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Cryptozoology

10 Weird and Wonderful Cryptozoology-linked Locations in Britain

10 Weird and Wonderful Cryptozoology-linked Locations in Britain  98

Anyone with an interest in cryptozoology – the investigation and study of mystery animals – will find more than enough to interest them wherever they travel in Britain, as revealed by the following selection of fascinating examples.

Dr. Karl Shuker is a zoologist who is internationally recognised as a world expert in cryptozoology (the scientific investigation of mystery animals whose existence or identity has yet to be formally ascertained), as well as in animal mythology and allied subjects relating to wildlife anomalies and inexplicabilia. You can purchase his work here.

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These strange unproven creatures haunt various areas of the UK.

Exmoor

For decades, sightings of big black panther-like or brown puma-like cats have been filed all over Britain, but the most famous is the Beast of Exmoor, reported since the early 1980s from this huge moorland overlapping Devon and Somerset, and blamed for many sheep kills. Similar Westcountry-based reports have also been filed from Dartmoor and Bodmin, but if there are big cats here, escaped/released from captivity, they continue to elude capture. Wild but beautiful locations well worth a visit.

Mawnan Old Church

Since the 1970s, the woods surrounding the old church in the Cornish village of Mawnan have been the scene of several alleged sightings of a bizarre feathered flying entity nicknamed the owlman. For although it resembles an owl, it is as tall as a man and stands upright. Zoologists speculate that it may be an escapee European eagle owl, but eyewitnesses have discounted this. A dark, mysterious, and not a little eerie place.

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10 Weird and Wonderful Cryptozoology-linked Locations in Britain  101

Exmoor and Cannock Chase

Images by Matt Neale & Brian Taylor

Falmouth Bay

A very large, long-necked sea monster reminiscent of Nessie and nicknamed Morgawr has been reported from Falmouth Bay, Cornwall, by a number of eyewitnesses since the 1970s, and is even depicted in two controversial photographs snapped by the equally mysterious, anonymous ‘Mary F’.

Cannock Chase

This extremely large expanse of woodland around Cannock, Staffordshire, is reputedly home to a wide variety of cryptozoological mysteries, including big cats, a pool-inhabiting crocodile, some troll-like or bigfoot-like humanoid entities, phantom black dogs, and even a werewolf! Don’t stay here alone overnight!

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Bala Lake (=Llyn Tegid)

Scotland has Nessie, but Wales has Teggie, the monster of Bala Lake. In a famous 1995 sighting, two tourists were astonished to see a head and a 3-m-long neck rise up above the water surface, and when a Japanese television crew arrived they obtained an unidentified sonar trace of something very big moving swiftly below the water surface. So be careful when paddling here!

Renwick

In the church at Renwick, Cumbria, is an account describing how, back in 1733, when this church’s predecessor was being demolished, a gigantic bat-like creature with scaly body but leathery wings, resembling the fabled cockatrice dragon, supposedly flew out of the foundations and terrorised the Renwick inhabitants until slain by local man John Tallantine (or Tallantine), using a lance hewn from the magic-imbued rowan tree. Yet even today, people claim to have seen it flying at night here.

Bala Lake, home of the Teggie.

Photo via Hefin Owen

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Benebecula

Photo via Robbie Shade

Loch Ness

Undoubtedly the most famous cryptozoology-associated locality in Britain, Loch Ness’s alleged monster Nessie has been reported for centuries, but predominantly since a road alongside the loch was opened in 1933. Purported evidence includes sonar traces, photo, and eyewitness reports. Many identities for this elusive water beast have been proposed, from a prehistoric plesiosaur or a long-necked seal to a huge sturgeon or a gigantic eel, but Nessie is still keeping her secret. Take your binoculars – and a camera!

Benbecula

During the 1830s, a supposed mermaid appeared off the coast of the Outer Hebridean island of Benbecula, where some people were cutting seaweed. A boy hurled a stone at this entity, killing it, and its corpse was later washed ashore. It was then given a formal funeral, even buried in a shroud and coffin, because everyone who had looked at the body was convinced that it really was a mermaid – combining the black-haired head and upper body of a young girl with the scaleless lower body and tail of a fish. A windswept but magical isle.

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Dobhar-chú

The dobhar-chú is an aquatic Irish mystery beast said to resemble a huge otter. One allegedly killed a woman called Grace Connolly in September 1722 after emerging from in County Leitrim’s Glenade Lake. Her grave is in Conwall Cemetery, in the townland of Drummans, and its stone bears a carving representing the dobhar-chú. A similar beast was sighted much more recently, in May 1968, near Sraheens Lough on County Mayo’s Achill Island. Irish blarney, or more than a myth?

Lough Dubh

One day in March 1962, schoolteacher Alphonsus Mullaney and his son were fishing in Lough Dubh (‘Black Lake’) in County Galway when something big pulled on their line. It proved to be a monstrous beast as big as a cow with short thick legs, small ears, dark grey skin covered in short bristles, and a large hippopotamus-like face – with a sharp rhinoceros-like horn on the end of its snout! The two men fled in terror, but when they returned in the company of some others, the monster had gone – definitely the one that got away!

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Cryptozoology

Scientist finds polar bear DNA in Bigfoot

Scientist finds polar bear DNA in Bigfoot 117

British scientists examined yeti DNA and found a strong similarity to polar bear DNA. For analysis, they took the wool of a creature that was killed by a hunter in the Himalayas 30 years ago.

Brian Sykes, a geneticist at the University of Oxford, examined the DNA of the Bigfoot Yeti and found similarities to the DNA of a polar bear, according to Daily Star.

For analysis, Sykes took the wool of a creature killed by a hunter in the Himalayas 30 years ago, from which they made a stuffed animal. The result showed a match with the DNA of an ancient polar bear that became extinct at least 40,000 years ago. The geneticist suggests that the Yeti is a hybrid of a brown bear and a polar bear that arrived in the mountain range from the Arctic north many years ago. For this reason, it behaves differently from an animal of this species.

Now the professor wants to obtain samples of Bigfoot hair from all over the world in order to subject them to the most difficult DNA tests and continue research in this direction.

In 2019, the FBI released documents revealing the results of analysis of hair and biologic tissue allegedly belonging to Bigfoot. The samples were sent in 1976 by yeti hunter Peter Byrne. Research results showed that they belonged to a deer.

Bigfoot is a large humanoid creature from modern folklore, which is believed to live in forest or mountain areas that are inaccessible to humans. It is believed that it is an ancient hominid that has survived to our time, but scientists are skeptical about the likelihood of its existence. In particular, all cases of its observation or possible traces are explained by hoax or mistaken recognition of animal tracks.

When was the last time a Bigfoot was seen?

In 2020, the appearance of Bigfoot was noted in Australia, the relic forests of Canada, in the west of the USA, in the north of Scandinavia.

In the spurs of the Himalayas, wild hairy people of small stature were seen, resembling a Flores man (fossil dwarf species of people. Also known as the “hobbit” by analogy with the creatures invented by J. Tolkien. – Ed.).

In October, locals informed that in the jungle of Africa, in the Congo region, there is an upright creature similar to a Yeti.

Traces of Bigfoot, his refuge are regularly found in Komi. Yeti visits have recently been reported from eyewitnesses from the Karelian Isthmus and the border zone near Vyborg, where there are dungeons and a huge bunker near an abandoned military airfield.

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Cryptozoology

Strange photo was taken by tourists near Loch Ness

Strange photo was taken by tourists near Loch Ness 118
Mary Evans Picture Library

Inverness, December 23. A new photograph of a mysterious creature “the size of a very large seal” in Loch Ness has been announced as another official sighting of the Loch Ness monster.

