Tapping ME and Beyond

Posted by: Loren Coleman on January 26th, 2007

Maine is a cool state and a great one for writers. It is full of trees, megafauna, and lots of quiet spaces, only filled with the songs of birds and bubbling brooks. Maine has only a little over a million people who generally leave you alone when you want to be alone and are friendly when you want to be around ’em.

Also, it has this clearly clever postal abbreviation in which Maine is given as “ME.” Everyone feels special in Maine. As reality would have it, we all have to start with our own world view, our own “me” and then go beyond ourselves as we explore the rest of the universe.

TAPS Paramagazine

In the newest issue of TAPS Paramagazine (tap on their ad at right for more information), you will see that I have begun a new journey with the TAPS’ staff of regular columnists and authors. I decided to start with Maine, in my first contribution, as a subtle metaphor of how such treks begin.

In the January 2007 issue, I write of my investigations of the historical and recent sightings of Maine’s “Mystery Moose,” gigantic reported examples of Alces alces, which look like the animals we call “moose” in Maine. (Of course, for my international readers, it should be noted that the known species are termed “elk” in Europe as well as in almost every other location other than North America and New Zealand.) The cryptid moose of Maine have come down through the decades in the shadowy folklore of the “Specter Moose,” which Michelle Souliere of Strange Maine has highlighted in recent years.

The “Mystery Moose” piece has a companion list of my ten favorite hoofed mystery animals of the world, dedicated to cryptozoologist Karl Shuker.

In the February issue, I share my list of what I see as the top ten Lake Monsters of New England. It is paired with an article on New England’s Sea Serpents, such as Cassie of Portland’s Casco Bay. I note and congratulate some of the sterling archival recovery work of Christopher Dunham of All Things Maine, who has dug out old cases of Sea Serpent sightings from along the Downeast coast.

In the coming months, I’ll have articles and lists, for example, about the Dover Demon, Western Bigfoot researchers, the leading Yowie hunters, and the top Japanese toys for any cryptozoo collection. TAPS is based in New England, as I am. It does seem right to commence the quest in New England, and then move around the world via those pages.

Field Guide to Bigfoot

I hope you enjoy TAPS’ new platform for and extension of my writings, as well as you have through last year’s re-release of The Unidentified & Creatures of the Other Edge and The Field Guide to Bigfoot and Other Mystery Primates from Anomalist Books. I also look forth to sharing an old classic with you, via the upcoming April 2007 publication of Paraview Pocket’s Mysterious America.

Loren Coleman Mysterious America 2007

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.

18 Responses to “Tapping ME and Beyond”

  1. DWA responds:

    I like this line:

    “Maine has only a little over a million people…”

    I think we’ve identified a potential problem for planetary megafauna, right there. When a million ain’t much, space is kind of at a premium, doncha think?

    I will say that only in Maine can you actually think a million ain’t much. You can certainly see how easy a million are to get away from, that’s for sure.

  2. Loren Coleman responds:

    Maine is as big, speaking from the point of view of the numbers of acres of land, as the rest of New England. The vast majority of people live in the southern part of the state. In the greater Portland area, one-fourth of the state population exists. The state, by land surface, is 95% covered by trees. In the PNW, statistically, it is only 80%.

    Other than Alaska, Maine is the state with the most undisturbed, wild, and wilderness areas.

    Yes, megafauna enjoy 3/4 of the state of Maine, and the non-human animals have plenty of space to roam. The one million people here stay out of the way of the megafauna.

    This is not to dismiss the overall concern. Megafauna are in danger, and in some areas they no longer exist because of human overpopulation.

  3. MountDesertIslander responds:

    Unless one visits or lives in Maine through the winter months, you have no idea how empty the place can be. Route 1A is the primary road from Bangor to the coastal towns of Ellsworth, Bar Harbor and other small tourist communities. I sometimes drive from Bangor using that stretch of highway on weeknights after 10PM. It is not an exaggeration to say that in mid January you might be lucky to see 5 other cars headed in the opposite direction on that 40 mile stretch. Combined with the fact that during the winter night has fallen by 4:30 PM, it can seem like there are precious few places to seek refuge in the event of a mishap. It takes some getting used to, but Maine is a great place to live.

    I heard a dissertation on the worlds population from a guest on a local radio program recently. He related an example he used to quantify just how large this world really is. It began something like this;

    If you took the entire worlds population and assigned every man, woman, and child now alive a 40 acre parcel of land in order to sustenance farm they would occupy the continent of Australia with the remainder of the world free from man.

    If that same group was only given a 50 foot x 150 foot plot of land for each person, the entire population of the world would fit into the State of Texas.

    If that same group was allowed only a 3 foot x 3 foot square in which to stand the entire world’s population could be fit into the boundaries of Ellsworth, Maine. (oddly enough Ellsworth is by area the second largest incorporated city by area in the United States. I believe Jacksonville Fl is first.)

    Maine has a gigantic amount of open space in the central and northern regions. It is staggering how alone you can be around a million other people who wish to remain to themselves.

  4. Loren Coleman responds:

    MountDesertIslander – Well put, indeed. Wicked good visual images in words!

  5. kittenz responds:

    Maine has both Loren Coleman AND Stephen King.

    Sounds like a pretty cool place!

  6. Muskie Murawski responds:

    Yes and the famous Mohammad Ali comeback fight.

