 5 encounters the first one being about a year ago I was bow hunting and this big hairy man like thing just came up and sat right under my tree stand I was thinking about shooting him but I didn't want to scare him out of the country so I sat there quiet as possible then he just got up and trotted off. The second encounter was 5 months ago I was riding on my four wheeler and I went past a big patch of woods and he just stood there and watched me. The third encounter was 2 months ago I was driving home from work and he was retreating into the woods by a telephone pole. The fourth encounter was about 5 days after the third encounter and the bigfoot was walking through one of our old knocked down barns and I was out on my porch just watching him and he looked at me then he ran off and hurdled a five foot barbwire fence. The last encounter was just about three days ago and he was going down a trail in our woods".

Read more see map of sightings here:

The Bigfoot legend isn’t new. American Indian folklore in the Pacific Northwest includes stories  of a man-ape beast. Sasquatch, another name for Bigfoot, is a Salish Indian name meaning “woodland wild man.” The Ojibwe tribe, whose people have lived on the land that is now Minnesota and Wisconsin for hundreds of years, have their own words for the woodland wild man. The most common of those is “bagwajanini,” .
Bigfoot reports come from all around the world.
The Yeren, or Chinese Wildman, is a man-like creature , like bigfoot, that is alleged to live in the mountainous regions of southern and central China. Part of Chinese folklore, the Yeren are mentioned in Chinese literature that dates back more than 2,000 years.The creature is described as between five to seven feet tall with a body covered with red to dark brown fur. The face resembles a cross between an ape’s and a human’s. The yeren is said to leave a large footprints, about 16 inches long, showing a five toe print like humans, but with a structure more like that of apes. Sound familiar? Could be bigfoot being described.
Villagers in the jungles of the Indian northeastern state of Meghalaya claim to have evidence of Bigfoot or Sasquatch, reports the Indo-Asian News Service. Government authorities said they will conduct a "scientific study" to examine the purported sightings near the border with Bangladesh.
The Tlingit of the South East of Alaska call it "Kushtaka, the Den'aina of Central Alaska call it "Nant'ina." and the indigenous residents of southwest Alaska call it "Urayuli" or "Hairy man. Legendary accounts say that children who go out of the house at night get lost in the woods and are transformed into the Urayuli. It is said to be about 6 to 10 feet tall covered with shaggy, coarse hair with glowing eyes. Its arms are long and it is described as looking like a primate.It inhabits in the areas near Lake Iliamna.
The South American Bigfoot known as Mapinguari or sometimes referred to as Isnashi, is described as a tall black-furred hominid usually seen in the jungles along the 'Rio Araguaia', a large river in Brazil's state of Mato Grosso do Sul.
Australia has the Yowie. The Blue Mountains is believed to be the home of a creature known as the Yowie, basically Australia’s version of Bigfoot or the Yeti. There have been many recent sightings. Prior to the arrival of Europeans local Aboriginal tribes were certain of its existence. Aboriginal communities still living in the Blue Mountains along with some other locals continue to believe the Yowie might be out there in the vast expanses of Australia’s Great Dividing Range.
Russia and the UK also have reports of bigfoot or yeti type creature sightings.
With so many reports around the world why is there no clear evidence?
Theories of what Bigfoot is range from a giant prehistoric ape to a Neanderthal type human or even an ape/human hybrid. Wilder theories say that UFOs bring the creatures here or they come from a different dimension and that they can disappear completely ,leaving no trace.
If Bigfoot does exist ,and the prevalence of stories from around the world, suggest it could ,we need a proper scientific study undertaken to find real evidence and then laws to protect it.At the moment anyone could take a pot shot at what  could be a rare creature and possibly the last of its kind.

Friday 22 November 2019

Giant Snakes in the News

Recently stories have been appearing about giant snake remains found after the Indonesian wild fires have passed over areas of jungle. The wild fires have been devastating for wildlife and humans alike.
Gigantic Python Allegedly Burnt To Death In Kalimantan Forest Fire
The recent forest fires in Indonesia have caused Singapore to be shrouded in a choking shroud of haze.While the haze may smell foul and even cause irritation, we often forget that us humans aren’t the only ones affected by the fire. Lots of animals have lost their homes, and some have even died.On Sunday (15 Sep), a Facebook user named Johan Michael Median Pasha uploaded what appears to be a massive python found in a Kalimantan forest charred beyond recognition.According to a non-profit animal welfare foundation Garda Satwa Foundation, this particular python species is known as the ‘Indonesian Anaconda.’According to Johan, the snake in the picture is a King Python. Locals call it the “Tangkaluk”, which translates to the King of Snakes.Johan wrote in the Facebook post that he has always been curious about the massive serpent, but had never seen one in person before.At one point, he thought that the elusive Tangkaluk was a creature only seen in myths and legends.
Its not the first time large snakes have been in the news in Indonesia.
An Indonesian woman has been killed and swallowed whole by a 7m (23ft) long python, say local authorities.
Though such incidents are incredibly rare, this was the second python death reported in Indonesia in just over a year.The python in Sulawesi is believed to have been a reticulated python.
They can reach lengths of more than 10m (32ft) and are very powerful. They attack in an ambush, wrapping themselves around their prey and crushing it - squeezing tighter as the victim exhales.

