Sunday, 29 June 2014

Karl Shuker on water elephants of the Congo

Karl Shuker's blog has a recent post on water elephants of the Congo, which gives a plug to "British cryptozoological investigator Matt Salusbury in his extremely comprehensive book Pygmy Elephants (2013)" Dr Shuker feels that "if this cryptid has been described accurately in those sightings... its morphological differences from Africa's typical, predominantly terrestrial elephants are, I feel, much too profound" for it to be any member "Africa's modern-day Loxodonta species" and that it would have to be something altogether different, possibly some much more ancient relatives of the modern elephants, long thought extinct.

Fortean Time's reviews editor confirms that Karl is on the case with a review of Pygmy Elephants, which will appear shortly in FT.

Karl is also on the case with his own "enigmatic but seemingly long-lost specimen, the Rothschild-Neuville mystery tusk" and will publish something on this in his blog soon. Followers of the Pygmy Elephants Twitter feed will know I am also on the case with this, and will present a talk on it at this year's Weird Weekend. There's a lot of crowdsourced assistance coming in from the zoology and paleontology communities, particularly on museum accession logs.

Monday, 23 June 2014

Book signing at Weird Weekend 2014

There will be a book signing of Pygmy Elephants at 1pm on Sunday 17 August, squeezed in straight after my Weird Weekend talk (12 noon-1pm). This is on the "tooth of enigmatic origin" found at Addis Ababa ivory market by Baron Maurice de Rothschild's East Africa expedition of 1904. (Image above - for non-commerical purposes.)

For background to the talk, see here. The enigmatic tooth - thought by some to resemble the tusk of the extinct prehistoric elephant relatives the dinotheres - is touched on briefly in Pygmy Elephants, but will be dealt with in much more detail in my WW talk. (Weird Weekend's at a different venue this year.)