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What Happened to Cryptozoology?

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posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 02:35 PM
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Let's play a word association game. I say a word, and what comes to mind. The word is cryptozoology.

What did that make you think of? Chances are, it's something along the lines of Bigfoot, Nessie, a dinosaur walking around in some rainforest, maybe Mothman.

The question I'm asking is thus: within the field of cryptozoology, what happened to the cryptids? The real cryptids. Not the ones everyone has heard about, but the ones no one has heard of. The ones that scientists discover constantly in the rainforest. The ones that have been discounted to the point that they become mythical or legendary, and we have forgotten about them even as a story.

I'd like to post a few related questions as well. Why do we choose these specific cryptids, such as Bigfoot or Nessie or dinosaurs, to discuss most often? What do we consider necessary evidence for a cryptid to even be discussed- is any evidence necessary?

I'm often asked- how do I get my ideas for my threads? Where do I find these cryptids? It doesn't take an expert at Google searching to find the information. But the truth is that many people aren't finding true cryptozoology interesting anymore.

What is interesting these days is debate. Hoaxes. Paranormal (which has been brought into the entire upright primate or hominid debate with Bigfoots and Yetis, and even in some cases with lake or sea cryptids such as Nessie). People like to talk about what they know, and most people have an opinion on Loch Ness. Nessie is THE most well known aquatic cryptid. Probably the second most well-known cryptid ever. Ever. Second only to Bigfoot-types, I believe. That's my own personal opinion, globally. This list from Top Tenz (www.toptenz.net...) disagrees me, although I think I'm right.

The difference is that when people think of upright hominid-type hair-covered man, they think of Bigfoot. And Yeti. And Sasquatch. When people think of lake monsters, they think of Nessie. Bigfoot-types have been reported more globally. Lake monsters, although there are more reports (possibly), they are isolated to specific bodies of water. Ogopogo. Chessie. This lake monster. That lake monster. But Nessie seems to come to mind first. It's had lots of controversy, but honestly, why pick this specific lake-based cryptid over the hundreds of other. It's because of the hoaxes. The evidence that has been proven fake. Not only does it draw unnecessary attention to a cryptid that is not supported as much as many may think, but it takes attention away from all of the other cryptids. I guarantee that if expeditions had spent the time and money on research in other lakes where cryptids have been reported, they would have found something. It's that simple. The geographical features of the loch are poor. We don't find out anything new when Nessie is brought up. And honestly there are many other worthy aquatic cryptids out there.

People like Bigfoot because they feel better than a hairy-ape-man. If they could, they would capture him and study him. (I'm using the term him very loosely.) I've actually read scientists talk about hominid cryptids in such hypocritical ways as to say "Wow, they have a language and a culture. How noble. Let's put them in cages and study them." Skeptics like Bigfoot because there is a history of hoaxes, and since the public's posterchild for the cryptozoological movement has been proven a hoax in some reports, it is all a hoax. The other perspective seems to be paranormal. "If these guys are around, they're psychic or this or that." I think this reduces cryptozoology as a subject, but that might just be me.

That is why chupacabras, Mothmen, and Jersey Devils are so popular. They have strong paranormal legends behind them, with little physical proof. They have the same form of sightings as those who see phantoms. Chupacabras are a little different because they have previously been identified as dogs. But they are mostly legends or myths. The Umdhlebi trees. They may have been based on something, like a bat, or a dog, or a tree that gives off toxins. But it warps into a huge tale, and people get excited about a story that is blown out of proportion. This happens with cryptid sightings, but it seems to be very common with paranormal-linked cryptids.

Dinosaurs. In my last thread, I discussed this in some detail. But evidence for the existence of dinosaur-like cryptids is fueling the Young Creationism movement in Christianity. What puzzles me is why use the word dinosaur. Horseshoe crabs are dinosaurs technically. So are sponges. Really, they've been around ages. Why not talk about herpetological cryptids. This way, you can see what's actually lurking around without using words that will attract or detract people like "dinosaur." It's fine. It's just not accurate. Some people have ulterior motives for supporting the existence of these cryptids, and that makes me question how many people are out there bending sighting reports and things.

Cryptobotany is something I've just touched on in my threads, and the interest level confused me. There is so much room for research in this area, and yet we still gravitate towards the "popular" cryptids.

If you know what a KaweKawau is, I applaud you. But chances are that you don't. I didn't until about an hour ago. It's a cryptid. It's not like the cryptids that people seem to find interesting. But it's a huge gecko cryptid that we have discovered a specimen of in the basement of a museum. It's real.

But people will always care more about the popular cryptids, while the important ones evade pop culture and exist only through tribal sightings and stories. Yes, it takes discretion to tell what is a myth and what is a real sighting. But in many cases, cryptids have shown up and been real. It would of course be a huge deal if someone just finds a Bigfoot, or Nessie. But people have already found interesting cryptids, sightings are being reported everyday, but most people will knock off a report from anyone who isn't a popular scientist.

We need to branch out. We don't know all the cryptids that are out there, and we don't even know a tenth of the ones that have names and lists of sightings. People stop caring if it doesn't live near them, or if the only evidence is from 1531, or if the only evidence is a lizard in a jar.

Are you really interested in cryptozoology? Or are you in it for the debate, the popular beliefs, and the cryptids that only affect your own lives?

My rant is done. I'll be posting more lesser-known cryptids soon. You know. Ones that aren't already posted about a trillion times. Watching this thread sink down the "recent posts" page really just cracks me up.

So really though, what does cryptozoology mean to you?

[edit on 6/2/2009 by ravenshadow13]




posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:09 PM
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Yeah, There has definitely been a lacking amount of threads created about the topic here at ATS.

I am interested. I will discuss it with you!



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:09 PM
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I applaud your thread, and I've flagged it too. I feel that this will become one little hot potato of a topic.

I'm relatively 'new' to the whole cryptid area of the great mysteries of the world, although I have been aware of them from an early age, though I was more into ghosts and UFOs then. I guess I latched onto the more popular well known cryptids, and that formed the basis of my current love for hidden and undiscovered creatures. I guess every one has to have a starting point, and the well known ones are the easiest and most obvious platform to begin in this field.

I've slowly started building up a collection of literature on the subject, and thinking about it now, there seems to be a glut of books that cover the sasquatches, the Mothmen, the Yeti's, the lake monsters etc etc. I am beginning to wonder whether or not it's just to make an easy buck.

I myself am keen to learn, so I will definitely be keeping a watch on this thread.

One question you may be able to help with. I heard or read a very fleeting reference to a cat that had wings, and this was not the one that was in the papers from China, this was different. If you can shed any light on that, I'd be most grateful!

Maybe we should get a Loveland Frog thread going...



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:10 PM
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I like cryptozoology a lot, as a kid I was always fascinated by things like the giant squid and thunderbirds.

I visit cryptomundo.com everday to see if there is any news I might be interested in.


With such a big world and all the spy satellites surrounding it, it is still possible for some creatures to escape our attention.

The fact that every year still new species are found prove to me that there are still unknown creatures and they are still evolving.

Who knows what still has to be discovered?



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:11 PM
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reply to post by Piranha
 


Yayy!!
You just joined recently though? Things used to be different. It used to be much worse, actually. It's just a question of not repeating material at this point.

It's hard work and some members work really hard in the forum. There are a few names I can think of off the top of my head. And a lot of great crypto contributors stopped posting things as much as they used to.

But yay for new discussion buddies!



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:14 PM
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reply to post by Genus_Unknown
 


www.abovetopsecret.com...

See my point?

Hmm... cats with wings? I will look into that. Generally animals with wings don't have front legs, hind legs, and wings. Because wings are a mutation of front legs, you know? I will check it out though.

It's the same sort of argument with centaurs and things. It would mean they have six limbs...

Some people use it to make an easy buck. Or make a big deal about things. But there are so many lesser known cryptids that no one could possibly benefit from that I don't think that is the case.

Plus, I consider finding new species to be a part of cryptozoology. And that happens constantly!!

[edit on 6/2/2009 by ravenshadow13]



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:14 PM
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Hrmm, what does cryptozoology mean to me?

I think bigfoot, Nessie, chupacabra(sp?) are just a very small fraction of that study. There is just a mystique that surrounds them that makes them a popular item to market and make money. Chances are they are myths if they haven't gotten any evidence to support the reports by now then there is probably an explanation, no matter how bizarre it may be.

I feel that those things have already transcended cryptozoology and could fit into their own categories. I feel that cryptozoology should remain a study of unknowns that are new finds that haven't had enough time to be studied and not enough research done to properly figure out if it is real or not.

I hope that makes sense.

[edit on 2-6-2009 by Hastobemoretolife]



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:16 PM
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reply to post by ravenshadow13
 


Yeah, I joined just about 2 weeks ago.

I don't know why, but it seems to be an avoided topic here on ATS, despite the fact it is an "Alternative Topics" website.

Anyway, indeed. I am looking forward to many discussions with you, and hopefully spreading the same attitude around ATS.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:17 PM
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reply to post by Grey Magic
 


I've always liked the cephalopods, too. Cryptomundo is possibly the best site out there. Loren Coleman is, IMO, the best cryptozoologist around. For sure in the USA. England has some really great guys, too.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:17 PM
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reply to post by ravenshadow13
 


Nice rant
and TRUE, sometimes sadly some topics that are more "visually appealing and provocative" but likely untrue get much more attention that the real ones. This happens not only in this forum (but a lot here) but also in UFO/Aliens. But in the end it is apparent which members are posting the real and legitimate information. I admit that I strayed away from crypto for sometime but now since I see the great work being done by members like you and Fooffstarr I think I will visit this forum a whole lot more. This forum was at one time full of rubbish but apparently not anymore. So keep up the good work.


Star and flag BTW....



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:19 PM
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reply to post by Hastobemoretolife
 


I agree with you. That's what I included in my OP, pretty much. I also think that if a cryptid does become overrun with hoaxes and rumors about it, that the spotlight should be taken off for awhile while the experts continue their research.

People think that making fake models and wearing ape suits helps things and it doesn't. It doesn't even get people money anymore, it gets them momentary fame.

We're beyond Fuji mermaids.

I should just put that in my signature, hahaha!!



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:22 PM
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reply to post by Piranha
 


@Piraha- Well, welcome! I won't try to lure you into becoming a cryptomaniac like myself, but it is my favorite forum and I hope to see you around in here some more!!!

@krog- You too! You ask really amazing questions and it keeps me on my toes. I love talking, haha, I love the sound of my... words on the screen. But when threads get ignored for lack of interest, the whole forum suffers. But when people ask questions, we learn more, and deny the ignorance.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:31 PM
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Originally posted by ravenshadow13
reply to post by Grey Magic
 


I've always liked the cephalopods, too. Cryptomundo is possibly the best site out there. Loren Coleman is, IMO, the best cryptozoologist around. For sure in the USA. England has some really great guys, too.


I remember that I used to have an Usborne book from the 70's called 'monsters' which had a wide selection of cryptids peppered in with some obvious myths, but I used to be so fascinated with that book. So much so I hunted down another copy about a year or so ago. It's slightly updated, but i'm hoping that when my 16 month old son grows up, he'll follow in dad's footsteps. I guess Cryptozoology to me means that chance, that possibility of some fantastical animals being discovered, and the rarely seen ones becoming more prevalent. I was fascinated with Giant Squid when I was a kid, I didn't even know they existed officially until a few years later, so you can imagine my excitement.

Loren Coleman is certainly an excellent cryptozoologist, and another favorite of mine is Jonathan Downes in the UK. His methods are a little unorthodox, but he certainly is a character!



