Thursday, 8 August 2019

"My colleague is completely incorrect...."

I was just contacted by a professor at a British university. Nothing unusual in that except he was asking about a certain 'big cat' photo but then told me about a recent incident.

"We had two radio journalists and were discussing non native and introduced species. My colleague, a senior lecturer, began to joke about this and made reference to your EAR and you having had nothing better to do than chase mythical cats around the countryside"

I was told this academic's name -never heard of him and as far as I can tell he has never looked at exotic reports. I was told that the top man at the university being present then interjected:

"My colleague is completely incorrect. Mr Hooper has published private papers as well as co-authored reports with academics and is a noted naturalist with a specialisation in canids and felids and began his work forty odd years ago before my esteemed colleague had even gone to university"


It seems that the 'junior' academic had been very mouthy of late and this "defamation" in front of journalists was the last straw.,  He made his rebuttal and everyone moved on to the next topic.

I have no idea what is going on but it is nice to have a senior academic sing your praises.

Sadly, it does not make me money! :-)

Never ever accept a photograph before fully investigating

In the last month or so there have been at least five (5) photographs-not very detailed ones- of a "big cat" or a "panther or jaguar" from the Somerset, Devon and Wiltshire counties.

These photographs are all too dark or blurry -in some cases it looks like the same cat. Of course I reported on the attempt by cryptozoologists to hoax me by sending me a photo of a "puma crossing the road" -it was in fact a lioness and I tracked the original photo down quickly.

Anyone reporting a big cat, photo or not, is guaranteed anonymity and that guarantee has never been broken by me since 1977,  That's a good while ago and I could have made quite a bit of money had I taken the route of many of the UKs 'big cat' experts. I am not in this work to make money.,

I need to point out that there is only one member of the big cat family known to be in the UK and not, as many claim, simply the result of the 1976 Dangerous Wild Animals Act. That cat is the leopard -Panthera pardus and despite what you might read there have been reports of the regular leopard.  We have DNA, hairs, paw print casts and so on.

There has never been a genuine report of a Jaguar running wild in the UK. Nor have any genuine tiger reports been received.

"Big cat filmed eating domestic cat in London" was a ginger domestic quite clearly eating a pigeon.

Rather like ufologists and 'ghost hunters' who fake things or jump onto obviously fake stories because "it keeps the publicity and attention going" so it seems that there are a few cryptozoologists and people involved in the 'big cat' business out to push or distribute fake "British big cat" photographs mostly all originating from Mr Anonymous.  None are contactable so you cannot ask any questions or verify whether they are genuine or not. Convenient.

the Press ans media do not care because these are all silly "filler" stories.  They have absolutely no interest in proving that there are exotic -now native after many generations- cats living in the UK.

I was once approached by a national newspaper -The Sun- and offered a substantial amount of money for maps to where "all the big cats are" as well as contact details of all the witnesses and any copies of communications between myself and police forces. My response (and I REALLY did need money) was "No". A few months after I appeared on a local TV programme I was contacted by a reporter from The Mirror newspaper who offered the same deal (but a little more money).  Same response from me.

You see, they both wanted the maps to pay "big game hunters" out to see if they could "get (kill) a cat".  Many people from estate game wardens, estate owners, wildlife groups and even members of the public only gave details when they were satisfied I was NOT a "hunter"!  Some of those grillings were very thorough.

Breaching a guarantee of anonymity given to a witness or other people? Never.

Passing on copies of confidential correspondence with UK police forces...that really was pushing things.  Never happen.

TV and newspapers are only interested in the fast news item. Publish/broadcast what you can get then move on. 

The BBC Natural History unit once had a series of meetings with myself as well as more reputable 'cat' people.  They were impressed by the evidence and everything was going great guns -I even knew of one farm where a large cat was seen regularly in the evening and at night so cameras could be set up.  Suddenly, no explanation, the BBC pulled out and no longer wanted to discuss the matter -after months of work on my part and in getting people willing to speak on camera.

No offers to fund field work for exclusive rights to broadcast any new evidence.  TV and Media are not into that.

Hoaxers sending out anonymous 'big cat' photographs do far more harm than any silly DEFRA statement on cats in the UK.

So be aware of this fakery.  Never ever accept a photograph before fully investigating.,

Thursday, 18 July 2019

Very Important Notice

I am currently awaiting a response from the person involved but if I have not heard from them by Sunday I will be posting an item on Monday.

It appears that certain cat reports will need to be re-assessed in light of recent information.  It appears that academics I worked with on a certain study may have had ulterior motives but I think it only fair that they be given a chance to respond.

Whatever the response is, however, I will never again work with academics whose claims of professional conduct values appear to be hot air.

I am getting far too old for being messed about by people who withhold information, findings and other evidence.  I've been doing this work since 1977 and having my data filched is no longer going to happen.

Face Book and a Closure Notice

There is an EAR Face Book page if you want to contact me via Messenger but you may still do so via  the confidential email system at

the Face Book page is here:

Since this blog was set up there have been high numbers of views.  However, no feedback, comments, reports or...anything.  Yet it seems people have been taking info from here to use as their own.

For this reason from next Monday this blog will be closed.

I am not prepared to keep updating for info thieves and people with no interest I'd guess.

Sunday, 14 July 2019

Cover Up?

I was sorting through some paperwork last night when I came across a file marked "MAFF" (Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries & Food -the body that became DEFRA (Dept Environment Farming and Rural Affairs).

I had forgotten an exchange of letters with them in the mid 1990s.  They had stated clearly that there had never been any reports of wild living wolverine (Gulo gulo) in the UK. I challenged them on this and gave the names of RSPCA Inspectors (when that job meant something), dates, times and locations that they had sighted and reported such animals.  I gave similar for naturalists who had seen wolverine and even incidents where police were called out over a "rather angry animal" which they identified via my fact sheets as wolverine.

The MAFF person apologised and corrected the statement as to "no wolverine reported to MAFF as causing live stock problems". So they were not saying that there were no such animals in the UK -just not reported to them (a lie in fact).

In another exchange I cited incidents, dates, times, locations and offered contact details for people of sound reputation who had sighted large exotic cats (non-native is only really applies to recent escapees). I suggested that rather than repeatedly get embroiled in press chat that they tried to avoid, it might be an idea to get anyone reporting sightings to contact me.  After all, I had been doing this for 20 years by then and police forces passed on reports and I was a member of Partners Against Wildlife Crime (PAWS).

There were no large cats in the UK they told me. They had guidelines on how to deal with such cats IF they threatened livestock so long as it breached no poisons or other legislation.  Hang on...there were NO CATS out there but they had issued guidelines to deal with these non existent cats?

Oh they were doing more than just advising.  Active trapping and killing of cats -I had the report from a police wildlife officer and got a signed affidavit from the farmer involved who was shocked and outraged as he thought the cat was being knocked out to go to a zoo. 

DEFRA's chief veterinary officer dealing with big cats amongst other things had me blacklisted from contacting her office and DEFRA blocked me from PAWS as a consultant despite my being backed by two chief constables.

Yes, these cats ARE out there. MAFF and now DEFRA know it and, I really really hate to write this: they have been covering up these matters for a long time and I and police officers, farmers groups and others know it.


Thursday, 11 July 2019

'Puma' In Devon?

As the person who contacted me wants no publicity and would only send the photograph upon the guarantee of anonymity I shall refer to him as MP.

"About 8pm on Tuesday (9th July) evening I was driving near a sports club in Devon -the one with the high security fence on the left hand side of the photo which is currently being partially removed. Me daughter C-- and her boy friend K--- were in the car.  K--- sez 'that's a  something or other cat!' and C-- said it must be a puma as she reckoned that it was following two of those tiny deer (muntjac?) that had run across the road a while before.

"K-- started freaking out in the back seat while C--- climbed over the seat into the front to get a better look.  She got her phone out to take a photo but her hands was shaking and she handed it to me.  Never used it before but she said to point it and tap the key. So I did and she told me to video record it but I pressed the wrong button and the phone shut down.

"Don't want no publicity or my name mentioned to anyone. I've known two fellas that have seen these pumas and they got the piss taken out of them and for one it got so bad he moved down Bideford way after quitting his job. But here you go to go in your files -a fairly clear puma photo!"
Now, anyone who knows cats will know that is not a puma.  Head and body are all wrong and if you want a blow up of the cat....

 To me it looks like a lion -a lioness?

Is someone having a joke?  The location is given as "about 10 miles from Woolfardisworthy" and THAT set alarm bells ringing.  As I am unaware of any recent sightings in that area of puma let alone lions I tend to views this dubiously -MP did say that a local farmer had lost sheep recently and found the carcasses but had told everyone locally "big dogs" had killed and buried them.

Pinch of salt.....or a sack of salt?

"My colleague is completely incorrect...."

I was just contacted by a professor at a British university. Nothing unusual in that except he was asking about a certain 'big cat'...