Tourist Karen Scott, returning from Aberdeen, noticed a strange creature in the Scottish Loch Ness. The woman managed to capture her observation in the photo. At first, Scott took what he saw for a big bird, she admitted to reporters. According to the traveler, while she took out the camera, the mysterious creature managed to submerge itself under the water.

Strange photo was taken by tourists near Loch Ness 119

“By the time I turned on the camera on my phone, it was slowly submerged under the water and then reappeared at a short distance,” she shared.

Scott and her friend compared the creature they saw to a large seal, but workers at the lake have denied this assumption. According to experts, seals rarely get that far into Loch Ness.

The tourist flow to these places in 2020 was much lower than in previous years due to the coronavirus pandemic, experts studying Nessie noted. Despite this circumstance, during this year, travelers recorded a large amount of evidence of the existence of the Loch Ness monster, scientists were surprised.

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Cryptozoology

In Africa, some tribes still believe in the existence of a dinosaur on the Congo River

In Africa, some tribes still believe in the existence of a dinosaur on the Congo River 120
pixabay.com

There are already a great many cryptids in our world. But at the same time, we do not have any evidence of their real existence, except for legends and eyewitness accounts. Of course the ocean is still a very unexplored sphere of the Earth. There may indeed be some prehistoric cryptids preserved there. For example, there is one horseshoe crab, which is almost 500 million years old. 

But in Africa there has long been a belief about a certain Mokele-Mbemba, who lives in the Congo basin. This legend confuses scientists. If the most ancient creatures can still be preserved in the ocean, then they could hardly remain on Earth, especially when it comes to dinosaurs.

Judging by African beliefs, dinosaurs on Earth are not yet extinct?

However, judging by the descriptions of local residents, either some sauropod from the Jurassic period or a real plesiosaur lives in the Congo. It is not known exactly who it is about. The appearance of this creature, described by eyewitnesses from Africa, often resembles the Loch Ness monster. 

Mokele-mbemba is credited with a long neck, a raptor’s head and aggressive predatory behavior. According to some tribes, a mysterious dinosaur can hunt hippos that are afraid of him and go away. According to other sources, he is a herbivore. No matter how many expeditions were organized to the Congo to search for this creature, not one of them was crowned with success. None of the naturalists have come across a mokele mbembe. This sometimes gives the impression that this creature is just a product of the mythology of local residents.

In 2001, the BBC and Discovery Channel filmed an entire movie dedicated to the search for the mysterious Mokele Mbembe. From conversations with representatives of tribes, experts found out that the mysterious creature could be …. A common rhino. 

The fact is that there are practically no rhinos in the Congo basin. Local peoples are usually not fond of distant travel. But rhinos could well have lived in these lands centuries ago. From all this, naturalists concluded that by mokele-mbembe they mean any of the African rhinos. 

Moreover, when one of the experts showed the local a photograph of a rhinoceros, they replied that it was the same mythical monster. Therefore, scientists thought that the legend was created by those who personally saw these giant pig-like animals in distant times. In addition, the mysterious traces of mokele-mbembe,

Judging by African beliefs, dinosaurs on Earth are not yet extinct?

True, it is worth considering the opinion of cryptozoologists who are looking for outlandish creatures on Earth. Over a century of this entire cryptozoological campaign, researchers talked to many locals in the Congo and received very mixed information. 

Some Africans said that the mokele-mbembe has a very long neck, more characteristic of a dinosaur, as well as the existing scales. Moreover, there was information about the carnivorousness of this beast. In this case, this animal can no longer be equated with a rhinoceros. Almost nowhere was it reported that the beast had a giant horn.

 A biologist named Roy McCull undertook two expeditions to find the mokele-mbembe and failed. But he is still sure that the mysterious creature is not a rhino at all, but a real sauropod that has survived to this day. 

McCull strongly disagrees that the mokele-mbembe could be a mammal or an amphibian. But the official science does not recognize the existence of surviving dinosaurs at all, and calls the legend of the African “dinosaur” an ordinary fantasy

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