South Carolina Lizard Man – New Photos

LizardMan05The crypto world has awakened from a lazy summer haze with the appearance of the Lizard Man of Lee’s County, SC. Two people claim to have taken photos of the creature and reported them to the local news station. CryptoVille investigates the twists and turns of this mysterious sighting.

According to FOX Carolina in an August 3, 2015 report, two people have reported seeing and photographing the Lizard Man, a creature famous throughout Lee County, SC. The reporter, Jeremy Turnage, doesn’t seemed too impressed with the photos, but I was still excited to see what I could deduce from the photos. (Artwork above right from the game Castlevania.)

Alas and alack, I was disappointed. Let’s set the stage.

The station first received emailed photos of the creature from Jim Wilson who was quoted as saying, “It was a tall, dark figure that had a tail and appeared to have scales. It was almost like an alligator with a short nose and long legs. I pulled over, walked down the side of the bridge and took these photos.”

He then said the creature ran across a bridge. Jim’s friend told him it was probably a pet lizard, but his girlfriend thinks it was the lizard man.

Jim’s Photos

In this photo you see a dark figure to the far right, way in the background. It looks about average height for a man, and about as big. But the creature is so far off that for all I know, it could be a Bigfoot as easily as the Lizard Man.


Next shot:  Another long distance photo and we’re able to see an arm and shoulder and the top of the head. At this point, it looks like a statue to me.


Third shot: It’s too far away to get any helpful detail from it. The more I look at it, the more it looks like a statue to me that has been posed in several positions. The figure seems stiff and if I’m not mistaken the legs remain in pretty much the same position no matter how it’s turned.


Did Jim use a camera? Or his cell phone? If he had a camera, why didn’t he zoom in on the creature? Possibly because he already knew that creature wasn’t real?

Now look at the video. I couldn’t see much of anything in it, either, but if you look to the right, way down at the end of the water,  you can see a dark figure. Barely.

FOX Carolina 21


Sarah’s Photo

Then we have the second witness named Sarah who apparently didn’t want her last name used. I’m already suspicious.

Here’s her photo:



Now I ask you, is there any way that thing could look real? Look at how lifeless the eyes are! It looks like it should be moving but there is no blur or fuzziness to indicate motion.

Ugh. I think this was definitely a hoax. But why? And why now?

Bishopville, SC

I had a hunch. Someone wanted to draw attention to the area of Bishopville, SC. But why? I found out some interesting facts.

According to Sperling’s website, the median household income in the area is $16,103. Isn’t that below poverty level? Then this, 46.58% of the population makes less than $15,000 a year.  Their sales tax is 8.0% and their state income tax is 7.0%! Compare that to the national average of 6.0% sales tax and 4.72% state income tax. The people in that area are poor and overtaxed.

What I think IS clear in this story is that these people need better paying jobs and lots of them.

So what does this have to do with the Lizard Man? Stirring up attention about this cryptid creature could easily draw in lots of tourists with money to spend. Just what an impoverished area needs.

LizardManShirtI tried to find out who Jim Wilson is. I only found one Jim Wilson in that area and guess what? He’s on the local Chamber of Commerce. He works with other business people trying to create economic opportunities for themselves and the entire areas they serve.

This may not be the same Jim Wilson quoted in the article, but I found out another tantalizing clue. There is a James Wilson who runs a program trying to get jobs for people coming out of jail. The idea is to get them gainfully employed and help them give-up lives of crime.

But in this economy where huge numbers of people are suffering unemployment, how much less likely is there to be a quick job growth spurt in little Bishopville, SC?

Get Searching

What I hope happens is that every cryptozoology TV program gets their crews down there and starts looking for this thing! There is a long history of sightings in the area and you know what they say – where there’s smoke, there’s fire!

I think this latest series of photos we’ve just seen are 100% hoaxes, spawned by a desperate attempt to prop up the economy in that impoverished area.

But look at the swampy area in the photos and the video. Something may be lurking out there and wouldn’t  it be fun to see what the TV programs are able to find?

What do you think about all this?


