Tuesday, April 24, 2012
New Mokèlé-mbèmbé Expedition
A young Missouri man has turned to the Internet in search of investors for his expedition into the remote jungles of Africa seeking to document undiscovered flora and fauna. That is not so unusual, but one of the creatures he hopes to find is: a living dinosaur.
The region Stephen McCullah, the organizer of the expedition, has chosen to explore is the reputed home of the Mokèlé-mbèmbé, a dinosaur-like creature said to be up to 35 feet long (11 meters), with brownish-gray skin and a long, flexible neck. Many locals believe that it lives in the caves it digs in riverbanks, and that the beast feeds on elephants, hippos and crocodiles.
McCullah posted his pitch on Kickstarter.com asking for $27,000 in donations so that he and his friends can launch the Newmac Expedition, "one of the first expeditions in this century with the goal of categorizing plant and animal species in the vastly unexplored Republic of the Congo." The preliminary four-man venture is slated to launch June 26.
Though the team members largely lack formal education in biology or zoology, they "anticipate discovering hundreds of new insect, plant and fish species during the course of our research. There is also the legitimate hope of discovering many reptile and mammalian species. We have received reports...in the region of eyewitnesses seeing canine-sized tarantulas, large river dwelling sauropods [dinosaurs], and a species of man-eating fish," McCullah wrote on the website.
Never mind dinosaurs, which have been extinct for millions of years, for a moment. Finding a spider the size of a dog would be remarkable enough, as the largest-known tarantula, the Goliath birdeater, lives in South America and has a leg span of "only" a foot.
When asked if he really expected to discover monster tarantulas and dinosaurs, McCullah told Life's Little Mysteries, “We don't necessarily expect to find concrete evidence of Mokèlé-mbèmbé (or any other creatures claimed to have been seen in the region) on the first expedition, but we believe there's a good chance during that initial three months that we will find hard evidence of its presence in the area if it is there."
Even if McCullah's team finds that evidence, most cryptozoologists (those who search for unknown or hidden animals) believe that only a live or dead specimen would convince mainstream scientists that animals such as Bigfoot or Mokèlé-mbèmbé exist — the blurry photos and videos, footprints and eyewitness reports that make up the vast majority of the evidence for these creatures are simply not enough. McCullah and his team will need specialized equipment to capture these animals — and a living dinosaur would require a pretty big net.
"We are in the process of looking at live methods for capture of large animals," McCullah said. "We will be attempting to bring a tranquilizer rifle, but there are many issues and unknowns we will have to overcome to subdue an animal like Mokèlé-mbèmbé with a tranquilizer gun."In his Kickstarter pitch, McCullahnoted that there have been several previous expeditions to the Congolese jungles in search of large unknown animals (including Mokèlé-mbèmbé), and yet they all failed to find good evidence. He believes that his group's youth and enthusiasm will help them succeed where others have failed. The arsenal of cutting-edge technology they plan to bring should help as well: "We will be utilizing satellite images, trail cameras, a Thermal camera to track animals, and sonar to search through the murky waters." - yahoo
Drums Along the Congo: On the Trail of Mokele-Mbembe, The Last Living Dinosaur
Extreme Expeditions: Travel Adventures Stalking the World's Mystery Animals
'UFO War', Monolith Over Atascosa County, Texas
Night Sky Observation.
April 21, 2012 - Observation location is in Atascosa County, 500 feet Northwest from the corner of FM 2504 and Garden Drive. This location is between the township of Rossville, Texas (2.75 miles to the East) and the city of Devine, Texas (7.3 miles to the North East).
Observation time started at 8:45 PM Central time with clear night sky, no clouds, no moon, and very slight breeze from the East. Observer is facing magnetic south.
At 9:41 PM noted passenger airliner (the FAA required marker beacons and lights were clearly visible) approaching at a height about 20,000 to 25,000 feet Above Ground Level (AGL) flying from the San Antonio direction from the north and heading in a southwest direction, possible towards Lerado, Texas.
As soon as I lost visual on the passenger airliner low into the southwest, I picked up a single, white, flash of light. The flash was just a little bigger then the size of a normal writing pen’s roundness as you would look at it dead on holding the pen at arm’s length. The flash brightness was about half the illumination as looking at present Jupiter’s brightness. I am guessing this flash originated at the height above the mention airliner’s flight path by 75,000 feet or 100,000 AGL.
The flash was approximately 70 degrees up from the southeast horizon and about 50 to 75 miles east of the passenger airliner’s flight path. Noted time at 9:46 PM and concentrated observation in direction of flash of light. Within a few seconds noted a second flash of light with the same characteristic and at the exact location of first flash.
About three to four seconds after the second flash of light witnessed a third and final flash of light. I did not see any kind of craft, yet the night sky was so clear I had no problem seeing the flash of lights.
Internet search for this kind of previous sighting comes from Ufologist Mr. Ed Grimsley UFO Wars, this flash of light looked a lot like the UFO distress maker bacon lights as seen under Night Vision Goggle (NVG) night sight equipment.
This night sky was very clear with Orion’s Belt to my right and the Big Dipper to my back yet there was no more light flashing from the southwest.
Starting about 10:05 PM I witness about six little white lights moving across the night sky; two from the east heading west, two from the south heading north, one from the northeast heading southwest, and one west heading southwest. All moved with different time intervals between each other to span about 8 to 10 minutes. All had a non-direct flight path and some moved in a slight ziz-zag motion. All six little white lights were passing higher above the passenger airliner’s flight path and possibly higher than the first mention flashing white light, say at 150,000 feet AGL.
Approximately 10:25 PM I witnessed a spectacular fiery meteorite entry into earth atmosphere. The meteorite burned red, yellow, orange, and blue at the core but had a gray burn trail. The meteor entered directly above from the West and deteriorated to the East, and the visible burn trail was about the length of six full moons placed side by side.
10:32 PM directly above noted a second set of flashing white lights lower in altitude and closer to my position. Again just three flashes with about 3 to 4 seconds between flash. Each flash became bigger and closer down from the sky and on the third flash, I was able to see a monolith between the source of the light and my observation point, See Fig 1. The monolith could have been producing the light or it had flown in to intercept the falling object that was producing the flash of lights. If we use an estimated height of 100,000 feet AGL, the monolith was the size of 1/8 inch in length (0.125) and 1/16 inch wide (0.0625) as seen from arm’s length at ground level or the monolith was about 1,040 feet in length and 520 feet wide.
I was so amazed in what I had just witnessed, I do not know how much time had passed when suddenly a white laser beam type light shot out from the exact location of the monolith in a slight arc path towards the northeast direction. The beam shot out for a short distance no longer the diameter of our full moon and seem to be aimed towards outer space.
After an additional hour of observation, no other sky activity noted.
The following nights observation (April 22 and 23) I was only able to see the mentioned 9:41/42 PM passenger airliner flyby and a few small moving white lights. - MUFON CMS
True UFO Accounts: From the Vaults of FATE Magazine
Texas UFO Tales: from Denison 1878 to Stephenville 2008
Woman's Torso Sent To BJ's Wholesale Headquarters Accidentally
Part of a dead woman's body was mistakenly sent to the BJ's Wholesale headquarters in Westborough, Mass. on Friday -- all because of an itty bitty shipping error, WBZ NewsRadio reported.
The torso was headed for a research lab in Florida, but a misprinted label sent it to horrified employees at the home office of the members-only wholesale giant.
"They started opening the package and they saw the description of what they were opening, that it was a torso of a female," Westborough police Sgt. Jonathan Kalagher told the station. "They never saw the torso. They saw there was packaging and some type of gel. They immediately notified their supervisor."
The body wasn't damaged in the flop because it was marked "perishable," and was handled properly, the Milford Daily News reported.
The company then made arrangements to have the box shipped to the rightful lab. - THP
Meteor Explosion, Fireball Over California-Nevada - 4/22/12
Astronomers say a loud explosion heard across a large swath of Nevada and California on Sunday morning was likely caused by a meteor, just after the peak of an annual meteor shower.
The sound of the explosion around 8am prompted a flood of calls to law enforcement agencies on both sides of the Sierra Nevada in the two states.
Observers in the Reno-Sparks area of Nevada reported seeing a fireball at about 8 a.m. local time, accompanied or followed by a thunderous clap that experts said could have been a sonic boom from the meteor or the sound of it breaking up high over the Earth.
Some people in the two states reported seeing a fireball streak across the sky at the same time.
Being daylight, most of the reports are of a white object with blue and green being most mentioned secondary colors. The average brightness reported by witnesses was between that of the sun and the light produced by a full moon. While this is most likely a random event, there is a possibility this fireball was a member of the Lyrid meteor shower.
"From the reports, I have no doubt it was a fireball," said Robert Lunsford of the Geneseo, N.Y.-based American Meteor Society. "It happens all the time, but most are in daytime and are missed. This one was extraordinarily bright in the daylight."
A fireball is a meteor that is larger than normal. Most meteors are only the size of tiny pebbles. A meteor the size of a softball can produce light equivalent to the full moon for a short instant. The reason for this is the extreme velocity at which these objects strike the atmosphere. Even the slowest meteors are still traveling at 10 miles per SECOND, which is much faster than a speeding bullet. Fireballs occur every day over all parts of the Earth. It is rare though for an individual to see more than one or two per lifetime as they can also occur during the day (when the blinding sun can obscure them), or on a cloudy night, or over the ocean where there is no one to witness them. Observing during one of the major annual meteor showers can increase your chance of seeing another bright meteor.
Dan Ruby of the Fleischmann Planetarium at the University of Nevada, Reno, says the reports indicate the meteor broke up above Earth somewhere over the Sierra southwest of Reno. When debris enters the atmosphere it creates explosions similar to the sonic boom of a fast-moving aeroplane, according to meteorologists.
'Phantoms and Monsters'