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Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Book Review: The Roswell UFO Conspiracy by Nick Redfern



Today I finished Nick Redfern's most recent book, The Roswell UFO Conspiracy: Exposing a Shocking and Sinister Secret. It is a follow-up to his 2005 book Body Snatchers in the Desert, also about what came down at the Foster Ranch, Roswell, New Mexico, in July of 1947. Most people, when they hear "Roswell," think of a crashed UFO. But the sources Nick talked with for Body Snatchers in the Desert had a decidedly different story to tell. One that didn't involve extraterrestrials.
With author Nick Redfern

From those four sources, and others who talked to other people and/or researchers, and from information from government files, Redfern concludes that what came down at Roswell in 1947 was definitely not a "UFO" of the alien type. Far more likely, as the evidence points to, it was something from the U.S. government that they wanted (and still want) to keep secret.

The theory that Nick supports in this book is that what came down at Roswell (and there were actually multiple crashes, not just one incident) in the summer of 1947 were secret aircraft and/or balloons being tested by the U.S. government. And the "dead aliens" weren't aliens at all. They were people.

From the evidence presented in the book, it seems that after WWII ended, the U.S. secretly began working with German, Japanese, and/or the Russians on secret prototype aircraft. And they used people in the test flights, not "test dummies" as the Air Force has said years later. And it was these people that have been mistaken for aliens. As it turns out, they were most likely physically and/or mentally handicapped Japanese used in the experiments. People who say they saw the bodies claim they were short, had enlarged heads and small ears and noses, and other deformities of that sort. In other words, deformed dwarves.

Back to the subject of the U.S. possibly working with Germans… it is claimed that the U.S. government had Josef Mengele (the "Angle of Death,"), a German who did horrific experiments on prisoners during WWII, involved in the projects that resulted in the crashed "UFOs." Another, very interesting note is that Mengele had a particular fascination with human dwarves.
Josef Mengele, who did horrific experiments on
people in Germany in WWII

If you read this book, your perspective on Roswell will likely change.

Unless, as Nick notes, you're a UFO researcher who doesn't want to believe that what came down at Roswell wasn't a UFO. The "Holy Grail" case of UFOlogy would be proven to not be a UFO at all. But is it really that horrible? That's not where the evidence points to!

Because guess what - the multiple U.S. experiments that crashed in the New Mexico desert in the mid-to-late 1940s weren't UFOs. As Nick says at the end of the book… Aliens didn't crash at Roswell!


Small Town Monsters - Mothman, Chestnut Ridge, Champ, and More...



As I do every couple of months, here is an update of what my friend Seth Breedlove and the Small Town Monsters crew are doing - their recently released movie, upcoming events, and what they have in store for 2018…

Seth said of The Mothman of Point Pleasant, released last month:

"Mothman was kind of our do or die movie. We actually were in a position with STM where it was sort of like, either this thing succeeds or we probably need to reexamine what we're doing. Thankfully it has largely succeeded beyond our wildest imaginations. Particularly in the area of how it's being received by paranormal enthusiasts and an average non-para audience as well. The response has been phenomenal."

The next film STM will be releasing is coming this October. The film, Invasion on Chestnut Ridge, examines reports of many strange things along the ridge in Pennsylvania. Seth said a little bit on what the movie will be like:

"It's a weird movie. Our weirdest to date. We've got orbs and Bigfoots coming out of UFOs and thunderbird encounters. It's basically an exploration of one particular area where lots of really weird things happen. I can definitely say there isn't another movie like this out there and that I think it's going to blow some minds. We even strayed from our typical STM formula.
"Tonally and mood wise and even from a visual standpoint it's very reminiscent of old 80s tv shows like Unsolved Mysteries and In Search Of. It's also the closest our movies have come to a straight-up horror documentary. But Horror as seen during the 80s rather than today's horror. Just kind of unnerving and weird. Did I mention this movie is weird?"
 

The STM crew is also working on a new series titled On the Trail Of… The first, On the Trail of Champ, will be released next year and Seth tells us a little about it and what they have planned for the series:

"On the Trail of… is our place to tell huge, sprawling stories about Cryptids. We're kicking off with Champ which is being directed by Aleksander Petakov and produced by me. It'll be told in episodic format on Amazon, Vimeo OnDemand and DVD and eventually be cut into movie format for a wider release.
"We really wanted to play with episode storytelling so this will give us that opportunity. Because of that fact we won't have the typical time constraints put on us in our films and we'll be able to really tell these huge narratives that some of these stories deserve. Even getting into the actual searches to find these creatures which is something we've never done in a typical STM movie. It's going to be big. And there will be more following Champ."

Below is a list of all the events STM will be at over the next few months:

"Nothing until September and then we're booked almost solid through end of October. We've got Loren Coleman's International Cryptozoology Conference September 3rd, Cryptid Con September 9th and 10th, Mothman Festival the 15th-17th, the I'm in Missoula, Montana for a screening of Boggy Creek Monster on September 21st followed by Big Sky Bigfoot Conference the 23rd. In October we're at the Chautauqua  Bigfoot Expo, Creature Weekend 2017 and the Balboa Theater is hosting the west coast premiere of Invasion on Chestnut Ridge (the same day it premieres at Creature Weeked, fittingly) followed by a double header showing of Invasion and Mothman at the Canton Palace Theatre on October 28th."

