The Centre for Fortean Zoology was founded in the UK in 1992 - nearly 20 years ago. Over the past two decades it has expanded to become a truly global organisation. We opened our American office in 2001, our Australian office in 2009, and now - in our 19th year - we are proud to welcome CFZ Canada to the CFZ global family.

Monday 7 October 2013

5 Cryptids Cooler than We Have in Canada

It strikes when residents are seeking relief from the brutal summer heat by bedding down on their roofs between midnight and 4 a.m. In May 2001, New Delhi, India became paralyzed with fear when an unidentified black monkey was reportedly terrorizing the population, causing a pregnant women to fall down a staircase and forcing two panicked men to jump off of balconies. All three died, and dozens reported scratches and bites.

The Monkey Man of India is described as about four feet tall, covered in thick black hair, with a metal helmet, metal claws, glowing red eyes and three buttons on its chest.  His local name is Kala Bandar.

The Sea Monk was an evil fish monster that looked a little like a monk. It was found off the coast of Denmark, most notably in 1546.  Historian William M Johnson noted that the sea monk bears a striking resemblance to St Francis of Assisi.

In John Stow's 'Annales', he describes the capture of one: 

"A.D. 1187. Neere unto Orforde in Suffolke, certaine Fishers of the sea tooke in their nettes a Fish having the shape of a man in all pointes, which Fish was kept by Barlemew de Glanville, Custos of the castle of Orforde, in the same castle, by the space of six monthes, and more, for a wonder: He spake not a word. All manner of meates he gladly did eate, but more greedilie raw fishe, after he had crushed out all the moisture. Oftentimes he was brought to the Church where he showed no tokens of adoration. At length, when he was not well looked to, he stale away to the sea and never after appeared."

Between 1545 and 1550, the Danish king, Christian III, sent to the Holy Roman Emperor Charles V drawings of a strange animal that had been caught in the ├śresund (the strait between the island of  Zealand, Denmark and Sweden). The animal had “a human head and face, resembling in appearance the men with shorn heads, whom we call monks because of their solitary life; but the appearance of its lower parts, bearing a coating of scales.”
More modern researchers offer more likely explanations.   The giant squid theory was popularized by writer Richard Ellis in 'The Search for the Giant Squid'.  Cryptozoologist Bernard Heuvelmans believed the report was based on the discovery of a walrus—no less cryptological, however, as it would have been out of place. More recently, it has been suggested that it was an angel shark Squatina squatina, which is commonly called monkfish, a grey seal, a hooded seal or a monk seal. 

The Beast of Busco is a legend from  the backwoods of Indiana in 1949.  Churubusco, Indiana, experienced a series of sightings of a large turtle, “the size of a dining room table,” The snapping turtle was 15 feet long and it killed a number of farm animals before it was allegedly caught. Fulk Lake, three miles out of town on Madden Road, site of the sightings, is on private property today.  It is surrounded by brushy overgrowth, hard to see from the road, and cut off from further exploration.  

The story is that a farmer spotted the animal, and called the police. They came to the scene, who devised a plan to drag it from the water with chains pulled from four Clydesdales. Eventually the chains shattered, and the turtle escaped.  Another version is that 
two men from Churubusco, Ora Blue and Charley Wilson, claim to have seen the Beast of Busco while fishing in Fulk Lake.  In the first few days of March, 1949, lake owner Gale Harris claimed to have seen the giant turtle again, and was persuaded by some townspeople to try and capture the beast.  He was nearly successful on the first day. A trap of stakes and chicken wire trapped the beast in about 10 feet of water;  a video, now lost (of course),  appeared to show the creature swimming just below the surface.   On March 7th, the Columbus City newspaper reported on the search for the beast.   The next day reporters from Fort Wayne showed up and managed to get the story out to  United Press International who sent the story across the wire. On March 9th newspapers across the nation ran the reports of this giant turtle. The Fort Wayne newspapers jokingly named the creature Oscar, perhaps after Oscar Folk the original owner of Folk Lake, and also coined the name  Beast of Busco.

Harris felt that his reputation was being questioned and began a personal quest to capture the turtle On March 12th more than 200 people traveled to his farm to watch the search and the following day bumper to bumper traffic crowded the town of Churubusco on the route to Harris’ farm  Airplanes buzzed overhead. By March 14th 3,000 people trampled across Harris’ property.  It was a media circus and  impossible to tell fact from fiction because  reporters began to make things up. Sometime in April  two Indianapolis men claimed to have captured the Beast of Busco but it didn’t take long to discover what they had was a sea turtle, purchased in an attempt to cash in on the Oscar frenzy. This sea turtle however gave someone an idea though, and it wasn’t long before a female sea turtle was brought to the lake in a fruitless attempt to lure the beast out of hiding.  Harris even used dynamite charges at one point to try to drive the thing out of his lake.

The most interesting non-Canadian cryptid may not be a cryptid at all. Bloop is the name given to an ultra-low-frequency and powerful underwater sound detected by the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in 1997. The sound's source was roughly triangulated to 50°S 100°W  (a remote point in the south Pacific Ocean west of the southern tip of South America)
The NOAA's Dr. Christopher Fox did not believe its origin was man-made or a familiar geological event such as volcanoes or earthquakes. The  audio profile of Bloop does resemble that of a living creature, but the source was a mystery because it was different from known sounds and was several times louder than a blue whale, which is the loudest recorded animal.

One suggestion is that the sound is coming from giant squid, which live at extreme depths of up to four km.  The largest dead squid on record measured about 18 metres including the length of its tentacles, but no one knows how big the creatures might grow.    Phil Lobel, a marine biologist at Boston University, doubts that giant squid are the source of Bloop.  ``Cephalopods have no gas-filled sac, so they have no way to make that type of noise,'' he said.

It is currently assumed that the sound is generated by icequakes in large icebergs, or large icebergs scraping the ocean floor. the NOAA's found and confirmed that "the frequency and time-duration characteristics of the Bloop signal are consistent, and essentially identical, to icequake signals we have recorded off Antarctica".

BUT, the deep oceans are still mostly unexplored by humans (more than 95 percent, according to the NOAA).  Conspiracy theories are abundant.,9171,127298,00.html#ixzz2h2m755h2,28804,1916160_1916151_1916134,00.html #ixzz2h2lynYIs