Charlie Charlie Challenge: When the “News” is a Lie

CCChallenge01In May of this year, an extremely popular hoax was perpetrated on young people through disreputable social media venues. It was called the Charlie Charlie Challenge and claimed to summon a Mexican demon. There were reports that some people died. We’ll go over how this hoax was done and how to avoid this junk in the future.

What was the Charlie Charlie Challenge?

I’m not going to repeat what this idiocy was as the kids will all know about it. Suffice to say, you speak some kind of chant and it’s supposed to summon a Mexican demon.

It’s a complete hoax. But that didn’t stop fake “news sites” from “reporting” on it saying various teenagers died while performing the summons, others said they were brutally attacked by the demon.

In an article on Doubtful News, writer Sharon Hill (who goes by “idoubtit” on her site) recounts several false reports that she found on various fraudulent news sites. The link to her full article can be found in the References section below.

Hill shares one quote that almost made me laugh out loud, “According to reports, nearly 500 people across the United States have died within six days of playing the challenge.”

And yet somehow all the major news stations managed to miss this story. That’s your first clue.

demonCryptoVille’s Commitment

I’m sharing this news with you because I find these scenarios so frustrating. I would love to see sites like these eradicated through a failure to attract readers.  It takes me so much time to look for legitimate sources for the articles I write and to do as much fact-checking as I know how to do on the internet, that when stories like these come up and go viral, it’s really discouraging.

All I can do is assure you I do my best to get the legitimate facts and opinions on the various cryptid topics I cover and tell you the truth to the best of my knowledge.

How to Detect Bogus News Sites

Here’s a quick checklist to determine if you’re reading a real news report or a bogus site:

  • If it’s so incredible, why haven’t they shared it with the local news station to be properly investigated and reported?
  • Is there an author associated with their report?
  • Does it give a date when it was published?
  • Are the details consistent with the type of story being reported? For instance, it’s easy to tell when someone is lying about a Bigfoot sighting because details will be either obscure or unrealistic, based on the what is known about Bigfoot behavior.
  • What happens if you try to copy their photos from the article – does it let you? If not, that’s a good indication that what they’re showing is fake.

SlipperySlopeAnother clue that I use is, if the webpage takes forever to load due to the 4,000 ads they have plastered all over it, I have to think they will say anything to get you to that page so you can look at their lousy ads.

Protect yourself and your kids by fostering a healthy dose of skepticism.

Cautionary Quote

“If you tell a big enough lie and tell it frequently enough, it will be believed.”
― Adolf Hitler





Dire Wolf – Is This a Carcass?

Dire Wolf (Canis dirus) (left) and Smilodon (Sabertooth Tiger) at La Brea Tar Pits, California.

Dire Wolf (Canis dirus) (left) and Smilodon (Sabertooth Tiger) at La Brea Tar Pits, California.

A follower of CryptoVille shared some photos of what she thought was the carcass of a Dire Wolf. The only problem is that science believes that Dire Wolves are extinct nowadays, so this presents quite a puzzle. Let’s see what we can determine.

One of CryptoVille’s Facebook followers shared a couple photos with me last year. I only got around to investigating it now even though I’ve been thinking about it all this time. I tried to find the name of the woman who shared it with me but for reasons known only to Facebook, I can’t find the old post. My apologies to her.

Anyway, to the photos. The photo of the skeleton is in a museum somewhere, but it provides a good reference especially in the snout area.


Let’s look at the carcass itself. My first thought was this it resembled something out of a fantasy movie – made by imagineers.


When animals die in the wild (actually, anywhere), their bodies become dehydrated and begin to break down and decay even if they’re frozen.  So who knows how old this carcass is or how long it’s been decaying naturally.  All these factors will impact the appearance of the carcass.

While the photo we have is fairly clear, it’s at a distance which means we can’t see any important detail. What really needs to happen is a scientist has to get a DNA sample and test it.

The Verdict

As it stands, we can’t say whether this is a real carcass of a species living today or of an extinct one. There is also the possibility that it is a hoax.

Because the circumstances surrounding this carcass are so mysterious and vague, I’m going to have to think it’s a hoax. Until someone comes up with more information that can be checked, like a DNA sample, that’s the best we can do.

What do you think about the “Dire Wolf” carcass?


The Centipede from Hell

CentipedeFromHell02Science presents us with yet another nightmarish creature which haunts the depths of the deep blue sea! This time it’s small by comparison but still impressive. In addition to being quite creepy looking, it’s quite deadly for the creatures it preys upon. Take a look at the latest monster from the deep!

The area around Croatia hosts submarine caves that are among the deepest in the world. Scientists are only beginning to investigate these dangerous abodes and to search for what might live there.

CentipedeFromHell03Enter the centipede from hell (top right), dubbed Geophilus hadesi after the god of the underworld, Hades.  Living 3,500 feet below the ocean surface, this creepy crawly has plenty of adaptations to survive in its perilous environment. (View of the cave, left.)

According to scientist Pavel Stoev who works for the National Museum of Natural History in Sofia, “When I first saw the animal and its striking appearance, I immediately realized that this is a new, hitherto unnamed and highly-adapted-to-cave-environment species. This finding comes to prove once again how little we know about the life in caves, where even in the best prospected areas, one can still find incredible animals.”

CroatiaMapCreepy Adaptations

Geophilus hadesi is only about an inch long, but its antennas are five times the length of its head which is an unusual proportion in the bug world. Add to that 33 long leg claws which look lethal, and you have a pretty gruesome beastie.  Just to be sure this creepy crawly can obliterate its unfortunate prey, G. hadesi also sports strong jaws with poison glands. Lovely.

Stoev and his colleagues expect to find a lot of unusual and exciting creatures lurking in these deep caves, many of which will probably be new to science.

I wish them luck!

Would you want to dive in these mysterious caves?


Did Leif Erikson Really Find Bigfoot?

VikingsBigfoot04Plots don’t get more twisted and convoluted than this one! Did legendary explorer Leif Erikson encounter Bigfoot on his voyage to the New World? Many sources say so. One scholar casts some doubts so CryptoVille investigates – the Truth!

I stumbled across a very interesting and provocative article the other day that I wanted to share with you. I will be quoting from it extensively throughout this post. The article, found on the Skeptical Humanities website, is called For the Love of Yeti, Bigfooters, Read a Primary Source!

The author is Eve Siebert. Who is she? A graduate of Saint Louis University who holds a Ph.D. in English Literature. Her specialty is Old and Middle English literature, but she also has “secondary concentrations” in Old Norse and Shakespeare.  The specialty in Old Norse literature is the key component for today’s analysis.

VikingsBigfoot01What Passes for Canon

How many times have we read about the earliest sighting of Bigfoot attributed to Leif Erikson during his historic voyage to the New World? You don’t see it a lot, but it’s out there often enough and has become part of the canon of Bigfoot lore.

We may have been duped. I’m not suggesting anyone intentionally tried to dupe us, but let’s just say their research was fraught with problems.

To Date or Not To Date

Siebert begins her article recalling how a TV program “Ancient Mysteries: Bigfoot” retold the tale of Erickson encountering Bigfoot in 986. She points out that the year 986 is always mentioned in these accounts but she never found the source for that error.  And it’s a big error because as it turns out, Leif Erikson wasn’t born yet in 986 and his father hadn’t yet settled in Greenland. We have to remember the Vikings traveled from Iceland to Greenland and then finally to Vinland in the New World.

Another important factor is the fact the Vikings didn’t write in journals. They only had a runic alphabet, and as Siebert points out they were unlikely to bring large boulders with them on the ship just to tap out the day’s events. The sagas weren’t written until centuries afterward.

VikingsBigfoot02Saga Synopsis

In Siebert’s article we learn that two sagas refer to the Norse discovery of America:

Greenlander’s Saga: Leif’s voyage to the New World is mentioned briefly. All he seems to find of significance are grapes and vines so he names the new land Vinland. It’s reported that Leif sees salmon that were quite large.

Saga of Eric the Red: Again, Leif’s voyage to the New World is briefly mentioned and it recalls  his discovery of Vinland and how he named it. Nothing about animals or creatures in this text.

Nothing about Bigfoot sightings, footprints, growls, odors, or anything. Hmm.

Other References

Author Siebert shares a few other references in books and blogs where this erroneous information is put forth as historical fact, and sometimes embellished. She recalls how the Vikings are referred to in one article as Berserkers and they were nothing of the kind. Though they had a history of being raiders as we know them stereotypically, in this case, Leif and his crew were explorers.

The misunderstandings and misinterpretations seem to take on a life of their own.

VikingsBigfoot03What is the Truth?

Siebert believes the misunderstanding stems from Peter Byrne’s book, The Search for Big Foot: Monster, Myth or Man? In his book, Byrne draws from Samuel Eliot Morison’s book The European Discovery of America: The Northern Voyages, A.D. 500-1600. Ironically, Morison never mentioned Bigfoot in his text.

So what happened?

It seems that Byrne misunderstood the word “skellring.” He said it means barbarian but then asks, why did the Norse describe them as hairy? Byrne figures it was because they were Bigfoots – a lot hairier than humans in any era.

In Morison’s account, he describes the Skrellings (proper spelling) the Norse found in the New World as horribly ugly, hairy, swarthy, with great black eyes. But in his account, he’s describing the natives, not another bipedal hominid.  Furthermore, Morison never recounts any encounters between Leif and any sort of animal whatsoever.

Siebert sums it up this way, “So how did humans become Bigfoot? Well, first Morison retold the sagas in a slightly odd way. Byrne seized on one word and ignored everything else Morison said, while making several mistakes. Others have dismissed Byrne’s reservations but repeated his mistakes, while adding their own (anyone who uses the word “Skellring” has clearly gotten their information from Byrne, either directly or indirectly). The same mistakes get repeated religiously until they become established fact. And no one, not even Byrne, bothers to look at the actual sagas.

Oh brother. There is a lot of truth in this for people like me who love cryptozoology, who hunt the internet trying to gather facts and information to share with my readers about the monsters we love, and who can inadvertently fall prey to misinformation.

LessonsLearnedLessons Learned

I think I’ve said this to my readers before – we all must be careful what we read on the internet and we should vet the sources.  Are the writers qualified?

I promise you, I do try to get to the bottom of the topics in my articles and find the absolute truth. I most always seek scientific documents because I believe science is the key to understanding our natural (and cryptid) world.

I think the best thing we can do is proceed with prudence and a healthy dose of skepticism.

I’m glad to know the truth about Leif Erikson and the story of his seeing Bigfoot in America. But this doesn’t mean Bigfoot doesn’t exist, it just means Leif didn’t see it/them as far as anyone knows.  And that’s fine. We’ve currently got plenty of sightings and clues pointing to the existence of this creature today and that’s really exciting!

If you’ve read my Bigfoot articles, you’ll know I believe!

So what do you think about all this?






Mogollon Monster of Arizona

Mogollon01I stumbled upon another strange creature lurking in the American West – this time in Arizona’s mountain region. It’s called the Mogollon Monster. Researchers make the case it’s another Bigfoot based on eyewitness reports and evidence gathered in the wild. Is this creature bringing us closer to the truth about Bigfoot, or is it just another disappointment? CryptoVille investigates!

Facts about this creature are about as rare as the monster itself! I struggled to find what I felt was some solid information about this beast. The few accounts I did find all seemed to regurgitate the  description found on Wikipedia. (Unknown Artist’s rendition above right.)

That said, if you are new to this creature, I’ll present the basic description here, based on Wiki’s explanation then give you my humble opinion.

What is a Mogollon Monster?

The Mogollon (pronounced something like mo-gee-ohn) Monster is named for the area of Arizona where it’s seen, the Mogollon Rim. This rim sits atop a mountain range and seems like a Bigfoot-friendly environment with its Ponderosa forests and Pinyon-Juniper woodlands.

MogollonMonster04Witnesses describe this creature as bipedal and covered with hair everywhere but on the face, hands, feet, and chest. They report that the hair is “black or reddish brown,” and that it’s long.  The beast stands around 7 feet tall and has large eyes often said to be red. It also smells terrible, not unlike its other Bigfoot cousins. (Artwork left by Scott Davis.)

Reports state that the creature is highly territorial and can, at times, be quite violent. They seem to be nocturnal and like many apex predators, seem to be omnivorous.

People report that the creature walks with huge strides, swinging its arms, and can mimic animal calls such as those of  birds and coyotes. They whistle in the forests and researchers have found nests they attribute to this beast, made out of “pine needles, twigs, and leaves.”

People claim the monster has raided their campsites looking for food, and that they have had stones thrown at them from the forest. A few people have reported hearing a terrible cry coming from the woods, sounding like “a woman in ‘great distress’.”

(Photo right of the Mogollon Rim.)

MogollonRimViewHWWitness Accounts

Wiki shares the following reports with us:

In a 1903 edition of The Arizona Republican, someone named I.W. Stevens reported seeing the creature near the Grand Canyon. “[It had] long white hair and matted beard that reached to his knees. It wore no clothing, and upon his talon-like fingers were claws at least two inches long.” He apparently got closer to it and reported, “Upon further inspection he noted ‘a coat of gray hair nearly covered his body, with here and there a spot of dirty skin showing.” He saw the creature drinking the blood from two felled cougars and when it saw him, it picked up a club and screamed at him.

Don Davis, who went on to become a cryptozoologist, saw the creature in the mid-1940s during a Boy Scout trip. He said, “The creature was huge. Its eyes were deep set and hard to see, but they seemed expressionless. His face seemed pretty much devoid of hair, but there seemed to be hair along the sides of his face. His chest, shoulders, and arms were massive, especially the upper arms; easily upwards of 6 inches in diameter, perhaps much, much more . I could see he was pretty hairy, but didn’t observe really how thick the body hair was. The face/head was very square; square sides and squared up chin, like a box.”

Mogollon03The Native American people living in that area, the White Mountain Apache Nation, have had encounters as well. In 2006, Collette Altaha said, “We’re not prone to easily talk to outsiders, but there have been more sightings than ever before. It cannot be ignored any longer.” Marjorie Grimes, a resident of nearby Whiteriver, said, “It was all black and it was tall! The way it walked; it was taking big strides. I put on the brakes and raced back and looked between the two trees where it was, and it was gone!”

Tribal police lieutenant Ray Burnette said, “A couple of times they’ve seen this creature looking through the windows. They’re scared when they call. The calls we’re getting from people – they weren’t hallucinating, they weren’t drunks, they weren’t people that we know can make hoax calls. They’re from real citizens of the Fort Apache Indian Reservation.”

There are some Native American legends that deal with this creature. Here’s a synopsis of those:

  1. A prehistoric tribe exiled their chief. Angry, he prayed to his spirits to transform him into a “hirsute bogeyman” in order to scare his rebellious tribe. He still lives today, defending his territory.
  2. A rival stole the chief’s wife, so to get his revenge, the chief had the medicine man transform the thief into the horrible creature.
  3. Some Indians attacked a pioneer who managed to get away into the woods where he went insane and was cursed by the spirits. (Presumably turning into the Mogollon Monster.)
  4. A white man murdered an Indian woman. He was punished by being “hung from a tree by his hands, stretched to a height of eight feet, then skinned alive, and left to die.” (This according to the Weird US) He continues to roam the woods, presumably as the Mogollon Monster.

Mogollon04Ongoing Research

From what I can tell the ongoing research into this creature’s existence seems pretty sparse. One man who was trying to get the research going was Mitchell Waite (photo right). Unfortunately, he passed away earlier this year. Hopefully his partner Susan Farns will continue with their efforts. The link to their website is in my reference section, Mogollon Monster.

The BFRO website lists a bunch of sightings around Arizona. If you want to check those out, the link is in my references section below.

More Recent Sightings

According to the website Cryptozoology News, a young woman was hiking the Canyon Point trail around New Years of last year when she had her sighting of the creature. Her name is Y. Estevez and she said, “It was on its knees, drinking water, when I found it. Drinking, making noises like a pig, so at first sight the animal looked like a pig to me.”

Mogollon Rim Visitor Center OverlookShe further explained that she liked to take pictures of all the animals she encounters when she’s hiking so she pulled out her camera to get some shots of this pig-thing. She said, “I figured it was just a pig … kind of hairy though, which seemed a little odd for a hog. As soon as I made a little noise, the animal turned its head and looked directly at me. Now that’s when I freaked out. It was staring at me.” (Photo above left from Mogollon Rim Visitor Center.)

Trying to scare off the animal, she began to make noise and wave her arms about trying to appear larger than she was. “The creature gets off its four legs and stands on its hind legs. It had long hair, grey and bluish, and I swear it looked like one of those trolls from a fairy tale. Ugly stuff. The face was human looking, no hair on it, but full of bumps. The eyes were kind of a brown-red. Thick big nose, small lips. No expression on its face at all. It then took off running like a person.”

News Report

At Halloween of last year, Fox10Phoenix interviewed Mitchell Waite for nearly five minutes. It’s interesting and I have to give kudos to the news team for reporting the story intelligently without the usual giggles and winks that drive me crazy.

Here’s that video:


What To Make of All This

The fact that the living Native Americans see and experience this creature to the point where they call their police department tells me something is happening in that area. I thought the report by hiker Y. Estevez was very compelling too – her report sounds genuine and believable.

I perused the photos on the Mogollon Monster site and while they’re interesting, they are all still too blurry and poorly defined to ever convince the scientific community. If it won’t convince the scientific community at large, then it’s useless.

It seems very possible that we have another Bigfoot relative calling this area home, at least some parts of the year. But as always, it’s going to take some serious and sustained research to get the evidence we need – clear, indisputable evidence.

What do you think about this creature?

Fun Fact:  Artist Trent Penrod of Pinetop’s Burly Bear mountain gift shop has used a chainsaw to sculpt five statues of the infamous Mogollon Monster. Five towns along the Mogollon Rim put one of the sculptures on their Main Streets to acknowledge and celebrate the local legend. (See photo below, taken by the artist himself.)



Remember the Night Crawler from the Fact or Faked Show?

NightCrawler01Video analyst and debunker Phil Poling, known through his channel on YouTube, ParaBreakdown, thinks he has solved the mysterious case of the Night Crawler seen on the TV show Fact or Faked. Does his analysis pass the test? Or could there still be more to this story than meets the eye?

I was a big fan of the TV show Fact or Faked because I appreciated the fact they tried to get to the bottom of some mysterious video phenomena. Many times they were able to debunk things, and other times, they were unsuccessful. But at least they tried. (Photo above right taken from their video, with an added arrow.)

Unsolved Mystery

The case of the Night Crawler of Fresno, CA was one of the unsolved mysteries. When you watch the video, it shows two bizarre figures that seem to be walking on stilts through a man’s yard late one night. His dogs would go crazy around the same time each night so he put up security cameras to try and record what was happening in his yard.

NightCrawler02The video we saw on Fact or Faked was from that security camera which also means it was poor quality, very grainy, and poorly lit (See part of that segment left). Still, my first thought upon seeing it was that this video shows the stupidest hoax I’d seen in a long time and I was astonished when the team chose that video as one of the two they were going to investigate. I would have left it on the cutting room floor.

Their efforts were interesting but I remember being most impressed with the interview they did with the homeowner. He only spoke Spanish so Jael de Pardo was able to fill in as translator. I thought the man’s body language and facial expressions were telling – he genuinely seemed afraid by these nightly occurrences.

It could be that someone was hoaxing him and he just didn’t know it. But it sure was strange. Honestly, my crypto-loving little brain has been mulling over this episode of Fact or Faked ever since. I was even thinking of doing some research to see if there had been anymore sightings of these dopey stilted creatures anywhere else.

ParaBreakdown’s Opinion

PhilPolingThen along comes Phil Poling (photo right) and his analysis on ParaBreakdown.  Phil seems to be an expert in video analysis and I always appreciate that in his reviews on any cryptozoological topic. He explains why the video quality is such a mess – if you can believe it was actually made worse by some well-intentioned individuals.