All this lends some credence to the stories of giant snakes in other parts of the world such as the Sucuriju Gigante.
Sucuriju Gigante (means giant Anaconda), is said to be giant snake, that controls the rivers it lives in. There are ancient tales that say it made the Amazon River. Since the discovery of the fossils of Gigantophis garstini, a large snake from the Priabonian age of the Eocene ( about 30 million years ago)that could reach 33 feet (11 metres) in length, and the more recently discovered fossils of Titanoboa cerrejonensis( from about 50-60million years ago) that reached 43 feet (14 metres) , there has been some speculation it could actually exist and be an ancestor of the prehistoric creature. There have been supposed sightings of giant snakes in South America for many years .
Read rest here:https://cryptozoo-oscity.blogspot.com/2010/02/tales-of-sucuriju-gigante-giant.html

Thursday 21 November 2019

Two Lesser Known Cryptids.

Rio Magdalena Monster
The Magdalena River is the principal river of Colombia, flowing northward about 1,528 kilometres (949 mi) through the western half of the country. In the rainy season, the Rio Magdalena in Colombia creates a vast area of wetlands. But now its flood plains are threatened by climate change, agriculture and logging.
In 1921, travellers along the northern part of the Rio Magdalena river claimed to have seen a large reptile that resembled an Iguanodon. This sighting is mentioned Karl Shuker’s book, ‘In Search of Prehistoric Survivors’.
There are West Indian Manatees in the river ,although now in danger of extinction. Could it have been one of these seen grazing on the banks of the river?
Had it been more recently there is a mundane explanation.
It was in 2007, 14 years after Escobar's death, that people in rural Antioquia, 200 miles north-west of Bogota, began phoning the Ministry of Environment to report sightings of a peculiar animal."They found a creature in a river that they had never seen before, with small ears and a really big mouth," recalls Carlos Valderrama, from the charity Webconserva.He went to look, and found himself faced with the task of explaining to startled villagers that this was an animal from Africa. A hippopotamus.
Escobar, a reported drug lord, had Hippopotami on his ranch in a sort of zoo, some of  which escaped.

 The El Fosil museum in Villa de Leyva houses some wonderful artifacts. These include several fossils found in the area, including a 120 million-year-old skeleton of a dinosaur. So dinosaurs had roamed the region in the ancient past. There have been no more reports so could it have been mistaken identity?

The San Miguel Lagoon Creature
In 1971, a creature was seen in a lagoon in Havana, Cuba. The lagoon, a flooded quarry, is  in San Miguel del Padrón, a suburb of Havana. Descriptions  varied from a spindle-shaped creature , with large and threatening yellow eyes,to a horned, hippopotamus-like animal with a featureless face. According to one witness who claimed to have seen the animal on multiple occasions: “It doesn’t look like anything but a black ball that, maybe, resembles a hippopotamus with horns, but it doesn’t really resemble any animal…and it’s got no eyes on it at all.” The government  radio station, Radio Progresso, sent reporters to investigate. One of the reporters sent to investigate the phenomenon claimed he saw the creature. He said he saw something rise from the water amid “intense bubbling.” It had a rough texture and a rounded shape. After it surfaced, it floated for a few seconds, and then sank back into the water.
There appears to be no recent reports nor any answers to what it was. However I found this from  2012 which  says a tree trunk was found some time later:https://oncubanews.com/en/magazine-articles/creature-san-miguel-lagoon/
It is possible for a tree trunk to surface with much bubbling and to sink again....or was it an unknown creature ? Sounds a bit like a giant shelled creature ,which sometime showed its shell, other times its body. Unless the lagoon is drained we shall never know.

Saturday 16 November 2019

Extinct fanged creature re-discovered ,what does it mean for the sabre tooth?

Fanged mouse-deer identified after vanishing for a generation
A small group of silver-backed chevrotains, tiny deer-like creatures, has been photographed in a Vietnamese forest after an intense search. Lost to the outside world for a generation—and feared extinct—a small deer-like species with tiny fangs has been photographed tiptoeing through a dry lowland forest in southern Vietnam. The last known scientific recording of the animal, known as the silver-backed chevrotain (Tragulus versicolor), dates to 1990, when a hunter killed one and donated the specimen to scientists.Source :https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2019/11/silver-backed-chevrotain-mouse-deer-reappears-vietnam/
This made me think about other extinct fanged creatures I wrote a blog in 2010 about sabre toothed tiger sightings.
Since then I have come across two other reported sightings that I hadn’t included.

