The thylacine, or Tasmanian tiger, was a confusing creature: Its head and body looked like a dog, yet its striped coat was cat-like. And it carried its young in a pouch, like a kangaroo. Now researchers at Brown University have determined that it was more cat than dog, although clearly a marsupial. The thylacine, which supposedly went extinct in 1936, was a solitary, ambush-style predator; it did not hunt in packs like dog-like species. Elsewhere, the question is asked: Is seeing believing — and vice versa? We believe so, yes.
One is very old but only very recently solved by Karl Shuker; the other is very new and still unsolved. Both involve a species of unusual or unexpected coloration, given its location, but neither one has previously been documented in the cryptozoological literature. And in Another Surprise Fossil Announcement, Loren Coleman discusses more fossil hominoid revisions, this one to Homo cepranensis, which it's now realized, is likely an archaic member of Homo heidelbergensis, a species which may have given rise to both Neanderthals and Homo sapiens. Also, there's a new cryptozoological TV series beginning June 5th, Animal Planet Announces FINDING BIGFOOT.
The Professor digs out Ivan T. Sanderson's Loch Morar Monster file and reviews a 1970 "Report of the Loch Morar Survey." Loch Morar is a Scottish lake not far from Loch Ness and far less populated. Those who conducted the survey found 30 reports of the monster, three of which they rejected as not-credible. Then, says the Professor, "I was surprised to find that the earliest recorded information about the whateveritwas pointed to a folkloric entity akin to a nastier-than-usual mermaid and shapeshifter." In a follow up post, Peeking at Ivan's SITU files: Loch Morar's Monster, Part Two, the Professor congratulates the report's authors for their courage at stating essentially that Mhorag--a "typical" elongated serpentine water animal with an indeterminate number of "humps" and a darkish coloration--is real. But what was it, exactly? Sanderson would not have liked the Professor's conclusion of Mhorag as a Fairyworld entity.
Two sightings of a "shape-shifting creature" took place over the Easter weekend in this South African town. What at first appeared to be a man in a black jacket, on closer inspection turned out to have no head. The man then turned into a dog that was “very angry” and “as big as a cow,” according to witnesses. A week earlier a witness described seeing a man wearing a suit that changed first into a pig and then into a bat. Someone has reportedly taken a photo of the creature, which was in human form when the photo was taken, but when the photo was developed an unknown animal showed up in the picture. Elsewhere, Jason Offutt recounts the story of a very odd, violent boy with a strange Voice in The Demon With a Boy's Face.
The question posed by Loren Coleman is a serious one. Just how accurate are eyewitness estimates of height? Have legend and myth turned Osama bin Laden and Bigfoot into giants bigger than they are or have actually been? Elsewhere, Virginia Tech science professor emeritus Henry Bauer In search of nessie, the Loch Ness Monster. Bauer believes that a family of Nessies still occupies the mile-wide, 20-mile-long lake, and it’s only a matter of time before their existence is proven. And Karl Shuker asks: Do Black Ratels And Orange Hyaenas Maketh The Nandi Bear? Shuker believes that some Nandi bear accounts may well be attributable to certain belligerent ratels that had attained a large size and had acquired a melanistic pelage due to advanced age.
Found on the seashore of Guangdong, a huge stranded mystery creature that weighs at least 10,000 pounds. A 66-year-old fisherman says he's never seen anything like it. But isn't it just a whale? Elsewhere, from Jon Downes and the folks at CFZ comes the latest video episode of On The Track (Of Unknown Animals), featuring Burrowing owls, Turkey vultures, Giant raptors, Great bustards, the Monster of Llangorse lake, and much more. Over at Mania, we have Nick Redfern delving into a little known aspect of the crop circle phenomenon in Creatures of the Crop. Also, Neil Arnold on theMothman Of Hertfordshire, and T. Peter Park on Almas vs Almasty.