Thursday, 11 December 2008

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Neil Arnold at Mania.com

Thanks to fellow researcher Nick Redfern, Neil gets to promote MONSTER! THE A-Z Of Zooform Phenomena and also give his opinions on sightings of Bigfoot-type creatures in the UK. Link HERE Also at the website you'll find numerous articles from Nick pertaining to weird creatures of folklore such as werewolves.

Sunday, 7 December 2008

It's here....MYSTERY ANIMALS OF KENT


The first ever book of it's kind and published as part of the CFZ's MYSTERY ANIMALS OF THE BRITISH ISLES series, Neil Arnold's mammoth MYSTERY ANIMALS OF KENT should be hitting the shelves around Christmas/New Year.


Featuring Neil's monster-hunting adventures in search of mystery cats, spectral hellhounds, prowling wolves, weird winged things, red-eyed apparitions, local campfire tales and more...you'd have never read anything else like it.

Avialable from the likes of Amazon, Play, and from the author.

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Neil in Fate Magazine


Neil Arnold has an article on London's monsters and strange beasts in the Nov/Dec' isue of FATE MAGAZINE.

Link to the magazine website HERE

Friday, 28 November 2008

Monsters of Blue Bell Hill, Maidstone.

In the January 2009 issue (31) of Paranormal Magazine Neil Arnold has an article pertaining to mystery creatures seen in the area of Blue Bell Hill. From phantom dogs to mysterious, red-eyed humanoids. Proof that Blue Bell Hill is one very strange area indeed.

The Yeti in Philadelphia ?

No, just a mangy fox! Read Neil's latest Phillyist HERE

Tuesday, 18 November 2008

Darklore 2 featuring Neil Arnold


Fancy some weird bedtime reading ? Then 'Darklore 2' should be right up your street. Featuring a collection of articles on varying high strangeness, and edited by Greg Taylor, this fascinating book includes Neil Arnold's article on 'The Bennington Triangle', a mysterious place in Vermont, USA, that has seen numerous cases of bizarre creatures, odd disappearances and the like.


Check out the book : http://dailygrail.com/news/darklore-volume-2-released It is available from Amazon and all good internet booksellers.

Monday, 3 November 2008

The Brentford Griffin

Neil's latest feature at The London Word covers the winged monster seen over Brentford, England, in the 1980s.

Neil on Paranormal Radio

Neil will be appearing on Captain Jack's Paranormal Radio on Thursday 7th November at 3;30 am (UK time) where he will be discussing monsters.

Tuesday, 28 October 2008

Neil on White Noise Paranormal Radio

This Halloween Neil Arnold will be appearing on WHITE NOISE PARANORMAL RADIO from 10:00 pm

Friday, 17 October 2008

The Snallygaster!

This particular monster gained entry into Monster! The A-Z Of Zooform Phenomena, and it seems as though the mystery beast is back in the news again and the subject of a new book HERE

Tuesday, 14 October 2008

Interview with Kurt McCoy

Below, Morgan's Ridge Mine (photo by Kurt McCoy)
On October 14th 2008 I interviewed Kurt McCoy, the author of WHITE THINGS: WEST VIRGINIA'S WEIRD WHITE MONSTERS. It was a pleasure to interview him as he was new to the game with regards to interviews, but I feel fortunate to have picked up a copy of his interesting book and hopefully, after reading this interview, you too will spend your hard-earned cash on WHITE THINGS.

The Interview:

1) Hi Kurt, thanks very much for agreeing to be interviewed, please tell the readers a little about what prompted you to write a book on West Virginia's 'white things' ?

Heya, Neil! Thanks for giving me the opportunity to be heard far from these shadow-haunted hollers. The book grew out of research I was doing for a volume specifically on the Grafton Monster sightings back in 1964 and the ensuing "monster hunt." Newspaper stories were easy to find, but I've had much less success in finding actual witnesses who were willing to discuss their experiences. I kept running across other stories of other monsters, and since I already had several stories I'd collected back in my student days, I thought I might as well put all those together and see if a book on the wider phenomenon might encourage more witnesses to speak up. That and I wanted to put together a sort of "test volume" in order to find out how difficult and expensive publishing would be. Turns out, it's much more work than I anticipated and considerably less cost than I'd feared!

2) Of all the stories you unearthed, what creature in the book fascinates you the most ?

The Morgan's Ridge Monster has a three to four generations deep history in Mason County. There are cycles of sightings and stories, and hoaxes based on those stories, going back many years. It's a fascinating social phenomenon, if nothing else. The Grafton Monster is a dramatic and exotic beastie that deserves not to be forgotten. But above all, you've gotta love Sheepsquatch! I think that eventually ol' Sheepsquatch will be right up there with Mothman as part of our regional folklore.

3) What are your opinions on such monsters - do you believe they actually haunt the woods of West Virginia or are something far more complex ?

Truthfully, I think most of these stories are the product of social phenomenon, yarnin', hoaxes, exaggerations and the like. But it is undeniable that there really are some people out there who are seeing Something. While I'd like to believe that at least some of those Somethings are real, biological entities, there has to be something more complicated, something stranger at work. There are too many different "types" of beings that have been seen and the circumstances under which they are observed range from mundane to the extremely bizarre. Ultimately, all I can say is that we have a genuine mystery of some sort roaming our hills and forests.

4) My book 'zooform' is the first ever book to collate these kind of ethereal creatures. What are your opinions on such apparitions which remain out of the framework of the paranormal and cryptozoology ?

It's a fantastic book, by the way, and I have personally adopted the term "zooform" as the best label to put on these weird creatures. As with John Keel's "Ultraterrestrials" there is a sense that a lot of these different beings are very similar, under the skin, as it were. I think anyone who seriously researches these sorts of sightings will quickly find themselves deep into a paranormal phenomenon rather than a biological one. We have widely disparate entities being seen which behave in almost the exact same manner. We have exactly similar entities being seen across an impossibly wide geographical range. They are literally everywhere we are. Some of that can be explained sociologically, but a lot of it cannot. We are sharing our world with...Something, something that we do not understand or even have a solid name for."Zooform" is about the best term we've got, to date.

5) Do you believe the colour of the creatures you've covered is relevant to their mythical status ?

Oh certainly! We generally get either black or white in our beastly apparitions, and both have deep social and symbolic significance. Either can represent supernatural or otherworldly origins. It so happens that here in West Virginia, we seem to have a significantly higher number of the white variety, compared to our neighboring states. The conventions of storytelling can account for some of that, of course. But we are still left with a glaringly obvious regional anomaly, any which way you look at it.

6) Why do certain regions of the USA, i.e. West Virginia, Ohio, Maryland, seem to harbour a wealth of weird things, and also appear to be plagued by such monstrosities ?

The most sigficant reason for the apparent clustering, I think, is the presence or absence of researchers who document the sightings. Maryland has a very high number of weird creature sightings for it's size and population, but it also has a number of very vocal, prolific and diligent researchers. West Virginia turns out to have had many more sightings than I would have expected, given what I'd read in the literature. Once you start digging into the old papers and talking to long time local residents, monsters literally start popping out of the wood work. These things are not really "rare." Almost every town or community has had their own encounters at some point in their history.West Virginia has always had a reputation for being a place that is not quite like the surrounding regions. The conspicuous absence of large Indian populations here in the Colonial era and the often dire stories that surrounding tribes told about this region leads one to suspect that there is something particularly anomalous about our strange little mountain state. It is easy to believe that something is lurking in the deep woods, in the dark hollows, or under the hills.As for Ohio, well, Ohio is just weird like that. Place is crawling with monsters and spectres and whatnot! They really out to do something about that. Yessir!

7) Have you ever experienced a 'white thing' ?

Other than the odd experience I wrote about in the afterword, not really. My only crypto-relevent sighting was of a huge dark shape outside my window when I was a child. Since that was on the other side of the curtains, all I can say about it was that it was very large and dark and reeked of menace. 'Course, all too many of our neighbors could have been described the same way, so...

8) What has the response been like to the book ?

Surprisingly positive! Since I'm so close to it, I see every gaffe and wrinkle and flaw. Most of the people I've talked to about it seem to have enjoyed it, which was the main goal. Heck, even my Dad had nice things to say about it!

9) Was it easy to find a publisher regarding the book ?

Easy as looking in the mirror! Heh. This was my test project for entering self-publishing. Given the state of the art in print on demand and desktop publishing, self-publishing is much more practical than ever before. For books like mine with an unusual topic and a narrow regional focus, self-publishing seemed about the only way to go. 'Sides, it's nice to be in control of one's own work from start to finish, though it would be nice to have the validation that being picked up by a big publishing house would provide.

10) What books influenced you whilst writing WHITE THINGS ?

The biggest influences have been Dr. Ruth Ann Musick's The Tell-Tale Lilac Bush and John Keel's Mothman Prophecies. Dr. Musick really discovered and documented the archetypal White Thing cases. John Keel opened my eyes to the delightful depth of weirdness that my own home state contained. Just about as important as either, though, was John Moore's WVGhosts.com site. John was doing online what I'd been doing as an undergrad, collecting and preserving stories. His work is what convinced me that this phenomenon was more widely spread than just a local monster legend.

11) Have you ever gone looking for a 'white thing' ?

Certainly! Part of the fun of monster-hunting or story collecting is going out in the field and seeing these places and talking to the witnesses first hand! I've crouched in reputedly monster-haunted woods in the dark, stayed overnight in haunted hotels--walking the floors through the wee hours, boated above the sunken lair of river monsters and stared into subterranean tunnels whispered to be home to horrors unimaginable. Didn't go into the tunnels, mind you, I'm a rabid claustrophobe, so I don't do tunnels or caves. Nope! Never.

12) I once wrote an article on Sheep-squatch and other WV odd-bodies. Do you plan on an update or have you covered all that's to cover ?

Well, one always hopes to have written a definitive account, but there's guaranteed to be something that escaped notice the first time 'round. I know that there are more stories about the Kanawha County Creature, but I didn't have the transportation or social networking necessary to ferret them out. There are still stories buried in local newspapers that I didn't find, witnesses that I don't know about, etc. I suspect that I've barely scratched the surface of the whole story. Then there are significant other works such as your own article that I didn't have access to while I wrote this book. I've toyed with the idea of doing a second edition, but I think I'd rather do a follow up volume down the road. I still want to do books specifically on the Grafton Monster and the Morgan's Ridge Monster--as new information comes to light. And then there's Sheepsquatch. Sheepsquatch has got to have his own book, someday. It's a vitally necessary type thing.

13) Do you believe the 'white things' are all connected or separate mysteries ?

A little of both, really. Each individual story, each encounter is a unique event with elements exclusive to that particular experience. But it's impossible not to think that there is something fundamental underlying the whole range of events. Whether that something will turn out to be purely sociological or a metaphysical mystery, I dunno. Not knowing is half the fun!

14) Have there been any fresh sightings of a 'white thing' ?

Oh yes! The more I circulate the book the more I get people coming up to me with their own tales. There was a gray hairy thing sighted near Rosemont, WV that greatly resembles the Baker's Ridge Monster and the Beans Mill Monster. A friend told me of a cousin who saw somthing "not an animal and not a person" on the Goshen Road at night. More stories of Sheepsquatch emerge as people find out that others have likewise witnessed the bizarre beastie. One cannot overestimate the importance of the "But I'm Not Crazy!" factor.

15) Anything else you'd like to mention to promote your book ?

Sure! To date I've only printed a small batch of the book to test the publishing process and feel out what the demand might be like. As soon as I'm properly licensed and Ogua Books has it's full legal existence, I will be selling the book to bookstores and libraries, and hopefully soon on Amazon.com as well. Meanwhile, the next couple of books are already in progress! "The Truth is Out There!" And I want to make sure that anyone who is interested will get to read about it!Thanks!

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Book Review: WHITE THINGS by KURT MCCOY


In 2007 when my book MONSTER! THE A-Z OF ZOOFORM PHENOMENA was published I attempted, within its 400 pages, to categorise many bizarre creatures and monstrous manifestations across the world which clearly were not flesh and blood forms but something far more strange, and often malignant. Since then, not many zooform-related books have emerged which is a shame considering most regions throughout the world are littered with spectral beasts, animal appairions and other incomprehensible monsters. So, thank goodness for Kurt McCoy and his 100-page book WHITE THINGS: WEST VIRGINIA'S WEIRD WHITE MONSTERS, published by Ogua Books.

Even the most hardened monster-hunters will not have heard of some of the strange entries in this book which are simply presented as stories rather than matter of fact events. Sure, some of the entries in WHITE THINGS are vague, others are foggy legends, some mere whispers, but that's the power and the magic of zooform creatures, entities which over time have had the power to terrify us, to shape shift and then vanish, never to be heard from again.

McCoy looks at a true phantom menagerie of West Virginia monsters, from the Graveyard Dogs, to the monster of Morgan's Ridge, and not forgetting the Sheepsquatch and an alien ark of white anomalies, some of which made it into my book.

A majority of these tales are sightings which have been passed down as campfire tales, and you can imagine some of these stories being read by the glow of a flickering flame. Of course, you'll be familiar with the Mothman weirdness which is mentioned here, but most of the cases are brand new yarns of terror, so, if you want to read another classic zooform book, then fix your eyes on this before it slips away into obscurity, because I'm pretty sure that monsters such as The White Devil, The Beast Of Boaz, and the White Wolf Of Elkins will have you reaching for the light switch.

Friday, 26 September 2008

Neil's article for Paranormal Magazine


Ever wondered what a zooform is ? In the November issue of Paranormal Magazine Neil Arnold explains just what bizarre monsters lurk in the phantom menagerie. Also, Karl Shuker talks about the Asian apeman known as the Orang Pendek and Janet Bord goes in search of small humanoids such as fairy beings.


Tuesday, 16 September 2008

White Noise Paranormal Radio

Neil Arnold will be discussing his book plus al manner of weird creatures at White Noise Paranormal Radio

Sunday, 7 September 2008

MONSTER! reviewed in Paranormal Magazine


The October 2008 issue (28) of Paranormal Magazine features an excellent set of articles pertaining to bizarre creatures whcih have been mentioned in Monster! The A-Z Of Zooform Phenomena. The best of these is Nick Redfern's superb article on the possibility of a British Bigfoot, and there's also articles by Janet Bord on paranormal manimals, Editor RichardHolland goes in search of phantom black dogs, and also writes about other animal spirits.

The latest issue also reviews MONSTER! THE A-Z OF ZOOFORM PHENOMENA, giving it a 4/5 rating.

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Interview with Bart Nunnelly



1) Hi Bart, firstly, can you tell me a bit about yourself ?




Sure, Neil. I'm just a simple Kentucky boy. That's all. I have no degrees on my wall. I don't consider myself an 'expert' on anything. Just an ordinary fellow who's experienced more than his share of the extraordinary.




2) You wrote the fantastic Mysterious Kentucky which concentrated on local phenomena, please tell the readers the kind of things which happen locally.




The area where I was born and raised in Western Ky is what's known by paranormal and Fortean investigators as a 'window' area. A place where multiple unexplained phenomena tend to overlap, and these places are scattered throughout the Bluegrass State. As a result many of the residents of the commonwealth have been exposed to mysteries such as UFOs, Bigfoot and other strange creatures, Spectral activity, animal mutilation, Skyfalls, Black Panther sightings...the list goes on and on. Fortean activities like these have been happening in Ky. since before the first white settlers set foot here and, in fact, might even be said to be 'on the rise' for the last few years.




3) Your main interest is cryptozoology, what are your thoughts on the recent Georgia Bigfoot corpse fiasco?




I honestly don't believe that I've ever seen such ridiculously pedantic behaviour from two grown men in my life. Shameful. I never for a minute thought they had a Bigfoot body because, quite honestly, I don't believe these things can be killed, but my poker player instincts told me that something was going on. They seemed to be controlling the situation just as planned, and content with the way things were going. Perhaps the only result they had in mind was portraying the cryptozoology field in a bad light, or besmirching or ruining certain researchers reputations. However, I think what they succeeded in actually doing was showing to the world (and particularly the money-men in the various entertainment mediums) the massive amount of public interest in the Bigfoot mystery. Everyone wanted to believe. Everyone. I think that this interest will soon begin to be exploited more thoroughly in the very near future.




4) You made a fine documentary regarding the Dogman legend, please can you tell us a little about the legend and why you decided to make a film ?




Simply because the Dogman phenomenon is too often overlooked by the public. Everyone's heard a hundred Bigfoot stories, but not so much is ever heard about the werewolf subject. And that's really what this is all about. An ancient enigma, steadfast, dangerous and terrifying, with a new name. It's very possible these creatures can be dangerous, even deadly, and the people really have a right to know these things. Those that dare to believe anyway.




5) Many 'monsters' sighted around the world appear to be folklore or based on eye-witness sightings, but in the case of a dogman-type creature, it seems there were actual murders, please tell us more ?




'Alleged' murders. I can't say for sure the killings took place. On the other hand, I see no reason to disbelieve the primary witness in the Dogman Murders. She seemed honest, sincere and very upset as she recounted her tale for John (Johnsen of 'Grendel Films) and I. She also seemed like an observant and reliable witness. If the murders did take place, and I suspect they did, then a highly elaborate and very effective cover up was implemented there in Livingston County, Ky. This is not so unbelievable either when you consider the millions of tourist dollars generated in the LBL area every year that would be jeopardized were this information made public. When we visited the scene of the alleged murders we found a fairly intricate series of abandoned underground bunkers - which really concretes the notion that the government was involved in some way after the fact. What didn't make it onto the dvd were other eyewitness testimonies of werewolf activity in the vicinity. I can tell you for a fact that there are other people in the area who believe that the documented murders are not the only ones committed there attributed to the Beast of LBL.




6) Do you think the Dogman is a flesh and blood creature or a more complex entity ?




I think the Dogman's a more complex entity. Surely. And the truth of all this lies within our own hearts if we don't deny or ignore it.




7) Do descriptions of the Dogman, given by witnesses match up or is there an inconsistency suggesting confusion ?




They match up well for the most part. There seem to be two types of these creatures. The Dogman is basically a hairy man with a dog or wolf's, head and claws. The Mandog, on the other hand, is a large dog that walks and runs upright (although both have the capability of also running quadrupedally). Very different creatures as the Dogman has shoulders and human-like legs, although some have also been reported as having lupine legs bent backwards. Surprisingly, only a few reports that I've read mention tails.




8) Do you believe the Dogman is any relation, or the same animal as the Bray Road Beast of Wisconsin ?




Yes. These things have been seen all over the world for thousands of years. They are all related, I'm sure. What they are, of course, is a matter of debate.




9) You've had a strange encounter with Bigfoot. I've always believed such creatures are an undiscovered primate but you beg to differ, explain ?




I think we need to keep in mind that Bigfoot is merely one aspect of the larger 'Beastman' puzzle. We have the apemen, sure, but we also have dogmen, lizardmen, frogmen, mothmen, birdmen, batmen...the list is almost endless. In some instances like the 'Spottsville Monster' case we have more than one anthropomorphic creature prowling around the same location! Logically, there seems no possibility that all these creatures could merely be undiscovered hominiods living alongside us in the modern world. In some cases these apemen have been described as having supernatural powers and linked with other phenoms like UFOs and hauntings. I've experienced this connection personally and know that its real. And, if even one of these creatures can be linked with anything supernatural, then I think all of them is, at the very least, suspect by association.




10) These ethereal monsters seem to date back since the dawn of mankind.Do you think such mysterious creatures will ever be explained ?




They already are as far as I'm concerned. I've looked into these mysteries for 25 years but it really only takes 1 or 2 to form a basic opinion of what's going on. There's only one logical conclusion and it's inescapable, really. The key is to ask the right questions with an open mind and don't censure the answers to fit some preconceived notion. Let the facts lead where they may. I just want to say that the truth is, indeed, out there.




11) Why doesn't the government spend money or show any interest in cryptid research ?




Most likely because the government already knows what they are, as well as their purpose in the grand scheme of things. And I'm speaking about the more bizarre type cryptids here, not undiscovered species of oxen in Sumatra. Bigfoot, Nessie, Mothman, El Chupacabras, the staples of cryptozoology which, ironically, seem to be more zooform in nature than actual, flesh and blood animals.




12) Which cryptid out there is likely to be found in the next few years ?




There are still millions of species left to discover out there. As of this moment, every one of them are cryptids. I think the most likely ones are the ones that live in water. It's really no stretch at all to envision all manner of aquatic anomalies which may soon be washed ashore or caught in a net. This has already happened many times throughout history but now, in the technologically advanced modern world, there is instant communication and less chance that the next big zoological discovery will be lost or ignored.




13) Many books describe areas of high strangeness which seem hot spots for both mysterious creatures, UFOs, spook lights etc. Do you believe there is a connection ?




Logically speaking, the fact that all these things can and do manifest themselves in the same area during the same time betrays the connection. Glaringly, in my opinion. Each of these enigmas seem to be designed, most cunningly, to illicit a specific reaction or emotional response from the witness. These encounters often result in a paradigm shift for the witnesses, a broadening of their notions of the very nature of the universe. These new beliefs can be very telling if you know what to look for.




14) Are you planning to write any more books ?




Yes. Right now I'm working on "The Inhumanoids: Real Encounters With Beings That Can't Exist", and I also have the beginnings of several more stirring around. Plenty to write about, that's for sure.




15) How often do you get out into the field ?




As often as possible on a weekly salary. This season has been my most inactive one in years due to some personal issues, but I love getting out and chasing down stories of cryptids and other Fortean phenomena. There's really nothing like it.




16) If the Dogman is an ethereal form, why would it murder a family of four, and why have no other murders taken place ?




Well, I honestly can't even begin to attempt to explain the motivations of such a terrible creature as the 'Beast of LBL'. Perhaps it was simply hungry. Or evil. My guess is both. And, as I mentioned earlier, there are those there who believe that this thing has killed before. And will again.




17) Thank you for your time Bart, anything else you'd like to add ?




I'd just like to urge everyone interested in these topics to keep an open mind. Obviously, you can't believe everything you hear, but neither should you discount the data you don't understand. I'd also like to leave this warning: One mystery leads to another...and the truth doesn't come without a price. Happy Hunting!

Friday, 29 August 2008

Vampire rabbits, ghostly swans, and mystery cats...


Mystery Animals Of Northumberland & Tyneside by Michael J. Hallowell (Published by CFZ Press 2008)


This is the first book in a unique and lengthy series compiled by The Centre For Fortean Zoology showcasing the strange animal and monster legends from all the counties across Britain. Blessed with a wonderful cover, and consisting of 244 pages, Mike Hallowell has assembled his own investigations of phantom dogs, giant worms, dragons and man-beasts, alongside many black & white photographs.


I believe books like this must be treasured and are a necessity within the cryptozoological field, especially as such volumes highlight so many obscure tales lost to the public. Such books are just as important as huge crypto-volumes, because although cryptozoology is a science, much of it is based on folkloric accounts of weird and wonderful creatures, and the menagerie contained herein certainly gives the reader a colourful insight into Northumberland's unknown beasts. However, although Mike's writing style is entertaining, I wish the more down-to-earth books were still bereft of obscenities. I'm not a holy guy by any means, but is there any point in such language ? Okay, this is a minor fault, because this book not only covers the flesh and blood side of mystery animals but also the 'zooform' creatures which is why it is covered on this website. Unfortunately, and this is another gripe of mine, categorising the local 'big cat', in this case the Cleadon Panther, is all too sensational as I shall continuously state, and in the said chapter I was also baffled by the mentions of a black cat and yet the answers to the mystery concerning escaped/released pumas. Of course, pumas are not black, and whilst the press are certainly to blame for such statements, I didn't read of one mention of a black leopard.


I thoroughly enjoyed the tales of The Dolly Pit Hell Hounds, The Felton Rabbit etc, and recommend this book to anyone looking to investigate the mysteries of their local area. The series of books will certainly prove to be valuable not only now as great guides, but also in the future when other researchers and the likes are looking to unravel the lesser known mysteries of their region.

Tuesday, 26 August 2008

The Wendigo Murders!

Over at the Centre For Fortean Zoology forum, Richard Freeman has put on several posts regarding strange murders, possession and cannibalistic attacks by humans which have bizarre relations to the Wendigo (Windigo etc), a supernatural man-beast said to haunt the forests of Canada. Check out the grisly details HERE

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Friday, 22 August 2008

DVD Review - HUNT THE DOGMAN


My good friend from Kentucky, Bart Nunnelly, author of the superb 'Mysterious Kentucky' sent me a DVD he recently made alongside John Johnsen, from Grendel Films. This is an essential piece of viewing for anyone interested in strange monsters, whether cryptozoological or ethereal, because what we have here is the first document of a series of sightings of one of the United States most bizarre, and terrifying legends, that of the Dogman. This creature could well have connections with what has become known as Wisconsin's Bray Road Beast a tall, hairy creature with a muzzle said to have been encountered for many decades in the local woods and areas such as Elkhorn. Judging by 'Hunt The Dogman', there could well be a connection between the two anomalies. Is the Dogman a werewolf, a creature allegedly restricted to folklore yet creeping from our urban legends into the backwoods ? Is it a Bigfoot-relative, or something entirely different ? Is the Dogman an etheric scavenger, a ferocious wolf-like humanoid said to attack humans, and be responsible for a handful of murders ?

Whatever the case, 'Hunt The Dogman' is required viewing. Forget the shambolic 'Monster Hunter' series on the History Channel, this is a straight forward investigation that takes you into the field where you'll meet several genuine witnesses to what has become known as The Spottsville Monster, and The Beast Of The Land Between The Lakes. Also featured are Linda Godfrey, author of 'The Beast Of Bray Road' and Bart's own mother who speaks of the legend and her family's encounter with the beast.

It's clear from this documentary that the Dogman, although appearing as a flesh and blood creature, is not a denizen of the forests, but part of a complex jigsaw which throws together so many other weird and ghastly predators which cryptozoology attempts to track but will never find.

DVD's like this don't come along very often, in fact, they are about as rare as the Dogman himself, so order yourself a copy now from Amazon or forever remain in the shadows of ignorance...

Thursday, 21 August 2008

Thursday, 14 August 2008

A Phantom Attacker In Philadelphia

Did a relative of the infamous Spring-Heeled Jack, who terrorised London, appear in Philly ? The answer lies HERE

Wednesday, 13 August 2008

Raven Interview With Neil Arnold

On August 11th 2008 my good friend Raven interviewed me and it can be read at her fantastic website: www.ravensmysterioushaven.blogspot.com Raven, of course, was interviewed by Neil recently, see previous post but one.
Thanks Raven!

Friday, 1 August 2008

An Interview With Monster-Hunter And Paranormal Researcher Mistress Raven (Kathleen Meindel)



At the end of July I interviewed Detroit-based Kathleen Meindel on her passion for monsters and mysterious phenomena. Here is the interview in its entirety. May I thank Kathleen for her time and effort.

1) Hi. You have an interesting blog at http://www.ravensmysterioushaven.blogspot.com/ what can you tell me about your plans for the blog and its purpose ?


Thank you,Neil. My main objective for Raven's Mysterious Haven is to be an informative site that is serious in regards to research and in keeping up with the latest news in the crypto and paranormal communities, but one that can also appeal to our playful side andbring out the childlike curiosty each one of us possesses as well; that part of us that never quite grows up and,more importantly, shouldnt. After all,it is our curiosity which motivated most of us to begin this journey in the first place. I also have hopes that my Haven,as it's name implies, will be a "safe" place where everyone can express their opinions and views of paranormal subjects without fear of ridicule or banishment.


2) When did you first become interested in the paranormal and cryptozoology ?


I was just a small girl. My mother piqued my interest and I followed in her footsteps and grew to have a great passion for everything mysterious. She was very knowledgeable about paranormal subjects and I admired her for it. She had very strong psychic abilities as well,though she had to keep much of her knowledge and ability repressed due to the fact that it stirred controversy in our family and my father was always concerned that it would affect his business if too many people inthe community knew. Now that both of my parents have passed away and that stigma is no longer attached,I would love for the world to know who my mother was and how brilliant she and my father both were. Father also had abilities of his own,but would never openly admit it. So I guess you could say I come by a lot of my interest quite naturally from my upbringing.


3) Please tell about any strange encounters you've had ?

I have had many strange encounters that I cannot explain. I and my immediate family have all experienced bizarre encounters at one time or another. It seems to be a bit of a family legacy. One such encounter was when I was roughly 12 years old and was out playing in the forest with some friends. We encountered an animal that fit the description of Bigfoot. It seemed very curious about us,and watched us for some time from behind atree...til we realized what we were looking at was not another child or adult,but was something altogether different. It was standing upright but was covered in hair.I cannot say with any certainty what it was,because I saw it through eyes that were very young and inexperienced, and many years have passed since. Memories can fade orbecome clouded,but I do know that the one thing I remember for certain is that it was not human,unless it was a man in a suit,which is not likely given the remoteness of the area.It is my hope that I meet up with the creature again one day and can know for sure.


4) What do you think Bigfoot is ?


That is the million dollar question,Neil.I tend to ride the fence a bit on this one because it is my belief we may be dealing with several different situations simultaneously. I definitely believe there is a North American ape still roaming the forests which somehow,through instinct and intelligence, survived the millenia. I know deep in my heart we'll have evidential proof of its existence one day. But the thing that baffles me is why are so many reported to have paranormal-type qualities? In the days of holographic phone systems,wireless internet, and military experimentsbeing exposed,I suppose anything could be possible. Im not beyond considering extraterrestrial involvement either. A lot of bizarre things are coming out into the open in recent years,so, though I may research every situation skeptically,I dont rule out alternative possibilities.


5) Do you research in the field or collect information for articles ?


Yes I do,though my field research is a bit limited at this time due to lack of all the proper equipment. I'm very new to this field but very eager to learn. In the near future I hope to be fully equipped with everything I need for proper researching. Devices are expensive and my income is modest. For now,I take a lot of notes and I have my camera and trusty handheld recorder with me at all times. I conduct interviews and try my best to keep up on the latest news in the community as well. Libraries,universities,and locals are a researcher's best friends!


6) What kind of phenomena occurs in your neck of the woods ?

According to Linda Godfrey's book "Weird Michigan" which I highly recommend,we have alot more lurking about than I thought we did. Aside from many strange ghost stories and apparitions,we have of course Bigfoot,Dogman,and a varying degree of big black cat sightings throughout Michigan.I have had the rare privilege to reside in the two counties with the highest sightings of Bigfoot. I was born and raised in Marquette county,and I now reside inWashtenaw county.Ive recently learned we've even had a Goatman sighting here,which is exceptionally exciting considering two years ago my husband and I were trekking through the woods on the trails at the Botanical Gardens nearby ,and he heard Pan flutes playing backin the woods and directed my attention to them. It's kind of fun to think who or what could've been playing them.

7) Which cryptozoological creatures interest you the most ?

Right now,my current obsession is the Michigan Dogman,a creature whos prescence has apparently been here for many centuries,and especially well known among the state's Native American communities. Whether he turns out to be a spirit creature,flesh andblood,or none of the above,he still holds validity through the many sincere witnesses that have encountered him,and he isnt any less real just because he has yet to be scientifically catalogued. Something is definitely out there. Hopefully one day we'll know exactly what.I believe we'll get there with time,effort,and lots of patience.

8) What are your thoughts on UFO and ghosts ?

As with any of the other subjects,I believe there is validity and substance to a good number of the sightings and encounters,but encounters and sightings of WHAT these actually are could be another matter entirely. We are currently in an age where we have high tech equipment and better working knowledge of it. We are now better able to document and keep records. I believe we are standing on the brink ofa new era when science will truly meet the paranormal in the middle and join forces.We have to consider all options,yet use a process of elimination to find the answers. My own personal thought is that many of these creatures,beings,entities, or whateverwe've chosen to label them this week,could quite possibly turn out to be interdimensional travellers,whether by accident or on purpose is anyone's guess.An interesting note : CERN is right now working on a number of experiments (withtheir LHC collider) regarding dimensions. I wonder what the results will be.

9) Any plans for a book on strange phenomena ?

I need a bit more experience before I take on that project,but yes I do definitely plan to write a book in the relatively near future. I dont have the miles on me yet that my favorite researchers such as yourself,Nick Redfern,Linda Godfrey,and Ken Gerhard have,but I hope to one day follow well in your footsteps and be successful at writing. Id like to first work on a Casebook of first hand witness accounts in my area(which Ive already begun work on gathering accounts),then move on to something more in the way of a research book. I just hope I have half the ambition and talent you do,Neil.

10) Do you believe an answer will ever be found regarding a majority ofmysteries across the world ? i.e. UFOs, ghosts etc.

Yes,I do...and No,I dont.What I mean by that is...Some things I think are meant to be discovered,and some are not,at least at this time in human history.

11) What are your favourite strange phenomena-related books?

I have so many of them! I love to read!A few of my absolute favorites that I love to delve into over and over and use as reference material are as follows:Your book "Monster! The A-Z of Zooform phenomena" : This one has become a text I will carry with me and use over and over as reference material. It's well writtenand very well researched. You did a fabulous job. It is both informative andfun.Youve listed a lot creatures I have never heard of before.Nick Redfern has several great books("Three Men Seeking Monsters" is my favorite ofhis),as does Ken Gerhard("Big Bird!"),Loren Coleman(The Field Guide to Bigfoot"),Linda Godfrey("Hunting the American Werewolf"),Lisa Sheil("Backyard Bigfoot")and Chad Arment("Cryptozoology").I was also very intrigued by "Hunt for the Skinwalker" by Kelleher and Knapp which I read recently and has also become one ofmy new favorites.I really do enjoy reading,so this list is just a small glimpse of what I love to read.

12) What are your opinions on the weirder end of cryptozoology with somany sightings of Dog-Men, wolfmen, scaly humanoids and winged beings ?

Simply put,the child in me wants to believe but the researcher in me wants proof. There are definitely things out there that we have yet to identify and catalogue,butthere is a part of me that also believes some of it may need to be left well enoughalone.Maybe the timing isnt right,maybe it never will be. One thing I know for sure is that half the fun is in getting there. It's fun just being out there in the field wondering what's looking back at me.

13) Anthing else you'd like to add ?

I'd just like to offer my sincere thanks to You,Ken Gerhard,and Nick Redfern forbeing the wonderful role models and mentors that you are. I have learned, and continue to learn, so much from each of you,and I hope I grow in this field to have half the talent that you all do.

Strange Philadelphia creatures...

At Phillyist

Thursday, 24 July 2008

Attack of the blob monster...

Neil's latest feature for Phillyist on bizarre jelly-monsters from the sky and other mystery vapours...

Thursday, 10 July 2008

The Albatwitches of Lancaster County

Check out Neil's latest PHILADELPHIA WEIRDNESS concerning strange beasts said to lurk in the forests of Pennsylvania.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

The book gets a mention...

At ManbeastUK ...Many thanks to Nick Redfern.

Thursday, 5 June 2008

MYSTERY ANIMALS OF THE BRITISH ISLES SERIES

Over at Nick Redfern's MonsterUSA blog there is first mention of the CFZ's new series of books on Mystery Animals across Britain. The CFZ will be publishing a huge volume of county based books, check the link here: http://monsterusa.blogspot.com/2008/06/mystery-animals-of-british-isles-series.html

Thursday, 8 May 2008

Philadelphia hellhounds!

Read Neil's article HERE on ghastly, ghostly black dogs of Philly.

Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Tuesday, 15 April 2008

Neil Arnold on London Radio

On Tuesday 22nd April at 8:20 am Neil will be appearing on London Radio to chat with Paul Ross (brother of Jonathan) and JoAnne Good, hopefully about mystery creatures of London including some zooform beasts. Link for the show HERE

Friday, 11 April 2008

New website on British Man-Beasts!


Nick Redfern, author of 'MAN-MONKEY', has constructed a new, unique website devoted to sightings and legends pertaining to reports of British Bigfoot, and other bizarre bipedal humanoids. Check out the site HERE

Thursday, 10 April 2008

TIME OUT Magazine article (April 10th-16th)


Neil Arnold has written an article on London's mysterious creatures for TIME OUT magazine. The article is on page 52 of the April 10th - 16th edition.

Sunday, 6 April 2008

'Mysterious Kentucky' review.


There are so many books out there in Fortean-land which regurgitate, recycle, and revamp old cases, and it's about time this ceased, because the bookshelves, or should that be, online shops, are becoming crammed with dire volumes of so-called 'new' fresh talent, as well as veteran researchers, and yet these often armchair enthusiasts continue to vomit the same old material, the same old compilations...MYSTERIOUS KENTUCKY, is NOT one of these books. Bart Nunnelly has been out in the field, he's tracked monsters, he's seen strange creatures, and if you want a tour guide to the bizarre side of Kentucky, then Bart and his fascinating book, are the ideal sources of local information.

From strange tunnels in the woods, to intriguing UFO sightings, to huge skeletons excavated, to Men In Black, and if that's not a enough, then feast your eyes on the cryptids and other weird creatures said to prowl Kentucky's woods. The horrifying Spotsville Monster, the vampire of Sturgis, terrifying werewolves, exotic cats, out of place animals and gigantic birds, it's all in here, a treasure trove of high strangeness, a helluva lot of brand new material, and an author who brims full of knowledge, but most importantly, enthusiasm for the mysteries he's pursuing.

'Mysterious Kentucky' is an informative guide crucial to the collection of any Fortean.

Saturday, 5 April 2008

Fortean Times magazine review 'Monster!'


Check out issue 235 (May 2008) for Jay Rath's bemusingly over-critical review of 'Monster! The A-Z Of Zooform Phenomena'!

The book gets a 6/10 rating, much to the amusement of the author Neil Arnold who, it must be said, read the review and was left scratching his head at Mr Rath's spotting of one error, and his admittance that he still didn't know what a zooform creature was at the end of the 400 pages!!!
It's amazing that Charles Fort made a career out of anecdotal notes, and yet Mr Rath becomes critical at some of the entries in the book, saying they are unreliable! He obviously doesn't understand what the phenomenon of zooform is all about, because much of it is indeed based on foggy stories and fleeting sightings. It was Mr Arnold's job to log them...no-one else was brave enough to, and if the book is a scoff at cryptozoology, then so be it, but the facts are, Mothman, Jersey Devil blah blah blah, are NOT flesh and blood, forest dwelling creatures awaiting discovery. Get over it!

Tuesday, 1 April 2008

Great review of 'Monster!'

Bart Nunnelly, author of the fantastic 'Mysterious Kentucky', which I'll be reviewing shortly, has recently reviewed 'Monster!' -:

'The first of its kind, Neil Arnold's 'Monster - The A-Z of Zooform Phenomena' is truly a literary wonder. Ambitious and well written, 'Monster' is the first book to ever attempt to chronicle in one volume the multitude of zooforms that have terrified mankind since the beginning of our species. Not to be mistaken for another cryptid book, 'zooforms' (a term coined in 1990 by Jon Downes of the CFZ), by definition, are supernatural manifestations in animal, or quasi-animal, form, spectral creatures which only briefly visit this world from the twilight dimensions of some other time and place beyond human reckoning.Packed with hundreds of entries describing spectral entities from all over the world, 'Monster' shows us that we are not alone here in our own dimension; that we are being visited by a host of anomalies from phantom felids and hell-hounds to shape-shifting werewolves, griffins, dwarves, waterhorses and winged humanoids which cannot possibly be flesh and blood entities. At just under 400 pages in length this book is sure to provide the reader with hour after hour of beastly delights. As a Fortean writer myself I can appreciate the monumental effort that has gone into producing such a mammoth tome and whole-heartedly applaud Arnold's attention to the detailed research he's put into it. Invaluable as a reference guide, 'Monster' is a must have addition to any Fortean library. Extremely entertaining and thought provoking, this book is most highly recommended to anyone interested in learning just what type of monsters may lurk in the shadows of our world, waiting patiently for unwary passersby. Best read in the safety of one's well lighted living room. A monumental effort!'

Wednesday, 12 March 2008

BEASTS OF LONDON website makes 'Time Out' magazine's TOP 50

Neil's London-based BEASTS OF LONDON website has been voted in the TOP 50 London-based websites by 'Time Out' magazine. Check out the link here: http://www.timeout.com/london/features/4273.html?DCMP=OTC-Mag-50BestWebsites

Sunday, 9 March 2008

Phantom Ape Of Hampstead

Article for Londonist on a spectral primate, see it here

Friday, 15 February 2008

Neil's article on bizarre creatures...

...can be read here: http://phillyist.com/2008/02/13/philadelphia_we_3.php and is episode three for Phillyist and covers Goatmen of Lancaster County plus other strange monsters.

Lake Monster article

Neil's article on the monster of Elizabeth Lake, Los Angeles County can be read here for LAist.

Sunday, 3 February 2008

Trolls, The Donkey Lady etc.

Austinist website is running a new column of mine called 'Keeping It Weird In Texas' and here's the the first installment, talking about monsters as urban legends such as Old Foamy and the rolls underneath Joppa Bridge at Burnet County. Keep an eye out for more local monsters...

Neil's 'Californian 'Reptile Man' article

Another bizarre adventure for the LAist, this time covering the classic Charles Wetzel 'reptile man' encounter. Look out for more articles on Laist regarding strange and mysterious creatures within Los Angeles County and the surrounding areas.

Tuesday, 29 January 2008

Fantastic article on 'zooform' creatures...

An intriguing article here on the complex, social structure of zooform creatures, which, hits the nail on the head when explaining some of the forms in the book.

Monday, 28 January 2008

Another Bigfoot article for LAist

Neil has another Bigfoot installment for LAist website.

Friday, 25 January 2008

Neil on Tuesday After Twilight

Check out Neil on Tuesday After Twilight 29th January 2008 SHOW CANCELLED, A NEW POST WILL BE ADDED ONCE SHOW HAS BEEN RESCHEDULED

Thursday, 24 January 2008

Bigfoot article for Los Angeles website


Neil has become the cryptozoology/paranormal contributor to several U.S. websites belonging to the '-ist' family, such as, Phillyist and LAist. His first article for LAist is on Bigfoot sightings in and around Los Angeles County.

Monday, 21 January 2008

Interview with Lara K. Leuter - Jersey Devil Hunter!

(Left - Charley and Laura on the hunt, 19th January 2008)


In January 2008 I interviewed Laura Leuter, president of the New Jersey Devil Hunters, check out their website regarding the long-running mystery of one of cryptozoology's strangest creatures, the Jersey Devil, said to have roamed the dense Pine barrens for several centuries.
Laura gave me the lowdown on her investigations and theories, and with her kind permission allowed me to use some of her photo's from the 19th January hunt:


1) Laura, firstly, please can you explain a little about the legend of the Jersey Devil? According to legend, in 1735, a woman named Mrs. Leeds from Leeds Point was in labor with her 13th child. During a fit of pain, she cried out, “Let this child be a devil!” and when the infant was born, it morphed into a hideous creature. The creature then devoured everyone in the room, and fled through a chimney to the Pine Barrens, where it has haunted the area ever since.
That’s one variation of the legend, probably the most widely known. Other variations say that he did not eat the family, and instead used to visit them for many years, due to Mrs. Leeds feeding it. One day, she shooed it away, and it never returned.
Other variations say that Mrs. Leeds was cursed by a gypsy in the woods after refusing her food, or was cursed due to the fact that she was having an affair. Others say that it wasn’t Mrs. Leeds, but actually Mrs. Shrouds.
It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what the legend is, as it is a tale that has traveled through generations and of course things were changed over the years.

