Friday, December 31, 2010

Creature Feature: Rusalka





The Rusalka is a mythical creature that hails from parts of Eastern Europe. While there are many variations to their descriptions, they are mostly considered to be young, water-dwelling females with powers that help them lure and entrap men and children. The Rusalka are often compared to mermaids, nymphs, and demons.

Some versions of the Rusalka are beautiful with glowing green eyes.  Others are down-right frightening to look at. Often they are thought to be fond of singing and sometimes their voices have magical powers that help them entice people to come to them. While their origins vary, often times they are believed to be trapped or lost souls or women who died in or near water.

Many cultures around the world have created very similar mythologies, and the Rusalka mythology is no exception. Women were once viewed as both mysterious and potentially dangerous creatures in many places in the world. It was easy for people to create stories about them. An unusual or independent woman could be written off as some sort of supernatural being. And if someone couldn’t explain something, the supernatural was used to justify it. And with the unexplainable came the legends we’ve come to love, like the mysterious ladies of the water, the Rusalka.


Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Weekly News Round-up 12/29/10

I hope everyone had a nice holiday! Here's this weeks paranormal news round-up. Enjoy!

This week everyone's been talking about a man in Kentucky who shot a strange animal that has been hanging ariund his property. Everybody has an opinion about what it actually is. Some claim it's a chupacabra while others are convinced it's just another wild animal with mange. AOL news has more about it here. What do you think it is?

Independent.com has a nice article on the history of the abominable snowman.

Here's a video of some strange lights spotted in El Paso. They are pretty strange looking!

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Have a Happy Holiday!

Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all those who are celebrating! I hope you all enjoy them!



Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Weekly News Round-up

Here's the latest news in the paranormal world!

This week AOL News featured an article about the theory that the sun could be used to communicate with aliens. Here's the link.

The Huffington Post discusses a study done on psychic abilities here. Looks like there's some good evidence for psi!

Ninemsn posted an article about a mysterious creature spotted in England. What do you think it is?


Also, there won't be a Creature Feature or monday article this week as I will taking a little break to celebrate Christmas. I hope everyone has a happy holiday!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Interview: Mark Collins

Today I’ve got an interview with Mark Collins to share with you. Mark Collins is the journalist who has been reporting on the paranormal M6 crash and the mysterious crash in Paris and has graciously agreed to answer some questions about the events surrounding the two incidents. If you haven’t been following this story you can check out the latest press release here, courtesy of PRLog.


Can you tell me a little about yourself?

I'm a freelance journalist based in Manchester
 
What publications have you written for?

I've written comment articles for VoloLegal, a legal networking site
and also placed many articles on behalf of clients across a broad
spectrum of subjects including construction, health and cosmetics
 
 How did you get involved in reporting the M6 crash?

My brother was traveling to London on the day it happened and was
about a quarter of a mile behind the accident, he alerted me to it and
also the fact he felt that if wasn't a straight forward crash.


There has been some speculation about Detective Silverton. Can you tell me a little about him?

I've only met him twice and spoke to him twice. What I know is that he
seems to be work for some special investigative team that specialises
in events of this type.


What do you think is connecting the crash in Paris and the M6 one in Birmingham?

I've been told by my source that there are similarities to both
incidents that are difficult to dismiss as purely coincidental. I also believe the suspect they have in custody is a common denominator in this as well.


 Do you think the events surrounding the incidents are paranormal in nature?

As a journalist you always try to look for the most rational, logical
explanations for all the events so as to eliminate the word
paranormal. In truth what I have seen and what I have been told and
reported on seems to challenge that assertion and there are certain
parts that make up the whole of these incidents that are unexplainable.

 
You’ve mentioned the use of a secret code. Is there anything you can tell us about the code? Do you think detectives are close to cracking it?

This is one aspect to the investigation that is very strange. On the
surface of it the code seems to be a load of gibberish that has no
relevance. But I understand the investigation team believe this is a
real world communication format that is being used; whether that
substantiates the rumours of paranormal activity or not is a separate
debate, but they are keen to crack it. They are looking at the relevance of some of the co-ordinates that are mentioned in it as well as the naming of certain metals from the periodical table.



Are there any plans to meet with Detective Silverton in the future?

Only when he contacts me. I have no way to contact him.

Do you believe the suspects involved to be human?

Definitely. There is no suggestion at all that the suspects are alien life forms.

 
Several people have mentioned seeing a bright light prior to the accident in Paris. Do you think the light is connected with the accident?

Yes. The only doubt I have is that the accident on the M6 was very
near to fireworks night, but the incident in Paris was not and also
too many people were reported to have seen this light. That coupled
with the alleged CCTV evidence suggests the light was very much part
of the incident.
 

Are you concerned that similar events may occur in the future?

I'm not concerned but I am sure it will happen again, although where
and when I have no idea as there appears to be no pattern to it.


If someone has information about the crash, what steps should they go through to
share the information?


The only thing I would suggest is to post onto sites like yours and
similar as I have not been asked or have any contact details to give
out. Detective Silverton made it clear that past calls for evidence in
these types of case meant they got too many hoaxers; something they are
keen to avoid.


Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions. If anyone has any information about either crash, please leave a comment.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Creature Feature: The Chupacabra




Few cryptids have gotten quite as much media attention as the Chupacabra. This mysterious creature has been terrifying people since the mid-nineties with its strange appearance and apparent love of blood. The legend started in Puerto Rico but has spread into Mexico and parts of the Southern United states.

There are two very different physical descriptions of the Chupacabra. The tradition Puerto Rican one is some sort of upright lizard with spikes down its back while the other is more similar to a hairless dog. Both versions are known for their ability to suck all the blood from their victims (usually livestock) and both are said to have large claws and fangs. A large number of farmers claim to fall victim to it after mysteriously loosing large numbers of animals during the night. The animals are found drained of blood with puncture wounds on the skin.

So what exactly is the Chupacabra? No one really knows. There were several creatures thought to be Chupacabras hanging around Texas several years ago but after testing it was discovered that the animals were simply coyotes or dogs suffering from mange. If you’ve seen photos of these creatures they are pretty scary looking-it’s easy to see how someone could mistake them for monsters. But there’s still little explanation for the original lizard-man Chupacabra stories. And there’s even less evidence to back them up. Maybe someday someone will come up with some compelling evidence for the Chupacabra but until then all we can do is wait. Or go looking for one (not recommended.)

If you are really interested in the Chupacabra legend there are several videos circling the internet claiming to show Chupacabras. While there’s no way to verify the credibility of the videos, they are fun to watch. Here are links to a couple of them.  Enjoy!

Chupacabra video

Cop camera Chupacabra

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Weekly News Round-up

Here's some of the top paranomal news for the week!


This week STV has an article about an old radio that seems to be playing vintage broadcasts-without any power. You can find the article here.

UFODIGEST.com posted an article about strange sightings occuring in Argentina. Here's the link. The cute creature sketch is worth a click!

Phantoms and Monsters shared an interesting personal account from someone who believes his driveway may be some sort of portal. You can check out the full story here.


I also want to announce that i'm working on an interview with Mark Collins, the journalist who has been covering the M6 paranormal crash. The full interview will be up on the site by next Monday so be sure to check back!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ghost Hunting 101

Types of hauntings

Today I’m going to talk about the different types of hauntings. There are two basic types of hauntings that have several subcategories. It’s important for ghost hunters to be familiar with these terms because they come up a lot in discussion and can help us better understand the nature of each event.

The two main types of haunting are intelligent and residual

The first type is basically what it sounds like-some sort of spirit who shows signs of intelligence and interaction with the present world. This can include direct responses to questions, completing tasks asked of it, or commenting/responding to the people present.

A residual haunting is one where the spirit appears to have no knowledge of its surroundings. These types often include activity such as the repeating of a phrase or action, or movement that doesn’t make sense in the environment (walking into doors, climbing invisible stairs etc…) Many people believe these hauntings are simply a replaying of activities that occurred in the past.


Lets look at some of the other basic subcategories.

Many people believe that both human an inhuman spirits can interact with our world. A human spirit is someone who once lived and for whatever reason appears to still be hanging around. For the most part these spirits are completely harmless. Sometimes they startle people when noticed but for the most part it appears to be accidental.