A 1998 Science Ilustrée article said  that a sabre-toothed cat had been seen emerging from a cave in Paraguay by a French sailor named François Piquet in 1984.  Loren Coleman wrote that this report could be a rehashing of Matthiessen's story. The Science Ilustrée article also says  that another sabre-toothed cat had been seen in Mexico.

Then this from 1991
“thanks to the extensive and deep knowledge that the inhabitants of the region possess their inhabitants, most of them hunters or farmers who spend a lot of time in the forest. They had heard of the Dantero tiger and referred to him as any other animal of the local fauna. However, we only obtained a unique and invaluable detailed description of this elusive carnivore specialized in large prey. The observation took place during the dry season - from November to March - of 1991, while Tirson Sosa, a 50-year-old Indian Pemon was in the jungle hunting, about three days upriver on the left bank of the Carrao River. The animal, the size of an adult jaguar, emerged from the thicket to drink water in a well. It was not a puma, since it did not present its long tail, nor a jaguar, because it did not have the characteristic spots of its camouflage. He also noted an important detail that caught his attention: although the cat was positioned on fairly flat ground, the front legs were taller or more robust than the rear. Its colour was yellowish brown or light brown, and what appeared to be two large fangs emerged from the mouth.He immediately knew that he was facing the rare, elusive and feared wairarima. "I've never seen anything like this before," he told us. "He quietly appeared, and cautiously vanished." When we show him a "field guide" illustration of a prehistoric sabre-toothed feline, Sosa positively identified him as the Dantero tiger. These prehistoric predators have powerful front legs, useful for immobilizing their prey. The hunting manoeuvre ends with a heartbreaking bite in the throat that its formidably armed mouth provides.”

Also in South America:
An ancient tar pit exposed when Venezuelan oil workers laid a pipeline has yielded a rich trove of fossils, including a type of sabre-toothed cat that palaeontologists had never found before in South America. Scientists say the find holds the promise of many discoveries to come.The fossils are 1.8 million years old and include skulls and jawbones of six scimitar-toothed cats a variety of saber-toothed cat with shorter, narrower canine teeth than other species.Researchers led by Venezuelan palaeontologist Ascanio Rincon announced the discovery this month, saying in addition to proving the cat once lived here, the find also should offer a rare window into the environment shortly after North and South America became connected following an age of separation.

When the sabre toothed tiger was roaming the world,it was a colder, snowy or grassy plains environment. It would have to adapted a lot to exist in hot areas ,in a jungle environment with different prey to catch .However that is not impossible and at least one scientist thinks it possible.
Alan Turner, paleontologist specialist in felines and mammals in general, and author of ‘The big cats and their fossil relatives’, believes that sabre-toothed felines, as well as other prehistoric species, can survive today in a suitable environment.

Friday 8 November 2019

Could stories of Trolls be sightings of Yeti or Bigfoot

Troll or Yeti?
IN  Old Norse troll variously means fiend, demon or  werewolf. Numerous stories have been written  about trolls in which they are described as being extremely old, very strong, but slow and dim-witted, and are at times described as man-eaters and as turning to stone upon contact with sunlight.A belief that lightning frightens away trolls appears in numerous Scandinavian folktales, and may be  from stories about Thor's fights with  such creatures.
So Trolls are basically humanoid creatures who dwell deep in the wilderness of Scandinavia. Their appearance ranges from the gigantic monster to eccentric wild man. They are almost all unfriendly, no matter how  they appear. Scandinavian folklore introduces two kinds of Trolls: the giants (often called jontar) and the little folk (often called huldrefolk).
The jotnar, are giants ,some like Cyclops with one eye ,others so old and stone like that plants live on them. The huldrefolk are much more attractive  than their giant relatives. They can be mistaken for humans but  their tails give them away. All trolls like to  isolate themselves from human civilization, preferring to live in caves or murky forests where humans appear only rarely. It is said that some Trolls support themselves by hunting or farming, but most are known for waylaying  travellers, stealing their valuables, and perhaps even eating them.
So could trolls have existed? There are tales of a Scandinavian yeti or bigfoot.(see link below)

The legends about trolls might indicate a long history of sightings. There has been a small number of reports from Sweden and Norway. A type of wildman, the Snömannen or bigfoot purportedly inhabits northern Scandinavia in Lapland and the arctic regions of Norway, Sweden, and Finland. It is described as a dark, ape-like creature covered in thick, dirty, stinky hair. The face is broad with prominent brow ridges, nose pressed flat, with a mouth that juts out from a huge jaw.(Sound familiar?).
Trolls behaviour is typical of a yeti or bigfoot, isolating themselves from humans ,living in remote areas,being aggressive towards humans..Could the stories be about eye witness sightings of a yeti or bigfoot. Read the article and decide for yourselves.

Wednesday 6 November 2019

The Dingonek...real or a tall tale?

re-posted by request

Thursday, 13 May 2010

The Dingonek , tall tale or unknown creature?

