Fortean Times

Fortean Times 382

Fortean Times, named after maverick American writer Charles Fort, is one of the world’s most individual and best loved magazines. For over 35 years FT has been chronicling the stranger side of life, delivering a heady mix of weird world news, up-to-date reports and features on every aspect of the unexplained: myths, monsters, ghosts and UFOs rub shoulders with ancient wonders and future science, while expert columnists bring you the latest on everything from cryptozoology to conspiracy theory. Open-minded, well informed and maintaining a healthy sense of humour, FT is the only place to go for a sensible look at our mad planet – it will change the way you see the world.

United Kingdom
Dennis Publishing UK
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12 Issues

in this issue

3 min.

INVESTING IN STRANGE PHENOMENA Our cover story this issue concerns a fairly obscure bit of Romanian woodland that has in recent years become something of a holiday hotspot for paranormal thrill-seekers. The forest of Hoia Baciu lies just outside the Transylvanian city of Cluj-Napoca but, despite its location, it’s famed not for the usual vampire lore but for a more modern mythology taking in UFO sightings, mysterious lights and weird ‘time tunnels’ into which hapless visitors disappear without warning. Even the trees themselves are distinctly odd, showing strangely distorted growth patterns and ugly cankers on their trunks. Chris Hill ventured into the woods and lived to tell the tale (p32); but did he find any evidence of paranormal activity? He certainly succumbed to Hoia Baciu’s otherworldly atmosphere, but noted that while…

4 min.
reasons to be cheerful

• Regarding the looming plastic catastrophe: in a recent paper, scientists at Kew Gardens announced that fungi could be key to winning the battle against plastic waste, not to mention cleaning up radioactive material and producing biodiesel. For instance in 2017, on a rubbish dump in Islamabad, Pakistan, Chinese scientists found a fungus called Aspergillus tubingensis, which produces an enzyme that can break down even super-resilient plastics such as polyester polyurethane, fully digesting it within weeks. The genes that produce this enzyme could be put in marine fungi to help clear plastic in the oceans. Meanwhile, bacteria and even caterpillars are evolving to ‘eat’ plastic; the waxworm, a type of moth caterpillar, consumes polyethylene, one of the toughest and most commonly used varieties. D.Telegraph, 12 Sept; D.Mail, 13+20 Sept 2018. •…

3 min.
the conspirasphere

MADNESS IN OREGON The walk-out by Republican members of the Oregon legislature (to stall the passage of a bill to reduce carbon emissions) started as a local example of the kind of petulance that seems to characterise contemporary US politics. But things began to take a decidedly ominous turn after the state’s Governor (a Democrat, Kate Brown) responded by posting on her official website that she had asked the state police to bring the recalcitrant Republicans back to the State Capitol to do their (democratic) duty. That provoked a response from Republican state senator Brian Boquist which raised the temperature a notch or two. “Send bachelors and come heavily armed,” the senator was quoted as saying. “I’m not going to be a political prisoner in the state of Oregon.” Ruby Ridge, anyone?…

1 min.
extra! extra!

FLORIDA POLICE OFFICER CHARGED WITH FAILING TO HELP MASSACRE PUPILS D.Telegraph, 5 June 2019. Man shoots dead brother News 18 (Indian website), ––April 2019. DEAD BROTHEL OWNER WINS ELECTION FOR LEGISLATIVE SEAT [AP] ABC News, 7 Nov 2018 Bronze man stolen from Yeats grave tells own story Irish Times, 22 Dec 2018. MAN CHARGED WITH DIPPING HIS TESTICLES IN SALSA Knoxville (TN) News Sentinel, 1 Mar 2019. Fifth of meat goods revealed alien DNA D.Telegraph, 6 Sept 2018. SNORKELLER FINDS SKELETONS’ TEA PARTY <i> 8 May 2015.…

3 min.
tower ravens bulletin

Following the death in March 2018 of Munin, 23, the oldest and longest-serving raven at the Tower of London [FT367:10-11], breeding pair Huginn and Muninn (both aged 13) arrived at the end of 2018. Now four raven chicks have been born at the Tower for the first time in 30 years. They began hatching on St George’s Day. Ravenmaster Yeoman Warder Chris Skaife said he felt “like a proud father”. Since the birds began hatching on 23 April, they have quadrupled in size from about 3in (8cm) to more than a foot (30cm) in height, having been fed on a diet of quail, mice and rats. Their iridescent black plumage is starting to come through, although their pink beaks will not turn black for about a year. One of the…

6 min.
parrot fashion

• A parrot was taken into custody in northern Brazil following a police raid targeting crack dealers. The green and white bird had been taught to alert criminals to police operations in Vila Irmã Dulce, a low-income community in the sun-scorched capital of Piauí state, by shouting: “Mum, the police!” The parrot was seized on 22 April when officers swooped on a drug den run by a local couple. “As soon as the police got close he started shouting,” said an officer involved in the operation. Drugs, including crack and marijuana, were found at the property, as well as large amounts of money. A journalist described the imprisoned parrot as a “super obedient” creature – albeit one that had kept its beak firmly shut after being “arrested”. The Brazilian broadcaster…