Phil set about imitating the creature in the film in his own backyard. The truth is, he did a pretty good job. It’s not exactly like we saw in the original video, but it’s pretty close.

Here’s that 8 minute video:



One commentator below his video mentioned that he hadn’t accounted for shadows and things that were found in the original video. I think more to the point was the fact he got the look of and the action of the “Nightcrawler” pretty accurately.

Another ParaBreakdown commentator said that just because he (Phil) could reproduce what was shown in the video doesn’t mean that the entity isn’t real. I guess that’s true to a certain extent. I would believe it more if we were looking at a strange Bigfoot video because in my mind there is so much evidence pointing to the fact that this creature actually does exist. So if someone makes a lousy video of one it certainly doesn’t mean that Bigfoot isn’t real – at least in my opinion.

However, there aren’t that many Nightcrawler videos or stories, to my knowledge. The fact that this thing just looks so unreal probably points to the fact that it is not.

So what do you think about the “Nightcrawler” and Phil Poling’s analysis? Do you believe?


The photo below shows a sculpture in wood purportedly showing a Nightcrawler. However, no one knows where these statues stand. There are several of them.

Do you know where these things are? Please share below if you do (or email me).




Cutest Cryptid Ever! Meet the New Octopus

Normally cryptozoology describes big, fierce, and intimidating monsters. Not this time! Science is struggling to come up with a name for this very cute little octopus – another wonder from the deep dark ocean that was recently found! Have a look!

Scientist Stephanie Bush of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) has been studying this very cute and elusive little octopus. She was so struck by its sweetness that she’s tempted to name it Opistoteuthis adorabilis. So far she has established that it belongs to the Opistoteuthis family of octopi, but is still categorizing it further.

In the 1990s other scientists found samples of this animal but didn’t find a live specimen until recently. Because this is such a deep sea creature, the requirements to sustain its life are tricky.

That’s where the aquarium part of this organization comes in. They’ve created a wonderful environment for this little cutie that mimics conditions far below the ocean’s surface. It seems to be thriving, so much so, that it thought the environment safe enough to lay some eggs!

Scientists have gathered the eggs for safe-keeping and anticipate the day when they eventually hatch. Until then, Stephanie has her hands full studying the live specimen.

Check out the video from MBARI, a little over five minutes long:





Two New Species of Horny Marsupials Found in Australia

AntechinusMainland01Has evolution gone mad, or is something else destroying these strange little marsupials native to Australia? It seems they engage in mating behavior until they literally drop dead! CryptoVille had to investigate this one because though they aren’t technically cryptids, their behavior is definitely strange!

The good news is that Australian scientists have discovered two “new” tiny marsupial species of antechinus. The bad news is that these carnivorous little guys go mad when mating season rolls around.  They fiercely compete with other males for females then go into a mating frenzy for such an extended time that they eventually die from the effort. (Photo above right shows Mainland Dusky Antechinus.)

The two news species of marsupials found are the Tasman Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus vandycki) which lives in a remote area of Tasmania, and the Mainland Dusky Antechinus (Antechinus swainsonii mimetes) which lives in eastern Australia. The Tasman Dusky Antechinus averages 5 inches long and weighs about 3 ounces. The Mainland Dusky Antechinus, the largest antechinus in this family, weighs just under a pound and can reach nearly 4 feet long (which must include the tail).

YowieVsBigfootAndrew Baker, the lead researcher in the study says, “Uncovering new mammals in developed countries like Australia is pretty rare and the fact we’ve found even more antechinus species hints at the biodiversity jewels still waiting to be unearthed.”  (Wait until they find the Yowie! :) )

Baker adds, “The breeding period is basically two to three weeks of speed-mating, with testosterone-fueled males coupling with as many females as possible, for up to 14 hours at a time. Ultimately, the testosterone triggers a malfunction in the stress hormone shut-off switch; the resulting rise in stress hormones causes the males’ immune systems to collapse and they all drop dead before the females give birth to a single baby.”

I know “love hurts,” but this is crazy! This must be the reason why at least one of the species is on the endangered list, right? They lose half their population every year!

LoveHurtsNazarethGuess again.

Scientists tell us that halving the population every year ensures that the mother antechinuses will be able to find enough spiders and insects to feed their offspring.

So how is it that they’re endangered, then? Turns out their habitats are being decimated by you know who.

AntechinusTasman01According to Baker, “Most of its [Tasman Peninsula Dusky antechinus pictured left] limited habitat falls within state forest, which is being logged. This species now apparently only lives in tiny, fragmented stands of intact forest that are under threat. It’s a shame that mere moments after discovery, these little Tasmanian marsupials are threatened with extinction at human hands.”

The scientists’ goal is to have these animals added to the roster of Australia’s federal threatened species list. That may help them survive.

The Mainland Dusky Antechinus is listed on the Least Concerned list, which means it isn’t endangered. At the moment.

Seriously, they think we’re crazy for believing in Bigfoot, and yet look at the weirdness Mother Nature throws our way!

Til the next time!


NASA’s Saucer Shaped Craft!

nasa-flying-saucerUFO Hunters be advised that now NASA is launching saucer-shaped craft of their own! What could it mean for the future of space travel? What will it do to the search for UFOs? CryptoVille ponders this latest development!

NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory explained the reason for creating enlarged, disc shaped craft (artist’s rendition right) this way, “As NASA plans ambitious robotic science missions to Mars, laying the groundwork for even more complex human expeditions to come, the spacecraft needed to land safely on the Red Planet’s surface will become larger and heavier in order to accommodate explorer’s extended stays on the Martian surface.”

The launch, originally planned for today has been postponed until Thursday (today) due to high wave conditions in the planned landing zone in the Pacific ocean. When it does launch, the Low-Density Supersonic Decelerator  will take-off from Hawaii’s U.S. Navy Pacific Missile Range Facility in Kauai whereupon a huge high-altitude weather balloon will carry it into the stratosphere.

Once aloft the balloon and vehicle will disconnect at 120,000 feet. Then the vehicle will accelerate to three (or four – I’ve read conflicting reports) times the speed of sound until it reaches its goal of approximately 34 miles (180000 feet) above the Earth’s surface. From there an airbag will inflate around the saucer and a huge parachute will deploy, both aimed at slowing down the vehicle as it lands in the Pacific Ocean. NASA plans to retrieve the vehicle and its data from the ocean.

This vehicle is considered roomy by space craft standards and will easily haul much needed equipment, supplies, and crew to all the Martian expeditions. The trick is getting it to land on Mars safely.

mars-memes-curisoity-martianThe Problem with Mars

Mars’ atmosphere is much thinner than ours and that makes landing gently problematic. It’s hoped that by using a new parachute technology called the Supersonic Ringsail Parachute, gentle, safe landings will become a reality.

NASA stated, “We want to see if the chute can successfully deploy and decelerate the test vehicle while it is in supersonic flight.”

This current saucer-shaped vehicle is 15 feet wide, weighs 6,808 pounds (3,088 Kg) and the parachute (the largest ever used) is 100 feet (30 m) in diameter.

UFO Complications

It isn’t enough that we’re dealing with drones all over the place now, and remotely operated vehicles, now we’re going to be seeing even stranger weather balloons, huge parachutes, and good grief – saucer-shaped craft in the skies! Further complicating the search for a genuine ET is all the Earth science that we know about and some that hasn’t yet been discovered, especially of the electromagnetic variety.

RED HERRINGWhat’s a UFO hunter to do? I guess it pays to be prudent. When we see things in the sky and elsewhere, give it an honest assessment. Could it possibly be something else? If so, err on that possibility.

By weeding out these “red herrings” we’ll be closer to finding the true ETs and their flying  machines.

As for humanity and our ability to travel into space, this is a great achievement on NASA’s part. We have to lose those stupid tubular rockets and create craft that are more Star Trek-worthy. That’s the only way we can safely “go where no one has gone before.”

What do you think about NASA’s new craft?


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