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 03:33 PM
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reply to post by Genus_Unknown
 


Part of the reason I chose to go to school where I did is because of Loren Coleman, I could take classes for a term where he teaches.

I started being interested in cryptozoology ever since I was little. Zoology since always, cryptozoology since about 6 or 7. I used to like Bigfoot the best, then Nessie. Now my favorites are anything aquatic, but that's my marine biology side talking, too.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:00 PM
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Originally posted by ravenshadow13
reply to post by Hastobemoretolife
 


We're beyond Fuji mermaids.

I should just put that in my signature, hahaha!!


What are you talking about? I have a Fuji mermaid swimming around in my aquarium right now. Her name is Ariel.


But, yes we are beyond that kind of stuff. Honestly though I think for the most part I think we could classify reports of odd creatures just based off the descriptions given.

Take for instance that crazy worm of death over in Mongolia, I forgot what the name of it is. If somebody gives a description of something that is 8 foot long centipede like and shoots acid at you then you could pretty much discount that because I would think something that big would leave evidence maybe not evidence of what it is, but there would be more than tracks. Huge holes in the ground could easily be explained by natural phenomenon.

There are somethings that fit right into the study of it though such as the Tasmanian Tiger, we know those were real at some point. And real study could be initiated to see if they aren't extinct. Chances they probably are.

Then again when you start getting into that debate you start getting off into other topics such as evolution and the likes.

I like cryptozoology though as long as what is being reported has a half way decent chance of actually existing or existed at some point. When people start going off into the deep end like that thread you linked to earlier. Somethings just don't make any sense, and we know for the most part out of species that we have discovered newly, so far, can fit into the animal categories that we already know. Until an actual specimen of some uncatalogued animal actually is available for study then sightings in the likes could be anything.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:07 PM
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reply to post by Hastobemoretolife
 


On the bright side, this is the cryptozoological and mythical beasts forum. If it's not real, it's mythical.

It's kind of a bummer because sometimes it makes the real things look fake. But I tend to trust people. I trust their reports. I posted that thread about "Evil Trees" the Umdhlebi, and we actually talked it out in the thread and came up with some realistic conclusions.

There's no line where the deep end starts. So I'm kind of toeing it. I want to give all the cryptids a fair chance.

EDIT- And ulterior motives make me mad. Really mad. It wasn't before my research on the other thread that I realized people were using cryptozoology to disprove evolution.

That's like... sabotage.

[edit on 6/2/2009 by ravenshadow13]



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:21 PM
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reply to post by ravenshadow13
 


Oh for sure, well Cryptozoologly is mythical creatures. It would be pretty arrogant to say we know everything about everything. For sure they all deserve their fair shot though.

Its cool to read stories about things that are very out of the ordinary, but I think when you start to challenge reality is when you start going off into the deep end.

But then again that gets off into other debate topics such as what actually constitutes as reality. I fully believe in Aliens and I have some stories that I would rather not get into, but people would find them as off in the deep end, but I swear on my life they actually happened.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:24 PM
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reply to post by Hastobemoretolife
 


An issue I've run into here on ATS is people disputing sightings from other cultures. People say "Oh they're so third world and tribal and don't know what they're talking about."

That's wrong. It needs to stop. And I won't tolerate it anymore, haha.

Cryptozoology cannot be an ethnocentric study.



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:37 PM
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Great topic.

I think through the hard work of members dedicated to this forum that the whole spectrum of cryptozoology is beginning to be shown.

Not just the famous and the fantastic, but the realistic and the intriguing too.

Keep up the good work mate



posted on Jun, 2 2009 @ 04:41 PM
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reply to post by ravenshadow13
 


Evolution and Creationism are both theories and should be treated as such, there is nothing to "disprove" about them. They are just theories. Although one has a little more validity than they other but none the less they are still theories, therefore there is everything to prove and nothing to disprove.

That's crazy people belittling people in third world countries because they are poor. Poor does not equal stupid. Although people will reach to spin things no matter how ridiculous to fit their beliefs. Which also fits into what you were saying about ulterior motives.





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