2) Can you tell me a bit about the Devil Hunters, what made you start a group to investigate the sightings, how many members you have, your aims etc ? We are a group dedicated to the search for the truth about the Jersey Devil. We conduct research through written word as well as actual field work. We research the legend itself, and the history surrounding that, while also visiting witnesses and gathering their accounts.
At the current moment, we actually have 13 regular members, which is just a coincidence. We’re looking to continue expanding our regular member base. Regular members are the people we count on for conducting the research and going on hunts. We also offer a second membership option, which is known as Associates. We’ve got about a 100 or so associates, located around the world, who help with online research, theories, etc.
I was prompted to start this group back in 1999. I had been researching this creature when I was a little girl, and I had always had the hopes of going out to the house foundation where the Jersey Devil was supposedly born. But, at the time I was about 12, which meant there was no way it would be possible for me to even consider going out in the woods in search of a burnt down house. However, as I got older, and found myself in discussions about the Jersey Devil, the two original founders and I decided to put the group together and go do this. So here we are, almost 9 years later, still in search of the truth.

3) What evidence have you uncovered in the woods ? (photo right - strange pile of bird feathers discovered on 19th January 2008 hunt) It’s tough to say. What we have found is a lot of footprints that don’t make any sense. They will start and stop without a defined trail; there will be one print in the middle of nowhere, and no continuation. We’ll find them in hard to reach places that a deer couldn’t get into. We’re going to start casting these prints to see what we can find from them.

4) What is the general description of the Jersey Devil and has this identity altered over time ? It is usually described in simplest terms as a deer standing upright with wings. To get more specific, people usually say it has a deer or horse like face and torso, hair covering the body, bat like wings, hoofed feet, and a long tail. It is most often described as being within the 5-6 feet range in height, and has a large wingspan. Some describe its eyes as piercing, and claim that it has claws on its hands.

5) What, in your and the groups opinion, is the Jersey Devil ? Each member of the group basically has their own opinion, which is a great element to our team. I think it’s awesome that we each can hold our own beliefs, yet work together in search of the truth. Personally, I think it is an undiscovered creature that hides from humans really well. Others in the group have leaned towards supernatural explanations, others aren’t even convinced it actually exists. But the undiscovered creature theory is probably the one that is most common amongst us. We all keep an open mind though, since we’re only talking about opinions. Until the truth is known, we’ll never know for sure who is right and who is wrong.

6) This legend has spanned more than a century which surely suggests that we are not dealing with a flesh and blood creature, what are your opinions of this ? I actually disagree, I think that we are dealing with generations of a flesh and blood creature. I tend to live by Ockham’s Razor, the principle that, all things being equal, the simplest answer is the best answer. So, to explain, I think it is more likely that a creature has multiplied throughout the years in the Pine Barrens, than a supernatural entity. I think the idea of generations of ‘Jersey Devils’ would explain the variations in description, height, etc., and would account for the longevity of sightings over the years. However, again this is merely my opinion, so I can’t say for sure.

7) In May of 2007 I had a unique book published concerning 'zooform' creatures. In the book there are several creatures across the world which seem related or sharing the characteristics in legend and identity as the JD. Do you believe the JD to be unique to New Jersey or one of many strange, winged entities ? I think the Jersey Devil is most likely something found throughout the nation, perhaps the world. I think maybe we have a concentration of them here in our area, but I don’t think that New Jersey is the only place that the Jersey Devil could be. In fact, I get many reports of out of state sightings as well, so that right there suggests that it is found in many places, not just here. I think we just like to own it in New Jersey, that’s all. It’s our legend, and we’re proud!

8) How many reports a year do you receive of the JD ? Every year is different, but we still get quite a few. So far, none yet in 2008, but I’m sure it’s only a matter of time. I would say we average about 10 sightings a year, but that really depends.

9) Did the films 'The Blair Witch Project' and 'The Last Broadcast' attract more people to the mystery of the JD ? Interestingly enough, right around the time that we started the group was when Blair Witch came out. We all went and saw it together, and we were completely surprised by it. We didn’t realize that it was faked, either, until afterwards. I think some of those movies have attracted people towards Jersey Devil a little, but none of them have really done any justice to the legend, so it’s not always a direct connection.

10) I saw an episode of 'Scariest Places On Earth' in which the team was put in a 'Blair Witch...' situation. Did you find this frustrating? Unfortunately that was done via some editing tricks on the producer’s side. That experience for us was definitely frustrating in the beginning. I received 800 e-mails in a week, all wanting to know what I had seen and why I wouldn’t talk about it. It’s hard to explain that I wasn’t hiding anything, and that it was a Hollywood trick! At first, we were frustrated about it, but now that all of these years have passed, we all look back at it a little and laugh. It definitely brought some fame and notoriety to the Jersey Devil, so in that sense, it helped project the Jersey Devil back into the mainstream when it comes to creepy cryptos. But it wasn’t the easiest event for us to straighten out!

11) People often describe hearing the screams of the JD. Is it possible that what the people are hearing is in fact cougars? Yes, there is a possibility of that. Cougars do exist in small levels throughout New Jersey, though in all of these years, we’ve never come across one, or even evidence of one. But I don’t deny the possibility that some people have confused a cougar’s scream with the Jersey Devil. However, this doesn’t negate the descriptions from eye witness encounters, so I’m sure in some cases they are not confused by a cougar.

12) Do you think the JD has somehow melted into UFO, ghost and Bigfoot folklore, making it an unfathomable mystery? I think the Jersey Devil has some characteristics that are common amongst the unexplained, but I also think it has its own uniqueness too. I don’t think it’s that unfathomable. I think the legend of a woman giving birth to a devil is probably a stretch, but I’ve met too many people who have had encounters for me to dismiss this as nothing.

13) Have any of your team experienced anything weird in the Pine Barrens? Sure, we experience some weird stuff on most of our hunts, actually. We’ll have weird sounds following us around, we’ll find strange footprints. Our cars will be subtly scratched up when we return to them. We frequently experience battery drainage - just the other day, on Hunt #33, we had some full batteries go completely dead while we approached a known Jersey Devil ‘hotspot’. We’ve heard screams in the distance, we’ve had strange things appear on our pictures… None of which is conclusive evidence at all. So, at this point, we just take this stuff as it comes, and until we have a conclusive picture of the Jersey Devil, we’ll just keep on researching.

14) What truth is there in the legend of Mother Leeds and the Leeds House? Well, there definitely was a Mrs. Leeds back then, that’s for sure. The town of Leeds Point was founded by a man named Daniel Leeds, who came over in the 1600’s on a land grant to develop the area. The Leeds name is very common in South Jersey, especially around the towns of Smithville and (obviously) Leeds Point. We’ve even found records of a woman named Mrs. Leeds throughout the years who had 12 children, and the 13th is listed simply as “Unknown” or “Bastard” Leeds. But, as far as proof of a woman giving birth to a demon, I’m sure we’ll never prove that to be true. If that actually could happen, then it’s likely that many more people would be born a devil, as not too many women are fond of labor!

15) Has the JD ever harmed anyone? No. In all the reports I have received, I have never found anything that made me believe the Jersey Devil actually harmed someone. It has charged people before, and it has attacked livestock and pets, but not humans.

16) What would you do if you filmed the Jersey Devil ? It would depend on the reliability of the film. We would want to make sure that whatever we release to the public is bullet-proof. So even if we did capture footage of the Jersey Devil, if it could be argued as a fake, then we probably would hang on to it. We want to be a team that the world respects and trusts, so we wouldn’t release something questionable. If we did get good, solid film of it, however, we’d probably broadcast it on our website first, and then continue our research into finding out what it is. I think the circumstances of our filming would have a lot to do with what our following actions would be.