Lastly, some of the stuff coming from STM within the next year:

"...Casefiles is coming and I don't think it's been quite apparent just what we plan on doing with this yet. I can tell you it's going to be free on YouTube and will be much more than what most might be expecting. Our first two episodes are about Indrid Cold and we'll be interviewing someone very connected to the Woodrow Derenberger/Indrid Cold story. I've been saying all along these are going to almost be mini- STM movies. Other than that we have Champ, and our sixth and seventh movies slated for release in 2018. And we're signing with a major distributor in the next couple of weeks so our films will hopefully, fingers-crossed, be seeing the wide release we feel they deserve."


 Be sure to be on the lookout for more from Small Town Monsters…

More info on STM and their movies can be found at the following links:

Website
Facebook 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Matt Moneymaker: Real Sasquatch Photo from Washington

Matt Moneymaker recently posted the following photo on Twitter.

His comments were:

"Here's photo of real sasquatch in Washington State. An elk hunter witness at recent Colorado town hall says the one he saw almost identical."

Is it really a real sasquatch?

What do you think?

Crypto-Kid: Stan Gordon Tonight

Colin Schneider has a new episode of his Crypto-Kid show, live tonight at 8pm on WCJV Radio!

Tonight's guest is author and researcher of the weird Stan Gordon.

"Tonight on the Crypto-Kid I am joined by the one and only Stan Gordon. Stan has been researching the fields of ufology and cryptozoology in Pennsylvania for over fifty years. He is the top authority on the Kecksburg UFO Crash and the Bigfoot/UFO wave of 1973. Colin and Stan will discuss the upcoming Kecksburg UFO Festival and his wide array of cryptid cases."

Don't miss it!

Dragons and "Werewolves" - New Books

Some new books I got today - Dragons: A Natural History by Karl Shuker, and Beast: Werewolves, Serial Killers, and Man-Eaters: The Mystery of the Monsters of the Gevaudan by S. R. Schwalb and Gustavo Sanchez Romero.

Reviews coming soon...

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Invasion on Chestnut Ridge - Trailer Released

The trailer for the next Small Town Monsters film, Invasion on Chestnut Ridge, has been released. Watch it below.

There is also this press release from STM:

"PENNSYLVANIA PREPARES FOR AN 'INVASION'
"AWARD-WINNING FILM COMPANY RELEASES DOCUMENTARY  CENTERED AROUND THE CHESTNUT RIDGE
"A new filmed titled Invasion on Chestnut Ridge (from the creators of the just-released documentary, The Mothman of Point Pleasant) now has a trailer. 'Invasion' tells the true story of one of the more bizarre places in America, Pennsylvania's Chestnut Ridge, and the unusual activity that has taken place there for decades. Ahead of the launch of the film, the official trailer has been released. Delving into one of the most intriguing, and unusual regions this side of the Bermuda Triangle, the film will tell the tale of the Kecksburg UFO crash, the Uniontown Bigfoot/UFO sightings, encounters with a  large, prehistoric bird in Keystone State Park and much more.
"The trailer shows glimpses of just a few of the interviews conducted with locals, witnesses and investigators interspersed with footage depicting some of the unusual activity that has taken place along the ridge. Invasion of Chestnut Ridge will be the first feature film to document this hotbed of paranormal activity. Is the ridge a magnet for strange and mystifying forces? A beacon to visitors from beyond? You be the judge when the film is released on October 20th!"

 STM films are the best-of-the-best when it comes to documentaries on cryptids and other unexplained things. Their latest is The Mothman of Point Pleasant, the definitive documentary on the subject…




Thoughts on Wisconsin Werewolf Doc?

So… the North American Dogman Project's DVD of The Wisconsin Werewolf has been out since the 15th of this month… so far it has 2 "5 star" reviews on Amazon, though one of them is from Donna Fink - who I believe had a part in making the film.

Anyway, I was wondering if any readers have seen said doc and what you think of it? To me it really doesn't look that good, so I'm not really planning on getting it… is it just like a Joedy Cook book in DVD form? (Since I'm assuming he had lots to do with it since he basically heads the NADP.)

Still not liking the whole "Neighborhood Monsters" 'production company' (if you would even call it that) ripping of Small Town Monsters. I'll stick with their films which I know will always be top notch.

How is The Wisconsin Werewolf?

Really bad?

Somewhat bad?

Mediocre?

Somewhat decent (somehow)?


Saturday, July 22, 2017

The Loch Ness Seal

It was official. The Loch Ness Monster had been found! It was March 31, 1972, and eight scientists from the Flamingo Park Zoo, Yorkshire, were having breakfast at the Foyers House hotel on the shore of the loch. They were there with the Loch Ness Phenomena Investigation Bureau (LNPIB) and were going to try out a new “hormone sex bait” to try to lure in a monster.



But it seemed like they didn’t have to, because the hotel manager came up to them during breakfast and told them that someone had just reported seeing “a large hump” that was floating in the loch, and near the hotel, too! And when the scientists went to look, they saw it - a large, dark colored object about 300 yards offshore, bobbing up and down in the water.

The scientists were directed to their boat by Terence O’Brien, the leader of the team. They went out into the loch to investigate the object, and returned 20 minutes later, at 9 a.m., with the dead body of a monster!

The news quickly spread around the world. Within hours, televisions were reporting that the Loch Ness Monster was dead. News reporters flocked to the lake. Residents there confirmed that something had been found. “I touched it and put my hand in its mouth. It’s real, all right,” Robert MacKenzie said. “I thought it looked half-bear and half-seal… green in color… with a horrific head like a bear with flat ears. I was shocked.”

Headline from the April 1, 1972 edition of the
Los Angeles Times


Other people there told the reporters that the monster was between 12 and 18 feet long and weighed 1 ½ tons. It was described as having a “green body without scales and was like a cross between a walrus and a seal.”

Don Robinson, Director of the Flamingo Park Zoo, was contacted and he seemed to confirm the whole thing.

“I’ve always been skeptical about the Loch Ness Monster, but this is definitely a monster, no doubt about that. From the reports I’ve had, no one has ever seen anything like it before… a fishy, scaly body with a massive head and big protruding teeth.”
The scientists had loaded the body up in their truck and sped it back to the zoo. Or, they tried to, at least. The Inverness police heard that the English scientists were making off with their Scottish monster, and they contacted the police in Fifeshire County. The police went after the “monster-nappers” and soon caught up to them. The scientists pulled over and showed them the creature in the back of their truck, which was again described as “green and scaly.” 


The body was taken to the nearest town, Dunfermline. The police had Michael Rushton, curator of the Edinburgh Zoo, examine it. Rushton did so, and found that it was by no means a monster - it was a bull elephant seal, about 3 to 4 years old. Elephant seals live in the South Atlantic Ocean, located thousands of miles from Scotland. “I have never known them to come near Great Britain,” Rushton said. “I don’t know how long it’s been kept in a deep freeze but this has obviously been done by some human hand.”


The next day, it was revealed that the whole thing was a hoax. John Shields, education officer at the Flamingo Park Zoo, admitted that he was the one behind it. He had used a seal that was recently brought back from the Falkland Islands, but which died shortly after, to prank his colleagues.

Geneva Times article


Shields had obtained the seal, shaved off its whiskers, padded its cheeks with stones, and then froze it for a week. On the 31st he had dumped it in Loch Ness and then called the hotel to be sure the other scientists found it. Shields timed the whole thing so that the “monster” would make headlines on April 1st, which also happened to be his 23rd birthday.

He did admit, however, that the whole thing got “out of hand” when the police went after the scientists and the “monster.” He also noted that the seal was not green and scaly, and was only 9 feet long and 350 pounds.

When the police found out that the whole thing was a prank, they let the scientists take it back to the Flamingo Park Zoo. When the team returned with it, it was displayed on a block of ice for a few days before being properly disposed of.


The Loch Ness seal



But there may be even more - and something even stranger - to this already strange story.
Two weeks after the seal story, Norman Slater, a 28-year-old teacher from Wisconsin, was on a fishing trip at the loch. While there he dipped his hand in the water and, he said, he detected - with extrasensory perception - “the presence of six large creatures in the water.” He claimed he saw a “particularly vivid image” of a creature that was between 70-90 feet long, with a “large neck” and “slim, worm-like body.” The top of the monster was “brown and scaly” and the bottom was white. Slater said the animals were “just lying around the bottom” and also claimed that he could see underwater passages connecting the loch to the sea!


Slater complained that he was the victim of bad timing, since the Loch Ness seal hoax had just happened, and that no reporters would take his vision of  “obvious scientific importance” seriously. But it would not surprise me if he was only trying to follow the seal story with another hoax.

This story of a "Not-Loch Ness Monster" (more can be found here) is part of a new examination I am doing… more on that later...

Friday, July 21, 2017

Monsters Among Us - A Very, Very Skeptical Look at Cryptids

Today I finished reading Andrea McGann Keech's recent book Monsters Among Us: The Truth About a Hidden World You Never Knew.

There isn't really any "truth" in this book.

Keech examines many, many cryptids including Bigfoot and Yeti, the Loch Ness Monster, Wendigo, Mothman, Beast of Gevaudan, mokele-mbembe, thunderbirds, and more. And since the book is only about 150 pages, each cryptid gets on average around 5-6 pages of coverage.

And about a third of that, usually, is made up of a story she puts at the beginning of each chapter about each certain cryptid, many of which are quite… odd…, or show them as vicious killer beasts! In the Mothman chapter, she even takes the Scarberry-Mallette story and just adds in two random people instead! She apparently fancies herself a storyteller, even though most of them aren't that good at all.

When she actually gets to "examining" (and I use the term very loosely) each cryptid, she basically barely covers its history and/or sightings at all and then at the end says "I really doubt -this cryptid- exists." For example:


  • In the mermaid chapter, she talks about legends of sirens and such very shortly, then goes on to says "…and mermaids appeared in this movie, and this movie, and this movie, this Animal Planet show," and on and on. Really no coverage of the mermaid legend itself.
  • Thunderbird chapter - she mentions Quetzalcoatlus, an ancient giant pterosaur, and basically talks about how it was discovered, and how someone, sometime built a life-size animatronic one, and concludes that t-birds can't exist.
  • Mothman (and the Flatwoods Monster is mentioned too and takes up half the Mothman chapter) - she says that the FM was definitely an owl (though the last time I checked, owls weren't 10 feet tall and didn't have a noxious gas around them that makes people sick). She also concludes that the Mothman is an owl as well and associating it at all with the Silver Bridge collapse is stupid. She makes absolutely no mention of the UFOs, weird telephone/TV interference and calls, Men in Black, etc. that was going on at the time. Also, I don't know of any owls that can fly 100 mph!
One weird owl...

When she does somewhat examine a cryptid, she basically only looks at the theories that say that it is a hoax or something "known." Oddly, the only cryptids she thinks might exist are the mokele-mbembe and some other "prehistoric survivors" in Africa! I guess a living dinosaur is more realistic to her than unknown creatures in the ocean or an unknown ape…

With each theory that says something "might be -this animal-" or "that animal," she has to mention that she, too, has seen said animal! She has seen pelicans before, so thunderbirds can't exist! She has seen a manatee! She has seen an owl before, so that's what Mothman must be!

While I don't mind skeptical examinations of cryptids, this one is not an "examination" and the author doesn't even consider other options and obviously has no idea what she is writing about. No bibliography is listed in the book, and basically the only sources she notes in the book are "Whatzit News.com" from sometime in December 2015, this other news site… something written on a news site about a sighting in 1888…, and I think you get the point.
Maybe this is where she got all her info?

If you want to get Monsters Among Us, get Linda Godfrey's book of the same name from last year, not this one.

A very, very good book!

Next book review will be Nick Redfern's The Roswell UFO Conspiracy, which actually looks to be good...

DNA Techniques Could Possibly Prove if Thylacines Still Live

There could be a new way of proving whether or not the thylacine (also called the Tasmanian tiger) still lives…

ABC News reports:

"Modern forensic science could be used to solve the mystery around the existence of the Tasmanian tiger, a lab researcher says.
"Reports have regularly emerged of people who say they have seen one, with grainy photographs often presented. But now it is thought DNA sampling could help to provide a conclusive answer.
"Tasmanian tiger enthusiast Col Bailey has spent much of his life trying to prove the thylacinus cynocephalus - which roughly translates as 'pouched dog with a wolf's head' - is still alive and at large.

Col Bailey, thylacine hunter

"He has written a number of books on the subject and maintains he saw one in southern Tasmania in 1995.
"Bailey said it was in the Weld River Valley, near a creek amongst thick bushland.
"'I went to walk towards it and it backed back, and then it turned a full circle and turned around and stood glaring at me,' he said.
"'It snarled, with a hiss, and that stopped me dead in my tracks and then the penny dropped and it dawned on me that it was a Tasmanian tiger.'
"Other than his own recollection, Bailey has no proof of the sighting, but new DNA sampling being conducted in South Australia to aid in a platypus hunt could provide a way of verifying similar encounters.
"Senior manager of laboratory services for Australian Water Quality Centre, Karen Simpson, said if a tiger had either drunk or walked through a water sample, its DNA could be identified.
"'We do have the DNA of the thylacine in our database,' she said.
"'If there has been a Tasmanian tiger out there and we collect the sample that captures the DNA, we'll be able to determine positively if its present or not.'
"Danger DNA Samples Could Dilute
"Wildlife biologist Nick Mooney spent 30 years investigating many of the tiger sightings that had been reported to the Tasmanian Government.
"He said the DNA water testing technology could have helped him verify evidence, such as a cast of footprints from 2010.
"'Somebody gave me a cast of some footprints that they claimed were taken near Lake Pedder,' Mr Mooney said.
"'I can't vouch for them because I didn't record them, all I can vouch for was that someone gave to me claiming they're from there.'
"Lake Pedder, in south-west Tasmania, is part of the largest dam and water storage system in Australia, and Ms Simpson said there was a risk any potential DNA could float away.
"'Because it's such a large water body, the issue becomes, I guess, dilution,' she said.
"'You would really need to try and pinpoint what point of that body or lake (the thylacine) was interacting with to try and collect your samples from that area.'
"Ms Simpson said the best type of water to test in would be a small pond, meaning there was still a large chance any proof of living thylacines could slip away."
Lake Pedder photo taken in late '60s/early '70s
(Stefan Karpiniec, Wikipedia)



DNA searching for thylacines could be what finally solves the mystery of whether or not they still live. And, unlike something like Bigfoot, it could actually work. Since there is no Bigfoot DNA in any databases, the mystery hairs and such found across the United States and Canada cannot be conclusively proven to be from a Sasquatch. That is not the case with thylacnies. If DNA of one is found, it is in the database, and they could be proven to be extant, not extinct.

 

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Any Fake Shark Week Shows This Year?

Shark Week starts on the Discovery Channel this Sunday… so will there be any totally fake shows like that Megalodon crap from a few years ago?

From the official schedule of new shows, it actually doesn't look like we will!

I actually very much enjoy Shark Week… when there's real documentaries! And if they aren't all just a "we're gonna tag this shark" like they do sometimes…

Anyone else watching Shark Week?

Update: well, there kinda was - apparently Michael Phelps raced a cgi great white. Wow, Discovery Channel. Really.

Encounters with the Chupacabras - Western USA



In the mid-1990s, the Chupacabras leapt onto the cryptozoology scene - reports started in Puerto Rico, but soon spread to the US as well… and these are not the "blue dog" variety, either...

"Police in Tucson, Arizona received a call on May 1, 1996 from a man named Jose Espinoza. Something had broken into Mr. Espinoza's house. He described the intruder as a creature with large, red eyes, a pointed nose, and shriveled features. According to the witness, the Chupacabras had entered the home, slammed a door, and jumped on his seven-year-old son before hopping out the window. Footprints and handprints were found on the walls. Most of the handprints, however, matched those of Mr. Espinoza's son.
"Espinoza may not have been lying, however, because, on May 2, a dozen goats and a sheep were found dead. Whatever had caused the deaths had also wounded several cows. The rancher on the farm saw the creature later and shot it with a rifle. Despite the wounds. the Chupacabras continued to go to the farm night after night.
"Donna, Texas was the next town in the United States to have the displeasure of being visited by the Chupacabraas. Sylvia Ybarra found her pet goat dead in the yard in the middle of May. It had puncture wounds on its neck.
"A man living in California said a Chupacabras had bit his hand while he was sleeping. He felt a tugging on his hand and woke up to see a shadowy figure disappear from the window. He was puzzled because there was nothing but an alleyway outside his window (he loved in a third story apartment). How could the Chupacabras have gotten up there and just disappear? Did it fly? Possibly. Many people who saw the Chupacabras in Puerto Rico in '95 and '96 said it could fly by levitating or  moving the quills on its back."

This post is excerpted from my book Cryptid U.S.: Tales of Bigfoot, Lake Monsters, and More from Across America.

Land Loch Ness Monster Photographed - Or Not

Various news outlets are reporting on a "Land Loch Ness Monster" that was photographed recently.

Here is the report from The Sun:

"A WALKER was left stunned after stumbling across this Loch Ness Monster lookalike.
"Jimmy Wright, 66, snapped an astonishing photo while out walking his dog on Crow Hill, Killearn, Stirlingshire.

Land Nessie!

"He posted the image on Facebook and claimed, after spotting the creature, it had disappeared from sight.
"He then asked his friends: 'A land relative of 'Nessie' perhaps?'
"However, some of Jimmy's friends disagreed with his theory, many submitting one of their own - a tree stump.
"Heather McCabe commented: 'Old tree stump??' and Elaine McLeod said: 'The native Killearn tree stump.'
"The 'surgeon's photograph', snapped by Colonel Robert Wilson in 1934, is probably the most famous Nessie sighting ever. It was later exposed to be a hoax.
"In 2012 George Edwards took a stunning picture of Loch Ness, claiming that he had finally found definitive proof of the giant creature's existence.
"The following year the boat skipper admitted he had made the whole thing up.
"In 2014 a satellite photo on the Apple Maps app seemingly showed a 100ft shape swimming in the loch.
"The mysterious outline sparked renewed interest in Nessie after a lull of several years, with the Official Loch Ness Monster Fan Club claiming it was 'likely' to be the camera-shy monster.
"However, experts insisted it was merely a boat and its wake."

Definitely not a "Loch Ness Monster."  I have to agree with Elaine McLeod that this is the "native Killearn tree stump!"
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

"Expedition: Find Bigfoot" Article



Spectrum News Austin has a new article up on the "Bigfoot expedition" that took place in Round Rock on the 15th:

"ROUND ROCK, Texas - The city of Round Rock hosted Expedition: Find Bigfoot Saturday night.
"It was an event culminating all the recent Bigfoot 'sightings' in the area. Kids came out in droves for their chance to spot Bigfoot in Round Rock Saturday night at the city's Expedition: Find Bigfoot event.
"The kids said they heard all about the recent 'sightings' and just had to join in on the hunt.
"'Right when I heard of Bigfoot, I just got so interested in it,' said Reed Bales, an eight-year old.
"The Round Rock Parks and Recreation Department is glad its Bigfoot campaign is working. They launched it last month.
"'We really created this Bigfoot expedition program to get kids outdoors and off video games and so far, it has really worked. Our parks rangers report hundreds, if not thousands, of family members walking through our trails and coming to our parks in Round Rock,' said Roger Heaney, a communications specialist with the city.
"Saturday night's event was a celebration of the campaign and all the recent 'sightings.' The parks department even brought in expert Bigfoot trackers to help families search. The experts scour the country for 10 months out of the year, looking for proof of the creature.
 "'I've had seven encounters up close and personal in my tenure of 50 years. The ones that we've had really close were the ones in Paris, Texas,' said Tom Biscardi, founder of CEO of Search for Bigfoot.
"The kids who showed up to search in Round Rock had their own personal encounter with the hairy beast. Eight-year-old Bales used one word to describe what he saw.
"'Awesome. It has to be real,' said Bales."

While I think it's great that these kids are interested in Bigfoot, they of course didn't "find" anything because  there's no Bigfoot in Round Rock. And Tom Biscardi is no Bigfoot "expert" and I wouldn't have brought him in as he has been a central player in several hoaxes over the years (and each time he said he'd been duped, too. Whatever. Either he was involved or he falls for anything, and I'm better on the former).

If the kids are really interested in Bigfoot, don't fake stories… get them some books on it, go to places where there actually has been activity, take them to a Bigfoot conference or a library talk… with actual researchers, maybe.

Nessie - A Gigantic Wels Catfish?

Steve Feltham, record holder for the longest search for the Loch Ness Monster, thinks that the Nessies may be some gigantic Wels catfish.

Earlier this week I was watching a show on National Geographic on giant-sized catfish in rivers in Europe (called River Jaws: Monster Catfish). At first I wasn't really paying attention, but then started to and found it quite interesting. Some catfish had been released in various rivers, lakes, etc. and some have reached gigantic sizes, like this giant wels catfish that was caught in 2015, and which was filmed for the show.

(Daily Mail)

(Daily Mail)

After watching the show, I began to think more about the theory that the Loch Ness Monsters could be gigantic Wels catfish.

If there are catfish that big in the loch, and someone on the shore on on the lake itself saw one like the one pictured above, it would certainly seem like a monster, wouldn't it?

This is a theory that I think may have some merit…

Wels catfish

Monday, July 17, 2017

Cryptid Culture - July 2017 - Prehistoric Survivors Article



The July issue of Cryptid Culture Magazine is out now! I wrote an article on possible prehistoric survivors in Australia that is included in this issue.

Other articles in this issue include:


  • The Monster of Lake Pepin by Chad Lewis
  • A (Not So) Diminutive Look at Cryptic Dwarves by Colin Schneider
  • The Many Faces of Bigfoot by David Floyd
  • Ohio Bigfoot Conference by Robert Robinson
  • Recent Cryptid Reports by Ken Gerhard
  • Lake Worth Monster  by Lyle Blackburn
And more…

Get it here!

Crypto-Kid: Nick Redfern Tonight

Colin Schneider is back with a new episode of the Crypto-Kid tonight at 8 on WCJV Radio. Tonight's guest is Nick Redfern.

"For tonight's episode, I have rescheduled Nick Redfern, author of dozens of books on UFOs, cryptozoology, and the strange. Nick and Colin will discuss the Men in Black and their involvement in cryptozoology. This is a definite not-to-miss episode!"

Listen live here.

Friday, July 14, 2017

Book Review: 365 Days of UFOs by Nick Redfern



Published in early January of this year was Nick Redfern's 365 Days of UFOs. The book is, as the subtitle says, A Year of Alien Encounters. In this book, Nick presents 365 cases of UFOs, Men and Women in Black, aliens, crop circles, and other things of that nature, an account for each day of the year.
With Nick Redfern,
at Kent Paranormal Weekend, 2017

The book is a long one, at almost 400 pages, but, for me at least, its a pretty quick read. I usually read about one month a night and some days more, so it didn't take me that long to get through it.

While some of the reports in this book are famous ones that you'd read about in most any other UFO books, there are many cases presented that haven't been written anywhere else, or that were found in declassified files from the governments of the United States and Britain. Many reports of UFOs from military installations are mentioned and many are quite interesting.

Redfern also includes reports of crop circles, shadow people, "contactees," and even odd things like the Owlman.

An interesting book, and if you're someone who likes this kind of stuff, check it out!

Wood Knocks Vol. 2 - Out Now

Available now is the 2nd volume of David Weatherly's Wood Knocks: Journal of Sasquatch Research. 

 
Contributors to this volume are:


  • Loren Coleman
  • Rosemary Ellen Guiley
  • David Weatherly
  • Christopher O'Brien
  • Richard Freeman
  • Dave Spinks
  • Jeff Stewart
  • and Eric Altman


"Wood Knocks brings together some of the brightest minds in the field of cryptozoology as they present their research on the world's most popular cryptid, Bigfoot."

Get it here.

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Roswell and Monsters - Some New Books



Some new books I got today… The Roswell UFO Conspiracy by Nick Redfern, and Monsters Among Us by Andrea McGann Keech. Both look interesting.

Expect reviews of them and some other 2017 books soon...

New Monster Reports from Lake Iliamna

The Alaska Dispatch News posted an article on June 28th about several sightings of monsters in Lake Iliamna later that month.

The relevant portion of the article follows:

"On June 19, some kids spotted an unrecognized creature the size of a large whale offshore near the town [Kakhonak]. A day or so later, others in Kakhonak also saw the creature. A village resident, Gary Nielson, gave Dillingham radio station KDLG the following account:
"'There was more than one, at least three. The first was the biggest, maybe double the size of a 32-foot gill netter. The animal either blew like a whale, or spit water from his mouth or something. The smaller animals behind him did the same but not as dramatic. They were black or very dark gray. They surfaced like whales for maybe two to three seconds about a mile off-shore. I am at a total loss as to what they could be.'
"There have been many sightings of a lake monster over the decades. This one stands out in that there were at least six adults and a number of children present. Two adults had binoculars. All agree as to what they saw."

This report is interesting because of the fact that the witness said it "blew like a whale." Many people who have seen strange animals in Lake Iliamna say they are gigantic fish, which would not do what the witness described.

Unless it was this fish...


Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Cops Concerned About Crop Cirlces



It's summer and there have apparently been quite a few crop circles appearing in fields in England this year, which has Wiltshire police concerned.

The Wiltshire Times reports that they are "urging people to report crop circle damage:"

"FARMERS and landowners across Wiltshire are being urged to report any incidents of crop circle damage that they see to the police.
"Wiltshire Police said today [July 8th] that with summer well and truly underway they have seen an increase of crop circles appearing across the country.
"A spokesperson said: 'They might seem harmless but they actually have a huge negative impact on the hardworking landowners and farmers whose crops are damaged. Creating a crop circle is criminal damage and an offense.
"'The damage caused means a loss in revenue to the farmer and landowner. They also have to deal with civil trespass issues on their land after a crop circle has been created when members of the public come without permission, to view the circle.
"'It has also been known for individuals to pose as part of a charity or as the landowner at the site of crop circles and attempt to take 'donations' from the people viewing the crop circle.'
The spokesperson added: 'We urge all farmers and landowners if they have has a crop circle on their land to report it to us on 101 so it can be recorded. Often after a crop circle appears,  individuals will arrive with a drone to photograph it. Take note of any vehicles, their registration plates, and any individuals and pass this information to the police.'
 "If a circle is created on your land make sure you tell the Crop Circle Community if you decide to allow/not allow access to the general public, and if you intend to cut the circle out.
"There are three places to do this:
"1.http://www.cropcircleaccess.com/
"2. http://www.cropcircleconnector.com/anasazi/post2004.html
"3.  http://temporarytemples.co.uk/
"'We also ask the public to help support our rural communities by reporting any suspicious vehicles, behavior or people in crop fields to police on 101 they may be attempting to create a crop circle and committing criminal damage,' the spokesperson added.
"If you can see a crop circle creation in progress, call police on 999."

Now I think its good if the police are actually going after people who go into people's fields to make crop circles, but not all of them are made that way. What about the ones that aren't?

And why would the landowners have to tell people "if they intend to cut the circle out?", which I'm assuming means harvest the field. Of course they will!

Cougar Sightings in Oregon - "It was a Big Cat"

KGW.com is reporting on sightings of a big cat in Tigard, Oregon:

"TIGARD, Ore. - Tigard police say two people reported seeing a cougar in town on Friday.
"A man told police he saw a cougar in his yard early Friday morning, and later police said they received a report of a cougar walking along a trail near Tigard Street, west of downtown.
"David Roberts saw the cougar running across the road.
"'I was like, man what are the chances of ever seeing a cougar around here? It's one of those things you don't expect to see, seeing it in town, of course there are a lot of people and businesses,' Roberts said.
"Police posted photos of the cougar on their Facebook page.
"'It was a big cat,' Roberts said. 'I even called for him and he looked right at me. Definitely a cougar.'
"Police ask anyone who sees a cougar to call dispatch at 503-629-0111."

Cougar seen by David Roberts in Tigard, Oregon
(KGW)



(KGW
 The photos definitely show a cougar. Now we will have to wait and see if there are any more sightings of it in the area in the future.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Girvan "Sea Monster" News Article

In 2015, I put up a post about a photo of a strange-looking carcass I had found in a book called Sea Monsters, in which it said that it had been found at Loch Ness. It turns out that it hadn't been, as Karl Shuker explains in my previous post

The carcass was actually found in August of 1953 at Girvan, in West Scotland, and turned out to be a dead basking shark, as many "sea monster carcasses" have.

Yesterday, while doing some research for a new book (more on it later!), I came upon a newspaper article on this certain carcass from the September 9, 1953 edition of the Sydney Morning Herald. The paper showed a photo of the carcass with the headline of "Scotland's New Sea Monster." Underneath it read:

"The decomposed remains of a sea monster which was washed ashore at Girvan, West Scotland, on August 15. The monster was 30ft long, with a 4ft neck, four stumpy legs and a 12ft tail. Inhabitants of Girvan said they had sighted the monster's mate swimming near the coast, and they spent days hunting it. The townspeople, objecting to the stench of the carcass, poured oil on it and set it alight."

An interesting tidbit, though we know it wasn't really a monster!

The only curious thing in the article was the mention of "the monster's mate." It is not stated if this was before or after the carcass was found. It could have been a basking shark, possibly the one found, or it could have been a second one.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Small Town Monsters - On the Trail of Champ

Small Town Monsters has a new mini series coming next year called On the Trail Of…
(STM)

The first(?) will be focusing on Champ, the Lake Champlain monster. They're currently doing the filming up at the lake.

"In 2018 Small Town Monsters launches their first spinoff series with 'On the Trail of…'. A yearly, documentary miniseries that tells not just the fascinating history of America's rural monsters but also goes in search of them.
"Aleksandar Petakov will direct this miniseries focusing on Lake Champlain's famous monster."


The last doc I saw on Champ, which appeared a few years ago, was crap, but with Petakov and the STM crew, you can be this one will be good.

Yet Another Big Cat Sighting in England

Another big black cat has been spotted in Hertfordshire, England, this time near Welwyn Garden City.

The Welwyn-Hatfield Times reports:

"A man and his young daughter are convinced they saw a big black cat in Welwyn Garden City and described it as being the size of an adult Labrador.
"Rob Beck, 37, of Panshanger, was on a bike ride on Sunday [July 2 - TH] with his wife and his two daughters, aged five and seven, when he spotted the large animal.
"The family were cycling from Letty Green to Cole Green Lane when they spotted the cat by Holywell Hyde.
"Rob told the Welwyn Hatfield Times: 'I was cycling with my seven-year-old by my side and my five-year-old daughter was far behind with my wife.
"'Me and my daughter saw a big cat sitting about 30 meters in front of us. It was just sitting in the middle of the path staring straight at us.
"'It was so much bigger than a normal cat and it had really big round ears, it was black, and it was the size of a fully grown Labrador.'
"Before Rob could get a picture of the cat, it walked off into the bushes on the side of the path which leads to a field.
"Rob added: 'It was pretty stupid to do looking back but we looked for this big cat for a while. We couldn't find it as there are a lot of fields in the surrounding area.
"'When I got home I went on Google to see if I could find a picture of anything like it and the closest I got were pictures of black panthers.
"'I know there have been a few sightings of a big cat around the county so I am absolutely convinced I saw a large cat and not a house pet.'
"Accounts of sightings have been happening all over the county in recent months.
"In January two Oaklands College staff members saw 'a large, sandy-colored cat' and scratch marks were found on a tree after a 'huge animal' was seen near Welwyn.
"A Wheathampstead dog-walker recently found the mutilated corpse of a muntjac deer, stripped of meat, and recently large paw prints were found in an Aldwickbury golf bunker, preserved after a night of rain.
"In early June a driver spotted an animal dart out in front of her car near Redbourn - it had 'well-defined muscles in its legs' and was a 'gingerly, sandy color', she said.
"Herts Police have received about 30 big cats reports in the last five years. They advise a safe distance is kept and any sightings are reported on 101."
I don't see why they keep saying that the dead muntjac deer was found recently. It was found on March 1st!

The reports are continuing however, and since cats of a "sandy brown" color and "black" color have been described, it seems there are at least two, if not more, still roaming the region...


(Qilinmon, Wikipedia)

Friday, July 7, 2017

"BIgfoot Expedition" in Round Rock July 15

They totally didn't copy the Expedition: Bigfoot museum name!


The Statesman has a new article up on the whole Round Rock Bigfoot thing, announcing a Bigfoot "expedition" on the 15th.

"Put on some good trail-walking shoes. Grab a flashlight. We're searching for Bigfoot.
"Round Rock's parks and recreation department is offering several walking tours through Old Settlers Park as part of its Expedition: Find Bigfoot event July 15.
"For $5, guests can take a guided tour through the park's trail system in search of the fabled Hairy Man himself. Leading the pack will be national Bigfoot researchers who can offer the best tips on find the shadowy creature.
"Four walking tours are available starting at 8 p.m., 8:15 p.m., 9:30 p.m., and 9:45 p.m. The city parks department recommends the first two for younger children and the last two for older children and adults. Register for each guided tour here
"And if Bigfoot doesn't make an appearance, the first 400 who attend still get a commemorative Bigfoot event T-shirt courtesy of the Georgetown Shirt Company.
"Also stick around for a Movie in the Park presentation of classic Bigfoot cinema with 'Harry and the Hendersons' at 9:30 p.m.
"Be careful out there. We do have video footage." 

This whole thing is just a ruse to get some people to Round Rock and apparently give the local T-shirt company some business too. In the last post I did on this, this was mentioned and it said that Bigfoot will show up. Which means a dude in a costume will probably run by, because there's no way there's a real Bigfoot there.

And its not an "expedition" if they are just taking a guided tour that will probably last 15 minutes!!

And Tom Biscardi and his "Searching for Bigfoot" is involved in the whole thing, which screams "Hoax!" since he has been involved in hoaxes multiple times, including Rick Dyer's 2008 "Dead Bigfoot" that was nothing of the sort.

This whole thing started when the Round Rock Parks and Rec. Department posted some (fake) footprint photos, and then a video of "Bigfoot," and by that time it was obvious the whole thing is fake. But they'll probably continue using it. In the last article I posted, they mentioned that there may be "Loch Ness" and "chupacaba" stories, too.

No doubt there will be more fake Bigfoot stuff from Round Rock later.

Thursday, July 6, 2017

The Strange Story of the Lake Leelanau Monster

At the end of May, I was in Michigan for about a week, and while there, I got a change to stop at Lake Leelanau. For those who don't know, the lake is (possibly) home to one of the weirdest lake monsters ever reported!

The Cryptid Wiki says of this especially-strange creature:

"This strange and brilliantly camouflaged creature is allegedly responsible for scaring one teenage angler nearly to death and has got to be one of the weirdest lake cryptids ever chronicled."

Indeed, it is.
Dr. John G. Seulzer East Leeland Memorial Park,
where I stopped at

Lake Leelanau is formed by two adjacent lakes in Leeland County, Michigan. The North lake has a max reported depth of about 120 feet, and the south lake has one of 62 feet. And the Cryptid Wiki is right when they say that "while the lakes themselves may be relatively nondescript, the creature that supposedly dwells beneath their muddy depths is anything but."

So, what does this Lake Leelanau monster look like?

In the late 1800s, a dam was built on the lake that rose the water level 10-12 feet. That is supposedly when the monster was first seen. A marsh-like area was created around the lake because of this and that is where the monster is supposed to dwell.

While the Cryptid Wiki says that there are "purportedly scores of reports of this nefarious beast," I have only heard of one, which occurred in 1910.

A young man, William Gauthier, was fishing on Lake Leelanau and had rowed to an area in the lake where there were several dead cedar trees. He got close enough to one to tie his rope around one of the branches, but when he tried to do so, he realized that the "tree" was alive!

When he put his rope not he branch, it opened its eyes! He and the mystery thing stared at each other at eye level for a few seconds before the creature dove beneath his boat.

Gauthier claimed that the beast was so long that when its head appeared on the other side of the boat, its tail was still on the side that it was one when he first noticed it!

Supposedly, Gauthier said, others had seen the thing as well, but refused to speak publicly about it.

Gauthier's great-grandson believes he saw what he said he saw, and says he did not fish on the lake for many years after the experience.
Artists drawing of the creature.
(Cryptid Wiki)

That is the only sighting of this monster with any reported detail, so there obviously haven't been any since then. And, not surprisingly, probably, I saw nothing out of the ordinary while I was there.

Does that mean the Lake Leelanau monster is gone, if it was even there in the first place? If it was just something that got trapped when the dam was built, it is most definitely dead by now. But was it the only one? What if there are still strange creatures living in Lake Leelanau, but they only look like tree trunks, like this one? Could people be going right by them and not even knowing it?

The mystery to what the Lake Leelanau monster is remains unsolved, and probably will forever.
The lake