Friday, August 31, 2012

Joining the Monster Dash

Well folks, I was going to just report on the MONSTER DASH Zombie Run at Ritter Springs Park on Oct. 6th, but now it looks like I'll be running in the event! Last Tuesday I received a phone call from a local doctor who is gathering a few science professionals and students to form a small Zombie Response Team. Even though I am not fully convinced of the existence of zombies, I have joined them to start training for the race and in unarmed zombie response skills. I'll let you know when I find out more about the truth behind all this zombie craziness.  Whatever happens, this should be a great fundraiser for The Kitchen.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Further Frog Frenzy

Since last week's post we have been inundated with messages from folks concerned with the possibility that frog sculptures in neighborhood gardens might represent some kind of frog-related cryptic activity. We are happy to report that most of these frog statues are perfectly normal garden decorations and are no cause for alarm.  Unlike the huge, spooky stone frog described before, these garden statues simply depict frogs in whimsical fashion.  For example, the photo at the bottom does not show a multi-headed, multi-limbed mutant frog as one reader feared.  Rather, this statue depicts three frogs engaging in what amphibian scientists refer to as a "frog conga line dance". This rare behavior is only exhibited by frogs when they hear a strong syncopation before the fourth beat of the measure.
- second photo submitted by S.H. of Springfield MO

Friday, August 17, 2012

The Great Frog of Mystery

There are times when the search for strange and unusual creatures leads one to discoveries beyond the scope of Cryptozoology and into the realm of the truly strange.  Just such an event occurred this week as we were driving into Springfield Missouri.  Just before crossing Lake Springfield, we caught sight of what appeared to be a giant frog sitting in an empty expanse near the U.S. 65 44 mile marker.  After parking the car and making a short jog across the marshy ground I came upon the object - a hauntingly strange idol-like stone statue of a frog well over 4 feet tall!  Who created it, and why was it put there?  Is it a religious icon of some strange ancient cult?  Could it be related to intelligent inhuman creatures such as the infamous Loveland Frogs?  Perhaps this is a case for the Ghostbusters of the Ozarks or macabre maven Uncle Gregory!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Mini Monster Catfish

When I was a young boy I first heard the tale of the giant catfish that lived on the upstream side of Kissick Dam at James River Power Station at Lake Springfield. According to the story, a diver performing an inspection had seen a catfish the size of a Volkswagen Beetle lurking at the base of the dam. Later, as an adult, I heard many other stories of giant catfish at other dams around the nation. Those tales told of Buick sized catfish and truck sized catfish. In fact, it seems that every dam in the country had its own giant catfish legend. So why is our giant catfish smaller than everyone else's giant catfish?

The fact is, the dam at James River Power Station is actually rather small. Unlike larger dams that are used to generate hydroelectric power, our dam simply collects water to be used to generate steam in our coal-fired power plant. It makes sense that a smaller dam would be home to a smaller giant catfish. Still, it must be a very cozy home for our monster fish. Water heated by the power plant is reissued into the lake close to the dam, making it nice and toasty warm during the winter.

Please note the warning in the second picture. Do not release any non-native creatures into Lake Springfield. We would not want them to grow to Volkswagen size, would we?

Friday, August 3, 2012

Our New Mini Microscope

Various kinds of scientific equipment are used in the search for Urban Cryptids.  Our most recent acquisition for use in the field is a brand new 60X power portable digital camera miniature microscope - more than powerful enough to study Skunk Ape hair samples and other "spoor" without having to return to the laboratory. The accompanying photo shows how it can zero in on the tiniest details.

Now, if we could only find some hair...