|Cryptozoology, BioForteana, Zoological Oddities, Unusual Natural History|
The Report Form
How do you find people who can tell you about their sightings? Several methods are available with only minor expense involved. These are the basics. Your locality may require other methods for you to pursue.
While looking for reports of mystery animals in Maryland, I was advised to investigate a particular road in Harford County that had been the site of a few Bigfoot reports. Because of the number of houses and farms on that road, and because my time schedule didn't allow me to knock on every door, I did the next best thing.
I left an envelope at each house with a brief note stating my interest in any reports of unusual animals seen in that area. Along with the note, I included a self-addressed postal card with notations on the back for name, address, and description of sighting. Even if they hadn't seen anything, I asked them to mail the card back, just for "statistical" purposes. Several cards came back with no new information, but two cards did contain sighting reports. One concerned a cougar sighted in the 1960's during a wave of big cat reports, and the other was a cougar sighting from the summer of 1992. No one reported any Bigfoot sightings, but the cougar reports made the effort worthwhile.
Once I received the postal cards, I immediately sent the witnesses a report form (along with a self-addressed, stamped envelope). A report form should contain all details which might be important to your investigation.
My form is long, but it is simple to fill out. Not every question will be answered, but it covers everything I feel I need to know. Because I have it saved in my computer, if I find I need to add different questions, I can modify it and print out the new form.
My "Anomalous Wildlife Report Form" includes the following details: