Tasmanian tiger: thought to be extinct yet sighted two months ago

In 1936, the Tasmanian tiger (Thylacinus cynocephalus) was declared to be extinct. Yet in the last three years, there have been eight reported sightings according to Tasmania's Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment. I hope it's true. From CNN:

While stories abound that some continue to live in the remote wilds of Tasmania, an island state off Australia's south coast, there has been no hard evidence to support this -- only claims of sightings, like the ones newly released.

One report last February said that two people, visiting Tasmania from Australia, were driving when an animal with a stiff tail and striped back walked onto the road.

The animal "turned and looked at the vehicle a couple of times" and "was in clear view for 12-15 seconds," the report read. Both people in the car "are 100% certain that the animal they saw was a thylacine."

Another report filed the same month described a striped "cat-like creature" moving through the mist in the distance.

image: Thylacines in a Washington DC zoo, c.1906 (public domain) Read the rest

Lake monster license plate to raise money for clean water

Champ, the lake monster that reportedly lives in Lake Champlain, may soon appear on Vermont license plates. Representative Dylan Giambatista (D-Essex Junction) introduced legislation to create the plate to raise money for the state's clean water fund and raise awareness about water conservation. From WCAX:

"For me, it involves thinking out of the box about how are we gonna fund our challenges," (Giambista says). One way we could do it is to offer a license plate. I would call it a 'Be a Champ' water license plate..."

The bill creates a conservation plate -- several styles already exist that feature deer and loon. But Giambatista says it could also be a special issue plate. like the Vermont Strong ones issued after Tropical Storm Irene that helped raise a million dollars for recovery efforts.

"We would want to put Champ on it because we want folks to be a water champ and to focus the conversation about water quality in this state. We gotta go to what people know, so let's start with a beloved figure like Champ. Let's get the conversation started and let's raise money for a good cause," Giambatista said.

Read the rest

Create your own cryptozoological beasts with this web app

Snail Whale

Move aside Fail Whale, now the internet has a Snail Whale (and other strange beasts).

Digital Culture's interactive Hybridizer app allows you to digitally create cryptozoological creatures using the 17th c. art of engraver Matthäus Merian. His work has been digitized, split in half, and animated by the team of Kajetan Obarski, Igor Hardy and Tukasz Kozak.

Give it a whirl.

(Nag on the Lake) Read the rest

The Loch Ness Monster is worth $54 million to the Scottish economy

Real or not, the Loch Ness Monster brings in $54 million to the Scottish economy each year, an increase of $14.4 million from four years ago. The data comes from accountant Gary Campbell who also happens to be the official keeper of the Nessie sightings register. From the UK Press and Journal:

“We analysed the number of people that visit the attractions around the loch, along with those who took to the water to try to get a closer look for Nessie and then took other research into tourism spend on overnight accommodation and food,” said Mr Campbell.

“We then added in the day trippers and from this we conservatively estimate that the draw of the monster is adding £40.7m to the local economy each year...."

The research has been endorsed by tourism ambassador and director of Loch Ness Marketing, Willie Cameron.

“From my perspective and from the numbers and spend we see at the loch, I’d say that this is a very conservative estimate but at over £40m per annum, it shows that Scotland’s rural economy can make a significant contribution to the health of the overall Scottish economy,” he said.

Image: "The Surgeon's Photograph" of 1934, known to be a hoax. Read the rest

GOP candidate who campaigned with a white supremacist condemned for Bigfoot erotica

Former Air Force spy Denver Riggleman is the GOP Congressional candidate for Virginia's 5th district, and he's caught flack for campaigning with the notorious white supremacist Isaac Smith, co-founder of Unity & Security for America. Read the rest

Mysterious sea monster photographed on Georgia shore

Over the weekend, Jeff Warren and his family spotted this mysterious sea monster washed up on the shore of the Wolf Island National Wildlife Refuge near Darien, Georgia. It is either:

• Altamaha-ha (aka Alty), a cryptid, said to live near the mouth of the Altamaha river, that reportedly looks very similar to what's in the photo

• A frilled shark, according to a marine science educator at the Tybee Island Marine Science Center

• A basking shark, in the opinion of a Savannah State University marine scientist

• Or a hoax, according to scientists at Georgia Southern University.

Either way, the story ends well.

“My son, who is twelve, thinks it is the child of the legendary Altamaha-ha and has now decided he wants to be a marine biologist,” Warren said.

(Savannah Morning News) Read the rest

Video of the new "Penobscot River Monster" in Maine

A fellow named Alain Ducas posted video that he says he shot in Bangor, Maine from the roof of the Hollywood Casino Hotel & Raceway Bangor overlooking the Penobscot River. I don't think that's a new river cryptid though. More likely it's the Loch Ness Monster on vacation in Maine. After all, Nessie hasn't been spotted in her Scotland home since May 7 when the video below was captured. That said, the Penobscot River Monster could just as easily be Champ, the monster residing in Lake Champlain. (Mysterious Universe)

Read the rest

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