Inhuman spirits are incredibly rare. Many people feel that demons, elementals, and other dark entities are to blame for these hauntings. If one of these things are hanging around they are usually quick to let people know they are there. Some signs that a haunting may be inhuman in nature include the movement of large objects, unexplainable injuries to people in the location and a strong sulfur smell. If you feel you’ve come across something inhuman or dangerous while investigating I recommend seeking help in dealing with the problem because they can be dangerous and difficult to get rid of. In three years of investigating I’ve never come across something I felt fell into this category, though I’ve talked to enough people who have dealt with them to believe they are a possibility.

Another type of haunting that gets a lot of attention is poltergeist activity. This type of haunting is mostly limited to the movement or manipulation of objects. There are many theories to the cause of poltergeist activity but many of the explanations are based on little more than legend. Some people feel there is a link in poltergeist activity and psychic ability. They theorize that unconscious thought or stress triggers the movement of objects. There have been limited amounts of testing done on these theories though, making them little more than speculation.

Perhaps in a few more years with work and research investigators will be able to better understand the cause and logic behind hauntings. Until then, all we can do is try to understand them.

Have you ever experienced a haunting? If so, what category do you think it falls under?

Monday, December 13, 2010

Product Review: RCA VR220 Digital Recorder




The RCA VR220 digital recorder is a relatively inexpensive audio recorder with good sound quality. Digital recorders are one of the most popular ghost hunting tools used today. They’re used to capture EVP (electric voice phenomenon) and also to document the events that occur during investigations. This one is fairly simple to use and has several nice features. Other recorders can cost hundreds of dollars, so finding a cheap one that works well can be a challenge. This ones performance is equal, if not superior to many of its competitors.

The RCA VR220 has a pretty simple setup. The play and stop buttons are easy to locate and the record and volume buttons are located off to the side. This is nice because if you are trying to operate it in the dark you don’t have to worry about hitting the wrong thing. It also comes with a locking feature, which comes in handy if you carry it around in a pocket or bag. It prevents the recorder from accidentally recording when you aren’t paying attention. Another good feature of the VR220 is that you can attach a microphone and also do playback through a pair of headphones (which aren’t included with the recorder.)

This recorder also comes with the ability to recorder on multiple folders. While this can be a good thing if you are doing multiple locations in a short amount of time, it can also be confusing if you accidentally get into the wrong folder. I think the recorder could be improved by making the folder system more user friendly, but it’s a pretty minor problem most of the time.

Overall, this recorder is definitely worth your money if you are serious about ghost hunting, or just looking to give it a try. The sound quality is good, it’s surprisingly durable (I’ve dropped mine more times than I’d like to admit,) and it’s actually easy to use. I give this product 4 ghosts out of 5.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Creature Feature: The Altamaha-ha



There is no shortage of stories about aquatic monsters living in the world. They swim through our oceans, lakes, rivers and imaginations. One of the less common water creatures is the Altamaha-ha, a creature seen only in the Altamaha River in Georgia.

The Altamaha-ha has been spotted for generations. It’s often described as having grey skin and resembles a large snake or sturgeon. Many people believe it’s actually a sea creature that swims up river to spawn. It most likely feeds on fish or other river creatures. And there are still a number of sightings occurring around the Altamaha River, adding more fuel to the legend.

People are usually curious about ocean and river creatures because there is just so little known about what’s below the surface. The mystery of sea creatures makes them fascinating. We still continue to discover new creatures in oceans and river beds, making it plausible that there could be large undiscovered creatures living right under our noses. And maybe the Altamaha-ha really is just a misidentified fish, or dolphin. But, just maybe, it’s something more.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Weekly News Round-up

Here's this weeks collection of paranormal news!

Sacbee.com posted an article on the Marfa lights about a cryptozoologist who claims that the lights are bioluminescent creatures (and possibly pterosaurs?) The claim sounds a bit far fetched to me, but the lights are pretty interesting. Here's a link to the artice and a link to a video of the lights.

Phantoms and Monsters has an article about the hauntings of the London Underground here.

Last but not least, Remoteviewed.com has posted a collection of information on Project Stargate, the CIA's experiment using psychic spies. You can find it here.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Spotting a Fake: Photos Part 3

 
Reflections


Reflections cause their fair share of problems for ghost hunters, and I’m not just talking about the kind you see in your mirror. Light has a strange way of bouncing around a space and often shows up in unexpected places. All it takes is a slightly reflective surface and BAM, you’ve got yourself an anomaly. With a little practice though, light reflections are pretty easy to recognize.

A flashlight reflects in a window



The first thing you should do when you see a light anomaly in a photo is try and identify a source. Look for a light source such as a lighting fixture or flashlight. Often the camera flash reflects all over place. Once you’ve figured out all the potential sources for the light, try and locate every reflective surface in the room- that can include mirrors, windows, glass tables, plastic display cases, metallic surfaces and a whole lot of other things as well. Ask yourself if you can see a natural pattern in how the light is moving across the room. Also, if you notice the anomaly while you are taking photos, take another photo of the exact same spot. This is a really helpful technique because it can help you determine what things are naturally occurring in a space.


The table,windows,display case,pictures,chairs,walls,and clocks in this room all reflect light



 
 A light reflection can appear much larger (or smaller) than the initial light source, so don’t assume something is paranormal just because the size is unusual. Light can also appear to change color in photos, so don’t be surprised if your flashlight or camera flash turns a weird color on occasion.

If you still aren’t sure if what you are looking at is paranormal, get a second opinion. Sometimes another person can point out some obvious solution you may have overlooked or help you investigate further if the image just can’t be explained.

At the end of the day, it's really about training yourself to analyze the space, and world around you- and knowledge is one of your best weapons.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Creature Feature: The Ahool



Is it  bird? A Plane? Nope, it’s just an Ahool.

Some of you may be wondering just what an Ahool is. It’s one of the less common cryptids, and generally thought to be a giant bat spotted throughout Java. It has grey fur, large claws and loves to snack on fish it catches in local rivers. Its name comes from the sound it makes and most locals really believe it exists.

It’s not terribly far fetched for people to be spotting giant flying creatures above them. Several large birds, including large owls, live in Java. It’s easy to misidentify something spotted above you. Estimating distances from the ground is no easy task. Add a dark night and a scary sound and you have yourself a legend.

And, just maybe, there really is a large bat hanging around. It wouldn’t be the first surprise nature has thrown at us. Real or not, the Ahool has people watching the skies, searching for something unknown.




Coleman, Loren and Clark, Jerome. Crypto-zoology A to Z. The Encyclopedia of Loch Ness Monsters, Sasquatch, Chupacabras, and Other Authentic Mysteries of Nature. New York. Fireside. 1999

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Evidence Time!


I'm excited to get to share some evidence my team caught on our Halloween investigation. Both of these videos were taken at Heritage Farms in Brunswick, Ohio. The farm is managed by the Brunswick Historical society. We caught a lot of activity there and had a good time.

The first is a video of a door swinging open on its own. It does this after being asked to close and you can hear the door unlatch. What makes this video really cool is that you can see both sides of the door and see that no one is near it!

The second video was taken inside a barn. A figure appears behind my right shoulder. It's really quick, so you may have to watch it a few times to see it but once you notice it you should be able to see a head,torso and arm moving behind me. You may want to click the little button in the corner to enlarge it.

Hope you enjoy watching!

video video


















Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Weekly News Round-up

I've been following this story for awhile now, but I've been a little hesitant to repost it. Mostly because the whole thing seems so silly. But a lot of people are curious about the story, so you might as well read it. Here's a link to the M6 paranormal crash story from Beforeitsnews.biz. There's an update on the story at Ghosttheory.com here. Even if the whole thing is made up, it does make an interesting story.

AOL news has article, stating that NASA is preparing to make an announcement regarding "an astrobiology finding that will impact the search for evidence of extraterrestrial life." I'm not sure exactly what that means but lots of people are speculating! Check out the article for all the details.

 In paranormal entertainment news, Allheadlinenews.com has a brief article about a new paranormal show being in the works.

And, a slightly disturbing article is posted on courant.com about a man claiming ghosts made him kill.

Happy reading!