The Dingonek is said to be a  walrus-like creature found in the parts of Africa, Kenya in particular. John Alfred Jordan, an explorer claimed to have shot at this unidentified creature in the River Maggori in Kenya in 1907( some reports say 1909). Jordan claimed this scale-covered creature was  18 feet(6 metres) long and had reptilian claws, a spotted back, a long tail, and a big head out of which grew large, curved, walrus-like tusks. Locals  of the area also describe it as having a scorpion-like tail and that it would kill any hippos, crocodiles, or  fishermen that happened to wander into its territory.
There is what is said to be a first hand account from Edgar Beecher Bronson in his 1910 book. :

Nights about the camp fires with Jordan were never dull. Some incident of the day or turn of the talk always served to start him on some stirring tale of weird bush happenings. That night he was particularly interesting, notwithstanding a heavy electrical storm was on and we were tightly shut in my tent, with no light but the dull flicker of our pipes. "Wonder how long it will be before the last of all the strange animal and reptilian types native to Africa have been taken and classified?" he mused. "What do you mean?" I asked. "Are there many types left which have been seen but remain untaken?" "God only knows how many," he replied. "Why, it is only four years ago I killed my bongo and got the first perfect bongo skin ever taken. Before that Deputy Commissioner Isaac had gotten a piece of a bongo hide from the Wanderobo and had sent it to the British Museum, but mine was the first whole skin ever seen by a white man, and not so very many have been shot since."My word, but they are beauties!—bright red as an impala, white of jaw, with nine white stripes over sides, back, and quarters, short of leg but heavier of body than a roan, with horns curved and shaped like a bush buck's but tipped white as ivory. Mine was a corker, nine feet, six inches from nose to tail tip, with twenty-nine and onehalf-inch horns. And it's hard to get, the beggars are; never see them outside the heaviest forest or afoot except at nights or at dawn or in the dusk. Indeed, I only got mine after putting out a lot of Wanderobo for days and days to beat up the forest."What did I do with him? Nothing, just nothing. Helpful Government did it all for me. A new species unincluded in the game license, when I got to the Eldama, Ravine Boma, Collector Foaker seized skin and head, under instructions from Provincial Commissioner Hobley, and they were sold at public auction at Mombasa for £50, a little later reselling at £250."Odd ones! Why, there's the Okapi, sort of a cross between a giraffe and a—I don't know what—perhaps a 'what is i"Then there's that infernal horror of a reptilian 'bounder' that comes up the Maggori River out of the lake the Lumbwa have christened Dingonek. And it's real prize money that beauty would fetch, five or ten thousand quid at least, and you bet I've got my Wanderobo and Lumbwa always on the lookout for one when the Maggori is in flood. "Ever see one? Did I? Rather! Mataia, the boy there, and Mosoni were with me. It was only about a year ago. Mataia vows he has seen two since; can't tell whether he really saw them or dreamed he did—like as not the latter, for I know Dingonek were trying to crawl into my blankets for weeks after we saw that 'bounder.'"How was it? Well, we were on the march approaching the Maggori, and I had stayed back with the porters and sheep and had sent the Lumbwa ahead to look for a drift we could cross—river was up and booming and chances poor. Presently I heard the bush smashing and up raced my Lumbwa, wide-eyed and gray as their black skins could get, with the yarn that they had seen a frightful strange beast on the river bank, which at sight of them had plunged into the water—as they described it, some sort of cross between a sea serpent, a leopard, and a whale. Thinking they had gone crazy or were pulling my leg, I told them I'd believe them if they could show me, but not before. After a long shauri [palaver] among themselves, back they finally ventured, returning in half an hour to say that IT lay full length exposed on the water in midstream. "Down to the Maggori I hurried, and there their 'bounder' lay, right-oh! "Holy saints, but he was a sight—fourteen or fifteen feet long, head big as that of a lioness but shaped and marked like a leopard, two long white fangs sticking down straight out of his upper jaw, back broad as a