Monday, June 29, 2009

Cryptozoological Thoughts

If you have read my posts on the Burrunjor in Australia and the apparent Apatosaurus in the Congo you will understand that I am sympathetic to the probability of these animals been real.

I got there from been essentially dismissive of these observations to having a deep appreciation for all data however acquired. What led me there was my study of the Sasquatch phenomena. What convinced me was the presence of approximately an unbelievable ten thousand good eye witness reports. By the way, UFO sightings head over 100,000, although they are mostly lights in the sky.

The Sasquatch led me to reformulate my thinking in terms of dealing with eyewitness information and it is covered in the first two chapters of my manuscript ‘Paradigms Shift’. The process also informed my approach regarding all such reports.

First, the reports invariably describe a finite set of observed characteristics that are generally repeated. This largely describes the nature of the likely animal. A Sasquatch, for instance, and it is presently our best observed and reported such animal, is clearly a clever primate at least fifty percent more massive than humanity on average and who is also a nocturnal omnivore. That is a pretty powerful statement.

What I learned then is that it is absolutely necessary to also characterize the environmental niche occupied. The moment that you do that it becomes very clear why we have trouble getting samples or seeing the animal in more congenial surroundings.

In the case of the Sasquatch, it is clear that this primate is specifically adapted to living in woodlands and operating nocturnally when taking down game. This is similar to the niche of the cougar and both animals operate solitary and with similar ranges. In fact if it were not for the fact that our dogs are able to tree cougars, the cougar would be just as mysterious today. In fact the Sasquatch will turn out to be more successful because they do not hunt humans unlike the cougar.

Therefore, it is necessary to isolate the ecological niche. When we did that for our Australian theropod, it became clear that this predator was a swamp dweller that had evolved to hunt crocodiles and was very similar in expected life cycle. That led me directly to a major swamp in Arnhem Land in Australia. And it all fit together.

Then of course, I was drawn back to reports out of the Congo that I saw decades ago and did not take too seriously. I have now dug through some additional reposts from the Congo and I am seeing further reports again suggesting a range of Dawn Age reptiles that we actually recognize. If they are extant at all, the Congo is where they must reside.

What I have learned to appreciate though is that the locales are huge in their own right and are unpopulated by man for some incredibly good reasons. Like, how do you keep hungry crocodiles away? What is also not understood is that the areal extent compares to France and has maintained a Dawn Age swamp rich ecology since then. Add in the simple fact that these water loving reptiles are active hunters at night to avoid overheating in the sun and we have a challenging hunt on our hands.

So, even though it seems hard to believe, it is clearly possible for the chief predators of the crocodiles and their associated kin to be still extant in this particular region. I hope that I have opened a few minds to this phenomenon.

The Eyeball Assumption

One aspect of the hunt for rare and elusive animals needs to be discussed. We have a finite number of trained observers for niches that demand thousands. For that reason alone it will take decades to sort out the many dozens of known witness reports and it will always be easier to simply bad mouth the witness.

Let me share a tale. I grew up on farm land in Midwest Ontario. This land included many open fields as well as a modest river valley cleared but not cultivated, a strip of varying woodland from which all remaining mature trees had been harvested over the past century and an evergreen tree farm. This was a pretty friendly environment for small game at least. At the time, deer had been hunted out.

During the times in which the land was not bound with snow, I was able to spend a couple of hours almost every day not a school day wandering the woods and hedgerows. In the process I identified many birds and every weed native to Ontario listed in the government manual. Over the years I saw plenty of rabbits and groundhogs as might be expected.

When it came to everything else, it was a very different story. Over a decade I saw a fox several times, a deer once, a flock of grouse once when my dog startled them, a possible bob cat once, a swamp hawk once. So in exchange for a couple of thousands of hours of effort and observation, my reward was pretty paltry. I am hardly an unskilled observer either.

Obviously, a walk in the woods does not cut it at all. Additionally we now know that all animals avoid contact. A web cam placed on a game trail pick up a virtual traffic jam once the humans have left.

Our natural assumption that enough folks have seen the ground and would have seen the animals is wrong as hell.

There are dozens of obscure observations of creditable strange animals, including some very famous ones, which need to be meticulously thought out as to habitat and likely behavior. These need then to be set up for camera traps. That is how we will eventually prove up the Sasquatch. Only a remote camera will catch anything with its guard down.
We are now entering a new era in which the web cam will actually sort all this out finally.


tjcoop3 said...

Thank you. I have long felt as you that there is much yet unknown or undiscovered in this big world.

arclein said...

Yes, the really startling idea is they can be on land itself.

The great bear rainforest in British Columbia is easily the size of England and can be penetrated only on logging roads now rapidly disappearing. One could lose the entire fauna of england in that forest and never be seen.

There are many such places in the world and many are simply unpleasant to us.

The great bear rainforest has a comfortable climate. However, after you have crawled over three ten foot thick deadfalls in a row and slid into a sahel filled reentry in a steady rain, you may be forgiven a little skepticism.

obviously, if something wishes to avoid you,it can.

Now imagine what the Congo rainforest is like. There is a reason it remains unexplored

photinacook said...

There are some 2000 year old carvings of stegosaurs and several other dinosaurs in Mexico, near an old lake bed. There simply was not enough scientific sophistication then to make them so accurate. They must have been carved from life. Likely, there are large swamps in Mexico. Find them, and we can set those up with webcams easier than Australia or the Congo.

arclein said...

It is certainly apparent that the swamp ecological niche may be seriously under explored. The idea that any dinosaur could be still extant becomes plausible if we narrow our efforts to swamp based fauna.

The apatheosaurus was clearly a swamp dweller that subsisted on water plants. Reports appear to confirm this from dream time.

I find it more difficult to assign the stegosaurus to the same swamp except in the same mode as a hippo. If present, they may well have been hunted out.

There is actually plenty of compelling cultural evidence for the existence of contempraneous contact.

Whatever the case, the whole class of dinosaur may have needed to remain close to swamps in order to support reproduction and the rearing of their young. Particularly if the same young needed to enter water like young crocs and turtles.

tjcoop3 said...

For those interested here is a site with more info. Not sure about everything her but it looks worth exploring.

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