17) Do you get many hoaxes? Here and there, we’ll get people reporting false sightings, and there’s not much we can do about that. But in terms of people trying to fool us with a hoax, not really. They’d have to be pretty elaborate. We never release the details of our hunts beforehand, so we do things like that to limit the possibility of people planting themselves in an attempt to spook us with a false sighting or something.

18) Books on the JD are few and far between and there's been no recent updates except on websites. Have you considered writing a book ? Yes, as a matter of fact we have considered writing a book! Our research has taken us to some interesting places with some interesting experiences. For now, though, we find the website to be a better means of publishing Jersey Devil information, as it is a fluid living document that can be changed. Once we put something to print on paper, you have to release a new edition to update it. For example, we’ve had our sightings timeline running for 9 years now, and with the frequency that we update it, we’d be publishing a new book every few months. But, we might write a memoir of our experiences on the hunt… discuss some of the stuff we don’t talk about on the website.

19) I'm of the opinion that the Jersey Devil is in a cultural way related to the Chupacabras of Puerto Rico, as the cases bear striking resemblances. Both cases describe a winged, levitating creature that leaves exsanguinated carcasses in its wake, but could quite simply be more of a cultural phenomenon, meaning it's more of a manifestation. What are your opinions on this ? I’m not as convinced that the Jersey Devil and Chupacabra are closely related. The Jersey Devil isn’t known to leave bloodless victims strewn about, like the Chupacabra is. From what I have read, chupa descriptions tend to be more four-legged, and smaller. The Jersey Devil is known a bit more for its upright stance, and large size. Tough to say. There are definitely similarities, of course, but I think the two stand alone. There are other creatures that I would say are more closely related to the Jersey Devil than the chupa.

20) How long do you think the Jersey Devil legend will persist? I think it has the potential to be endless, as long as there are residents of New Jersey who are still interested in hearing and sharing the story. It’s already been 270+ years that we’ve shared this story, and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere soon.

21) Your group is becoming more active again, what are aims for the future? We definitely are. Over the years, we’ve had to let our lives take the forefront, and weren’t able to get out there as often as we had wanted. However, we’ve all renewed our interest, and we’re excited about coming back. We just conducted our first hunt in over 3 years yesterday, and it was such a thrill! We are looking forward to continuing our research, and just keep the group going until we can prove something, one way or another. There’s still a lot to be learned!

22) The JD has remained a mysterious monster for years, what is the viewpoint of the cryptozoologist on the legend and what you guys do ? Unfortunately, the Jersey Devil gets a bad reputation in the cryptozoology world. Many cryptozoologists see it as a ‘catch-all’ term for any mysterious creature in New Jersey. And I do agree, that some sightings are probably caused by a few different things. But I definitely think there is a specific creature that people witness, which we all refer to as the Jersey Devil. I have had the opportunity to speak with many other cryptozoologists, however, and most of them are very supportive about our team. They’re usually out there with their own teams doing the same thing, so we all like to share some ‘war stories’ on what we’ve done, as well as tips and such.

23) Do you get pestered often by people wanting to join your group? We do get a lot of interest in joining the group, and due to the nature of what we do, we have to be somewhat selective. Obviously you have to watch who you decide to go into the woods with late at night! But I wouldn’t say that it’s pestering, we’re all very flattered by the public interest. Usually we’ll offer associate membership if we can’t accommodate regular membership.

24) Can you tell me of any other strange creatures said to roam the Pine Barrens? There is a creature known as “Big Red Eye”, which is basically the New Jersey version of Bigfoot. There are also a lot of ghost stories of the area, as well as a supposed White Stag, known to be a warning sign of imminent doom. There’s also a pirate and a girl in white that are said to roam the coastlines on occasion.

25) Is it difficult doing investigations knowing other people could be flocking to the places you are tending ? We haven’t had too many problems with that, luckily. On occasion we have run into some hunters in the woods, but not people in search of the Jersey Devil. What upsets me is that we’ll find litter and such around some of these sites, which I consider to be completely disrespectful. It bothers us to see how horribly people can treat these areas.

26) If the JD is an unknown species of animal, what do you think it is? I don’t know, but I would lean towards something related to a deer, perhaps. I actually just read an article that states a link between today’s whales and the deer family, which I found pretty interesting, and also a good reassurance that anything is possible, so it’s not all that far fetched to think that we could be dealing with something similar in this case too.

27) In the UK, legends of dragons have existed for centuries do you believe that such creatures could have been similar to the JD ? I do think that there could be a link between dragon stories and the Jersey Devil. Many people have talked about dragon and dragon like creatures, and I think perhaps there might be a connection between the dragon stories and the tales of the Jersey Devil.

28) If the JD is a winged animal, why would it be confined to the Pine Barrens? I don’t think it is confined. I think it might be likely that it has found the Pine Barrens to be a safe harbor, so it probably stays around this area. But I’m sure it could wander off if it wanted to, and I am sure it has happened in the past.

29) Across Texas there have been numerous reports of leather-winged Pterodactyl critters. Have you considered the JD may be one of these prehistoric survivors ? There was actually a mini-competition between Texas and New Jersey back in the day, which some believe spawned the act of New Jersey naming the Jersey Devil as the state’s official demon. This is also around the time that the Jersey Devil took on the name “Jersey” Devil - prior to that, it was more commonly referred to as the “Leeds” Devil. I do think it’s possible that both states have these creatures roaming around, and that it’s possible that they originated from the same source.

30) Anything else you'd like to add ? Thanks for the opportunity to share some thoughts on the subject! (below left, still from August 15th 2000 'hunt' filmed for 'Scariest Places On Earth'.

Laura K. Leuter Devil Hunters President


Thursday, 10 January 2008

Phantom Black Dogs


An informative website of the 'black dog' enigma in the UK but it's interesting to note the amount of UK researchers unaware of the black dog phenomenon worldwide. In fact, the hellhound phenomenon has become almost very British with regards to its theory/coverage and commentary but the reality is far stranger as 'Monster!' proves, with sightings of varying hounds taking place from the U.S.A. to Iraq.


Tuesday, 8 January 2008

A big thanks to APSR RADIO

The 2 hour show on 8/9 th January was fantastic promotion for the book http://www.apsrradio.com and without doubt the best interview as yet to have been conducted, so a big thanks to Old Hip, and look forward to coming on again...

Ghostly Talk Radio

Neil will appear on http://www.ghostlytalk.com/on Sunday 13th January, check the website for the schedule.

The amazing show conducted by Scott L and Doug can be heard here: http://www.ghostlytalk.com/node/1519

Thanks for a great show guys

Friday, 4 January 2008

Tuesday, 1 January 2008

Tuesday After Twilight

Neil will be appear on the Tuesday After Twilight radio show on 29th January 2008. http://www.tuesdayaftertwilight.com

MONSTER! wins Cryptomundo award!!!!!

MONSTER! is officially the top fortean cryptozoology book of 2007 according to Loren Coleman and the guys at Cryptomundo.com : http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/cz-books-2007/

Each year awards are dished out by the crypto guys and it was an unbelievable honour to receive a congratulatory email from Loren Coleman confirming this.

"Neil
You are welcome, and it is well-deserved. Keep up your work with good humor, as I think our fields overlap nicely. (Few people today realize that my 1978 book, Creatures of the Outer Edge, was, of course, all about what you call "zooforms.")

Best wishes

Loren"