views updated May 23 2018


Term coined by zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans to characterize the study of "hidden animals." It includes the study of the existence of known animals in places where they were not expected to occur as well as the persistence of animals presumed to be extinct. The key trait of animals considered the object of cryptozoology is their unexpected nature. The idea of cryptozoology was suggested by the discovery of exotic animals through the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. They include the gorilla, the giant squid, and the coelecanth (a fish thought to be extinct for many millenia).

The primary interest of present-day cryptozoologists are such animals as the Loch Ness Monster and other lake monsters, Bigfoot and other living hominoids, and the possibility of various dinosaur survivals.

Heuvelmans established a Centre de Cryptozoologie in France.


Heuvelsmans, Bernard. "What Is Cryptozoology?" Crypto-zoology 1 (Winter 1982): 1-12.

Mackal, Roy P. Searching for Hidden Animals. Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, 1980.

Michell, John, and Robert J. M. Rickard. Living Wonders: Mysteries and Curiosities of the Animal World. New York: Thames and Hudson, 1982.

Cryptozoology (Journal)

views updated May 11 2018

Cryptozoology (Journal)

Official journal of the International Society of Crypto-zoology, concerned with the study and discussion of anomalous animal phenomena (i.e., animals at present unknown to science, but occasionally reported to exist, and that could be legitimate new species). The journal includes expedition and field reports, scholarly theorizing, and in-depth studies relating to cryptozoology. The journal is issued by the International Society of Cryptozoology. Address: Box 43070, Tucson, AZ 85733. Website: