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Understanding Cryptozoology

Bernard Heuvelmans founded the International Society of Cryptozoology (ISC) in 1982. As a philosopher of science, he never questioned whether Cryptozoology was properly a ParaScience or a pseudoscience.

Heuvelmans was a Belgian/French scientist, explorer, researcher and writer. He was born in Le Havre in northwestern France in 1916 and was raised in Belgium. He earned a doctorate in Zoology from the Free University of Brussels at the age of 23. Heuvelmans had been interested in zoological oddities for some time but he credits a 1948 Saturday Evening Post article by Ivan T. Sanderson with inspiring him to become deeply determined to explore more fully his interest in unknown animals. He wrote a book "On the track of Unidentified Animals" in 1955, published in two volumes. It has been translated into over 20 languages. Heuvelmans wrote many other books and articles, only a few of which have been translated into English. His works sold well among general audiences but saw little attention from mainstream scientists and experts.

As he continued to research into these unknown animals, he saw the need to "give a name to the totally new discipline in zoology my research implied. That is how I coined the word 'cryptozoology', the science of hidden animals." He and Ivan T. Sanderson worked together to establish Cryptozoology and to give it some guidelines and definition.

Cryptozoology is divided into two subfields.

A. Deals with creatures of myths, and sagas [i.e. dragons, sirens, etc.]
B. deals with animals that are either thought to be extinct or that have yet to be discovered.

These animals are called cryptids.

There are four kinds of cryptids. Although it is still considered a parascience, the methodology of Cryptozoology mirrors that of zoology. The cryptids are subdivided into the following 4 groups.

1. Unidentified Animals : These deviate from known and identified animals to the extent that they cannot be categorized according to any existing zoological system. Examples include Mothman and bigfoot.

2. Potentially extinct animals : These are organisms that are considered to be extinct already, like some forms of modern reptiles.

3. Animals that are identical to familiar types : These appear to be a known animal except for one or two differences, perhaps due to mutation or parentage that is a mixture of more common animal varieties.

4. Known animals found in unusual places : This would be like the panthers reported in Great Britain or the Odenwald region of southern Germany. It is important to discover if these sightings are a genuine population, rather than simply an animal that has escaped from captivity.
 


Bernard Heuvelmans is often called The Father of Cryptozoology.

 

Nancy

"I'll spark the thought; what you do with it is up to you."
 "Those that know, need no further proof. Those that don't, should not demand it from others, but seek it for themselves."
 

This Post By TCC Team Member Nancy Marietta. Nancy has had a lifelong interest in the paranormal and cryptids. Nancy is also a published author and her book, The Price of war, has been met with great reviews.



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