  7. joppa responds:

    Cool stats about population and space!

  8. DWA responds:

    Let no one doubt from my first post what I think of Maine. I have seen more than enough horizon-spanning oceans of green in that state — one of them only about two hours’ drive from MDI, on top of Peaked Mountain — to know better than to dis Maine.

    It’s a million being a small number, for one state, when the sasquatch may not have much more than a couple or so thousandths of that population for the entire North American continent.

    Getting the picture, skeptics? 😉

  9. deejay responds:

    Maine is cool, but New Hampshire is better. Only because I live there. Do NH next Loren!

  10. ladd responds:

    I’ve been to Maine on several occasions both summer and winter and it truly is a beautiful state especially Baxter State Park, Southwest Harbor, Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park. You can actually lose yourself in all that spacious forest splendor and not run into another human being. Maybe if you’re lucky, a cryptid or two. Hey deejay, I like NH too. And Loren, will TAPS Paramagazine be available at bookstores or is it subscription only? I haven’t seen it at any of our local bookstores.

  11. mystery_man responds:

    I can totally understand how much space there can be even with a million people living there. As many of you might know since I’ve mentioned it before, I live in Japan. There are over 120 million people living in an amount of area roughly the size of California. 120 MILLION. Yet, get away from the megacities where most people are concentrated and you get unspoiled natural vistas as far as the eye can see. Most of Japan is mountains and I have seen vast, open spaces full of nature, in fact some of the most beautiful wild country I have ever seen. Unfortunately, a lot of the megafauna have become extinct, most notably the Japanese wolf, but there are still a plethora of thriving indigenous species. So Maine, with 1 million people? Can’t wait to go there someday.

  12. mystery_man responds:

    Too bad Japan is not exactly a haven for cryptids, although there is a cryptid snake called the tsuchinoko.

  13. rifleman responds:

    There is a reason for the sparse population of Maine.

    If you take a nap in summer you wake up in winter.

  14. Bluestroke responds:


    (will TAPS Paramagazine be available at bookstores or is it subscription only? I haven’t seen it at any of our local bookstores.)

    Taps para magazine will be carried nationwide by Ingram Periodicals which is a national distributor beginning in March. At the moment it is only available on newsstands at a few select locations in Southeastern Mass due to contractual agreements.

    It has been a subscription-based publication with thousands of subscribers nationwide until now.

    If your local bookstore or newsstand is supplied by Ingram, you should be able to have them order you a copy.

    The mag is just a little more than a year old and we have tried to assemble a contributing staff of some of the finest minds and writers in the wide field of the paranormal. We were honored to recruit Loren to our team which includes some of the top minds in ufology, ghosts (yes three of the founders are also the stars of SciFi’s Ghost Hunters) and other aspects of the paranormal. Shortly, we will be launching our new magazine website at tapsparamag.com which will have all the information about the magazine.

    Thank you for your question and congratualtions to all for making cryptomundo one of the best websites in the paranormal by far.

    R.W. Bluestroke

  15. Loren Coleman responds:

    Area: 33,414 sq. mi. (86,542 km)
    Pop: 1.2 million
    Density: 13/km

    Area: 158,302 sq. mi. (410,000 km)
    Pop: 34 million
    Density: 102/km

    Area: 145,883 sq. mi. (337,873 km)
    Pop: 128 million
    Density: 379/km

    Area: 126,700 km
    Pop: 124 million
    Density: 979/km

    For a list of countries and their density, see here.

  16. MountDesertIslander responds:

    I am surprised that Maine does not have a more active cryptid sighting rate. It seems that this place is well suited to hold the prospects of supporting a cryptid population. By cryptid I mean bigfoot, lake monsters, or sea creatures. I know of mountain lion sightings and even an alligator being pulled out of a southern Maine lake. These are more out of place animals than unknown species. Along with that the ‘Maine Mystery beast’ was more hype than horror. Where are the cryptids Loren? I would love to have a good dose of cryptid hysteria to break the cabin fever I’m feeling these days.

  17. Mnynames responds:

    Actually, if all the above is true, then one reason for the lack of cryptids would be that there are few people there to see them.

    As for Japan, I’ve heard it said that only 10% of the land there is inhabitable, the rest of it consisting largely of steep mountainsides. So while it may be the size of California, the living space is roughly 10% of California…not a lot.

    I envy you both, as I’d love to lose myself in both places (Maine and Japan, I mean, with no offense intended to Cali).

  18. mystery_man responds:

    Very true, Mnynames. Something like 90% of the population here in Japan is concentrated in huge cities in the coastal plains. The vast majority of the country is mountainous, with mostly small villages. There is a lot of uninhabited, unspoiled wilderness here. It’s sad though because even at that, some species have been wiped out. The Japanese wolf, of which there were two types, have become extinct even though they were once worshiped. The Amami hare is on its way to extinction. There is a major problem with introduced species here. Raccoons have caused a lot of trouble as have largemouth bass, which were introduced for sport fishing. Turns out the Largemouth bass, although fun to catch, is pushing out a good deal of indigenous fish species with their voracious appetites. Some animals, such as the Japanese macaque and tanuki (raccoon dog) are holding their own fairly well. Some people I know of here believe the Honshu wolf still exists somewhere, so here’s hoping. Even in such a populated country, there are still wild places aplenty.

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