hippo, scaled like an armadillo, but colored and marked like a leopard, and a broad fin tail, with slow, lazy swishes of which he was easily holding himself level in the swift current, headed up stream.t.' Hyde Baker killed two in the Congo country less than three years ago, and one or two Germans have taken them; that 's all. Gad! but he was a hideous old haunter of a nightmare, was that beast-fish, that made you want an aeroplane to feel safe of him; for while he lay up stream of me, I had been brought down to the river bank precisely where he had taken water, and there all about me in the soft mud and loam were the imprints of feet wide of diameter as a hippo's but clawed like a reptile's, feet you knew could carry him ashore and claws you could be bally well sure no man could ever get loose from once they had nipped him. "Blast that blighter's fangs, but they looked long enough to go clean through a man. "He had not seen or heard me, and how long I stood and watched him I don't know. Anyway, when I began to fear he would shift or turn and see me, I gave him a .303 hard-nose behind his leopard ear—and then hell split for fair! "Straight up out of the water he sprang, straight as if standing on his blooming tail—must have jumped off it, I fancy. "Me? Well, I never quit sprinting until I was atop of the bank and deep in the bush—fancier burst of speed than any wounded bull elephant ever got out of me, my word for that! "That was one time when my presence of mind didn't succeed in getting away with me from the starting post, and when, finally, it overtook me, and I bunched nerve enough to stop and listen, the bush ahead of me was still smashing with flying Lumbwa, but all was silent astern. "His legs? What were they like? Blest if I know! The same second that he stood up on his tail, I got too busy with my own legs to study his. "Gory wonder, was that fellow; a .303, where placed, should have killed anything, for he was less than ten yards from me when I shot, but though we watched waters and shores over a range of several miles for two days, no sight did we get of him or his tracks. "Ask Mataia, Mosoni, or the lad there what they saw." I did so, through my own interpreter, Salem, and got from each a voluble description of beast and incident differing in no essential details from Jordan's description. Moreover, were it necessary, which I do not myself regard it, the strongest corroboration is obtainable of the existence in Victoria Nyanza of a reptile or serpent of huge size, untaken and unclassed. While in Uganda with ex-Collector James Martin in November last, he told me it was a well-known fact that at intervals in the past, usually long intervals, a great water serpent or reptile was seen on or near the north shore of the lake, which was worshipped by the natives, who believed its coming a harbinger of heavy crops and large increase of their flocks and herds. Again, in December, while dining with the Senior Deputy Commissioner, C. W. Hobley, C. M. G., at his residence in Nairobi, the very night before starting on this safari, in speaking of the origin of the sleeping sickness Mr. Hobley told me that the Baganda, Wasoga, and Kavirondo of the north shore of the lake had from time immemorial sacrificed burnt offerings of cattle and sheep to a lake reptile of great size and terrible appearance they called Luquata, which occasionally appeared along or near the shore; that since the last coming of Luquata was just shortly before the first outbreak of the sleeping sickness, the natives firmly believe that the muzungu have killed Luquata with the purpose and as the means of making them victims of the dread plague. Of the existence in the lake of such an unclassed reptile, Mr. Hobley considered there was no question” 
 Edgar Beecher Bronson did exist and did go to Africa(see link to obituary below) but how much of the book is tall tales I cannot comment. It was well known that often books were written to titillate the readership with tales of daring do. However ,(I cannot confirm this),at the Brackfontein Ridge in South Africa is said to be a cave painting of an unknown creature that fits the description of the dingonek, including walrus-like tusks. So a story born of a myth, a misidentification of  a known creature or an unknown creature of terrifying aspect? We may never know. Locals in Africa  sometimes call mokele-mbembe by the name dingonek, so it may just be a name for any unknown creature. If anyone has any thought please post a comment.

ADVENTURE PACKED THE LIFE OF EDGAR BEECHER BRONSON; Daredevil Hunter and Writer Who Died Last Week Had Thrilling Experiences in Many Lands. February 11, 1917, Sunday:
 Bronson, Edgar Beecher. 1910. In Closed Territory. Chicago: A. C. McClurg.

Living dinosaurs in Papua New Guinea ?

Re-posted by request

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Living dinosaurs in Papua New Guinea ?

There have been reports of living dinosaurs being seen on some Islands in Papua New Guinea. Here is the first one:
Since the 1990s, a large ‘reptilian’ creature has been sighted occasionally on Umbungi Island in West New BritainPapua New GuineaUmbungi Island is located on the south coast of West New Britain between Kandrian and Gasmata. The creature has also been sighted on Alage Island, about 1km to the south of Ambungi Island. The creature was described as having a long tail and a long neck and was 10–15 metres in length, with an appearance like a ‘very large wallaby’ and having a head like a turtle’s head. It walked slowly on two legs and had smooth, shiny brown skin. The top of the head was estimated to be as high as a house and the underbelly of the creature was as high as an adult. The creature was described as being fearful-looking, with the sighting being made from a distance of about 50 metres. The sighting was made in the late afternoon and was observed for a considerable length of
time.Nine people have seen the ‘reptile’ since the early 1990s, with sightings occurring every 4–5 years, usually around Christmas time. Perhaps the creature is primarily nocturnal, which might account for the small number of sightings. Two women from Ambungi Island observed the creature from a boat on the south (unpopulated) side of the island as it was standing on some rocks at the bottom of a cliff. The animal has also been sighted swimming between Ambungi Island and Alage Island with its head above the water.”
These sightings have only been found on certain religious websites, I could find no newspaper articles etc. that you would normally expect. I suspect it was in fact a large wallaby that was seen. The people were apparently shown pictures  of dinosaurs in a book. but not a natural history book with pictures of different indigenous creatures. This creates a problem as if you are only shown pictures of dinosaurs you will chose what looks closest to the animal you saw , even if it isn’t the animal because that is the only choice you have , when someone says which of these does it resemble. Kangaroos and wallabies are most active at night, dusk and dawn Generally a solitary animal unless they have a mate and a family.
There are several varieties of kangaroo and wallaby in that area and vary in sizes from the very large (15 feet or 5 metres to the small 18 inches or 45cms). For example Doria's tree kangaroo Dendrolagus dorianus  is described as follows :Head and body length 20–31 in (51.5–78 cm); tail length 18–26 in (44.5–66 cm)( overall largest  length approx 5 feet or 1 . 7 metres); weight 10–32 lb (4.5–14.5 kg).  It has a  brown coat and a paler, shorter tail . You can see from the photo it doesn’t look quite how you would expect a kangaroo to look. As the animal was seen in poor light, at dusk it could easily be misidentified and the size wrongly estimated. It is also seen at  certain times of the year  which suggests that is it life cycle to be seen solitary and feeding at those times in the calendar.  These animals are also known good swimmers.
Then there is this report also from the same sites:
One afternoon late in 2005, three people from Awrin Island, near Gasmata in West New BritainPapua New Guinea, were on the beach on the south side of the adjacent unpopulated Dililo Island when they observed an amazing creature moving in the water. Simon Patolkit (lay preacher for the Catholic Church on Awrin Island) and his wife Margaret described their sighting of the reptilian creature. The creature had a long neck and a long tail and had a total length of about 20 metres and a width of about 2 metres. The head was described as being ‘like a dinosaur’ with an ‘oval-like face’. The top of the legs of the animal were visible above the water, with the water being used to support the weight of the animal’s body. The skin of the animal was described as being ‘like a crocodile’ and was khaki green in colour. Dermal frills could be seen on the creature’s back, extending to the back of the head. Something was observed protruding from the back of the creature’s head. The creature’s neck was almost horizontal during the sighting. Details of the creature’s eye and mouth could not be determined, as the observers were about 30 to 40 metres from the animal. The sighting occurred for less than 30 seconds, until the reptile sunk into the water. No sound could be heard from the creature by the observers. The creature has not been observed since this sighting in 2005.
Again we have another problem as the report was passed on through an interpreter who only spoke pidgeon English which makes me wonder where terms like “dermal frill” came from. If the animal were as described walking through the water , it must have been shallow, so how in 30 seconds did it sink without moving very far? The idea of large dinosaurs walking in water to support their bulk went out after the 1950s when it was discovered they were quite capable of walking themselves. I wonder if perhaps the ideas from what they observed were based on old books as it may be the island is  a bit behind on text books. There were no newspaper reports I could find.
Could they have actually seen a Crocodile Monitor Lizard.? They have been recorded as reaching  15 feet(5 metres) in total length. with stories of 19 footers being told by tribesman of the Papua New Guinea jungles. Its head and neck are long, and are both covered by overlapping polygonal shaped scales which could look like a dermal fin. Some  live in swamps so I presume they can swim. The appearance of being supported by water could just have been the way the animal was swimming. I may of course be completely wrong but it just seems the more logical explanation. It may be that am sceptical because of where the reports come from, the creationist websites, and I am perhaps being unfair but it seems to me that it is a case of making the descriptions fit dinosaurs rather than  compare them with indigenous species to the area. What do you think?

Thursday 31 October 2019

Bear Lake creature

Was recently sent this documentary on the search for the Bear Lake Creature.


My original post from 2009 is below for background.

There has been a lot of discussion online about the Bear lake monster so I thought I would look it up.
The first reported story of the monster came from articles written by Joseph C. Rich, a Mormon living in the area in 1868.
Here is a copy of the original article in the Deseret News Newspaper July 31, 1868 :
"The Indians have a tradition concerning a strange, serpent-like creature inhabiting the waters of Bear Lake, which they say carried off some of their braves many moons ago. Since then, they will not sleep close to the lake. Neither will they swim in it, nor let their squaws and papooses bathe in it. Now, it seems this water devil, as the Indians called it, has again made an appearance. A number of our white settlers declare they have seen it with their own eyes. This Bear Lake Monster, they now call it, is causing a great deal of excitement up here. S. M. Johnson at South Eden was riding along near the Lake the other day when he saw something a number of yards out in the lake which he thought was the body of a man. He waited for the waves to wash it in, but to his surprise, found the water washed over it without causing it to move. Then he saw it had a head and neck like some strange animal. On each side of the head were ears, or bunches the size of a pint cup. He concluded the body must be touching the bottom of the lake. By this time, however, Johnson seems to have been leaving the place so rapidly he failed to observe other details. The next day three women and a man saw a monstrous animal in the lake near the same place, but this time it was swimming at an incredible speed. According to their statement, it was moving faster than a horse could run. On Sunday last, N. C. Davis and Allen Davis of St. Charles; Thomas Sleight and James Collings of Paris, with six women were returning from Fish Haven when about midway from the latter place to St. Charles, their attention was suddenly attracted to a peculiar motion of waves on the water about three miles distant. The lake was not rough, only a little disturbed by the wind. Mr. Sleight ways he distinctly saw the sides of a very large animal that he would suppose to be not less than 90 feet in length. Mr. Davis doesn't think he was any part of the body, but is positive it must not have been less than forty feet in length, judging by the waves it rolled up on both sides of it as it swam, and the wave it left in the rear. It was going south, and all agreed it swam with a speed almost incredible to their senses. Mr. Davis says he never saw a locomotive travel faster, and thinks it made a mile a minute. In a few minutes after the discovery of the first, a second followed in its wake, but seemed much smaller, appearing to Mr. Sleight about the size of a horse. A larger one followed this, and so on until before disappearing, made a sudden turn to the west a short distance, then back to its former track. At this turn Mr. Sleight says he could distinctly see it was of a brown color. They could judge somewhat of the speed by observing known distances on the opposite side of the lake; and all agree that the velocity with which these monsters propelled themselves, was astounding. They represent the waves rolling up on each side as about three feet high. This is substantially their statement as they told me. Messengers Davis and Sleight are prominent men, well known in the country, and all of them are reliable persons, whose veracity is undoubted. I have no doubt they would be willing to make affidavits to their statements. Was it fish, flesh. or serpent? Amphibious, of just a big fib, or what is it? I give up, but live in hopes of some day seeing it.
More recently a Captain Hirschi reported in 2002 (see article below)that he saw a sixty-five foot long monster from about two-hundred yards:
Bear Lake serpent sighting
GARDEN CITY -- Brian Hirschi may have doubted the existence of the legendary Bear Lake Monster when he purchased a pontoon-boat replica of the creature three years ago.
But all that changed one evening in the summer of 2002. After a long day of giving tours aboard the vessel, Hirschi was anchoring for the night a few hundred yards offshore when he had a haunting rendezvous with the slimy serpent. Now, he's convinced that the scores of other eyewitness accounts of the monster, which date back to American Indian times, are true. And he shrugs off naysayers who suggest that the legendary creature is just a tall tale or marketing ploy. "When you join the elite group of people who've seen it, you don't care what everybody else thinks," the 29-year-old Hirschi said Thursday. That elite group reportedly includes LDS Church presidents Wilford Woodruff, Lorenzo Snow and Joseph F. Smith. Even Brigham Young is said to have once supplied a rope to a local resident who wanted to snare the creature. Hirschi's encounter, one of the more recent sightings, occurred at about sunset as he was drifting backward to make the boat's anchor lines tight. About a hundred feet off the stern of the vessel, he noticed two small humps three feet apart in the water. His first thought was that somebody had left behind a water ski, but suddenly the humps disappeared beneath the surface. "I thought this was strange, but I had seen stranger things on the lake," Hirschi said in a written account of the encounter he posted on the Internet last year. About 30 seconds later, he felt something scrape the bottom of the boat and then lift it out of the water about six inches. "This grabbed my attention because I knew there were no underwater rocks or obstacles that could have caused this, plus the 80,000-pound boat doesn't just get lifted out of the water easily." A few moments later, less than 50 feet from the side of the boat, the monster shot out of the lake. When it landed, it made enormous waves that rocked the boat violently. Hirschi clung to the rail to keep his balance, all the while trying to keep his eyes on "whatever had just come out of the water." The monster resurfaced about 200 yards away as it swam toward the middle of the lake at a high rate of speed. Hirschi stood on the boat for 20 minutes in shock before deciding he'd better get to shore before dark. He hopped on his Sea Doo and drove back to his business, Performance Rental, as fast as he could, almost beaching the watercraft with the engine still running. "I wondered if I should tell anybody," Hirschi said. "After some thought, I finally decided I wouldn't tell anybody because they might think I had gone crazy from spending too much time on the monster boat. Plus, there were no other witnesses to verify the sighting. ... It is not until now (a year later) that I have finally decided to tell my story and let people know to be on the lookout for the Bear Lake Monster because it is still alive and lurking." Hirschi said he believes the monster approached his boat to determine whether it was a similar species. Conrad Nebeker, the Indian Creek resident who constructed the boat in 1996 to entertain his grandkids, modeled it as closely as possible after eyewitness accounts of the monster, which is said to be a green, slimy, serpent-like creature with red eyes, fangs and bunchy ears. Hirschi said the creature he saw was also about the same length as the boat. However, based on his encounter, he's decided to add red lights to replicate the monster's glowing eyes, a smoke machine to emanate mist from the replicas nostrils and an audio device to play a roaring sound. Hirschi, a Cache Valley native who graduated from Logan High School and Utah State University, said his father and grandfather were both from the Bear Lake Valley, and he spent summers there during his childhood. He has maintained that living arrangement as an adult, offering 45-minute tours of the lake aboard the monster boat seven days a week beginning in mid-June. During the tours, Hirschi recounts some of the folklore about the monster. He said he always carries a camera, just in case his passengers are lucky enough to catch a glimpse. "We tell them there's always a chance," he said. "The Indians have a tradition concerning a strange, serpent-like creature inhabiting the waters of Bear Lake, which they say carried off some of their braves many moons ago. Since then, they will not sleep close to the lake. Neither will they swim in it, nor let their squaws and papooses bathe in it."
Story published by The Herald Journal / UT | John Wright - May 22.04
So a myth or is there something in Bear Lake? The descriptions of the creature vary between a walrus like animal and a sort of prehistoric crocodile and a large brown snake. Surely all three cannot be living in the lake? I think it may be an alligator gar again but anyone reading this has any suggestions or knows more about this, please post a comment. It could of course be simply a myth that has grown over time as these things do and mistaken identity of natural phenomena in the lake, fuelled by the myth. Anyone out there know different?.
The folktale:
The article that caused the discussion:

Tuesday 29 October 2019

For those who may not know about it, you can read some iconic cryptozoology books for free at  sacred texts (link below).Two I picked up on are :

Abominable Snowmen: Legend Come to Life
by Ivan T. Sanderson [1961]

Mythical Monsters
by Charles Gould [1886]
Dragons, Sea-serpents, Unicorns: fact or fiction?

Link to site where you find many texts on mythology etc.:

Thursday 24 October 2019

New information on the Lake Clinch Monster.

New information on the Lake Clinch Monster.
I asked for further sightings of the Lake Clinch Creature and this popped up in comments on the 18th October 2019.( the story of the lake Clinch creature is below it)
Unknown said...
I live on lake clinch.I fish the southern shore ....on some mornings, there is something laying on the docks, something VERY LARGE it always just seems to "plop" into the water before Im able to see. Then at Certain times in the early hours.....what looks to be a turtle's head....but about a foot in diameter. But only the southern shore that I'm aware of. 2-4 mornings per week, between 3-5 am.
I'm right on the water, so I'm always viewing the lake. I wouldn't live any place else in Florida. The highest point in Florida is also right down the road.

Did the Lake Clinch Serpent kill a man?
Does Lake Clinch in Polk County have a lake serpent? The lake contains quite a large fish stock of Largemouth Bass, Bluegill and Black Crappie. There is a food source to sustain some thing in the lake. However there is some controversy over whether there is a tradition of a creature in the lake.
“There is a tradition that a sea serpent, or lake serpent, used to haunt Lake Clinch,” M.F. Hetherington wrote in his 1928 “A History of Polk County.” “The Indians many years ago insisted there was an immense serpent in this lake. In 1907 residents of Frostproof declared they had seen the monster, and that it must be 30 feet long - this, too, before post-prohibition liquor was known.”
And the opposite opinion:“My own inquiries to local libraries and newspapers failed to produce any leads or archival reports,” Newton wrote. “It is entirely possible that Lake Clinch has produced some cryptid sightings in the past, or that it may figure in aboriginal mythology, but as of press time for the work in hand, no further information was available.”
However I found this, an interesting story from 1926 about a man thought to have been killed by a large serpent in the lake:
“but talk about a lake creature persisted. Settlers spoke of something in the lake and early pioneers, including citizens, claimed to have seen a 30 foot [9.1 m] long “sea serpent” while boating or from the shore. On the night of August 30,1926, 49-year-old Charles M.Mallet stepped out of his simple Florida Cracker style home wearing a bathing suit and carrying a tackle box and bait. Mallett was a businessman, founder of the town’s first bank, and a partner in a prosperous fertilizer and supply company that served the local growers .He was a practical man and tales about a giant serpent inhabiting the lake adjacent to his home did not worry him as he prepared to venture onto the legendary monster’s domain. Before going fishing, Mallett had told several associates that he would be leaving for Sarasota the next day and absent from his usual haunts in the coming week. He stopped long enough to wave to a neighbor then made his way down to the dock. Like other men in Frostproof, he kept a small boat at the pier and frequently fished for the Largemouth Bass that were, and are, abundant in the lake. It was Florida’s “monsoon season” and there had been heavy rain that afternoon, but now it was clear skies as Mallett boarded his boat and headed out onto smooth dark water.
Three days later, on Thursday morning, G. D. Moree cast a fishing line into Lake Clinch from the eastern shore. While reeling it in, he snagged something big - a human body. The features were so mangled, that given the condition, it might have remained unidentified but for a ring on the corpse’s finger; the name faintly engraved on the inside of the band was “Charles M.Mallet”. To confirm the identity, a person was dis-patched to see if Mallet had returned from his trip. One of Mallett’s employees, C.C. Matthews, dis-covered the door to the Cracker house unlocked and Mallett’s personal effects and suitcase awaiting his return from the lake. There was no doubt that the body was that of Charles Mercer Mallett, but what happened out on Lake Clinch?It is likely that a physician or district coroner examined Mallett’s body (Polk County did not have a medical examiner until the 1970s). A record of the death has been found  in the state’s official Death Index" 

So is something still living in Lake Clinch? Be careful if you go out on the lake.