By Garth Guessman
Hi everybody. Here I am again with more information about cryptozoological creatures. I would like to introduce David Woetzel of New Hampshire. David and Dr. William Gibbons of Canada went in 2000 to Cameroon, Africa, and documented on video the natives describing Lakele Bembi, a seropod dinosaur that lives in the rivers there. David and I have been in the process of planning a trip to Papua, New Guinea, as part of a team of creationists hoping to document and videotape a pterosaur that lives there.
In the current issue (Vol. 8, No.2) of Creation Matters, a publication of the Creation Research Society, David P. Woetzel has an interesting article called “Director of Genome Project Speaks on Origins at Harvard.” The qualifications of Dave Woetzel at the end of the article state: “His special passion within the origins debate is showcasing, at the web sitehttp://www.genesispark.org the evidence that men and dinosaurs coexisted.” If you go to his web site and click on “Genesis Park” and “Pterosaur Paddock” you will find a wealth of information on pterosaurs. With Dave Woetzel’s permission, I am reprinting below what he has to say about these creatures.
Pterosaurs are a group of flying reptiles that, while not true dinosaurs, are said to have thrived and become extinct at the same time as the dinosaurs. The Pterosaur’s long, narrow wings are made of a thin skin membrane supported by an elongated fourth finger of each front foot. The fossil evidence suggests that these creatures were capable of active flight and also spent much time on the water. The largest, Quetzalcoatlus, has been discovered with a huge 14.4 m (48 ft) wingspread. Along with considerable evidence that such creatures lived in recent history, there are credible stories suggesting that some might still be alive today!
The “Kongamato” of Africa
Deep in the Kenyan bush of East Africa, lives a beaked, flying creature called the Kongamato. This extraordinary animal first received widespread attention when explorer Frank Welland described them in his 1932 book In Witchbound Africa. The Kongamato (“overwhelmer of boats”) is described as a large, reddish creature with leathery wings, devoid of feathers. Eyewitnesses who are shown an illustration, of the pterodactyl unanimously agreed to this identification of the Kongamato. Dr. J.L.B. Smith (famous for his investigation into the living fossil, the coelacanth) wrote in his 1956 book Old Fourlegs about flying dragons that lived near Mount Kilimanjaro, Tanzania. Modem reports of the Kongamato continue to surface. In 1998 Steve Romandi-Menya, a Kenyon exchange student living in Louisiana, declared that the Kongamato is well known to the bush-dwelling people in his country. Somewhat south in Zambia, the natives describe a nocturnal, bat-like creature called Olitu. Likely the same as the Kongamato, this creature was observed by an exploration team under Ivan Sanderson in 1932 and again in 1956 by engineer J.P.F. Brown near Lake Bangweulu. The creatures are said to feed on decomposing human flesh, digging up bodies if they are not buried to sufficient depth. In 1942 Captain Charles R.S. Pitman wrote in A Game Warden Takes Stock that a large pterodactyl-type creature inhabited the inland swamps of Angola.
The “Ropen” of New Guinea
Shortly after World War II, as Western missionaries began to penetrate the deep jungles and remote islands of Papua New Guinea, stories of a flying creature called the Ropen (“demon flyer”) began to be reported. Described as a nocturnal creature, the Ropen possesses two leathery wings like a bat, a long tail with a diamond-shaped flange on the end, a beak filled with teeth, and razor-sharp claws. The creatures inhabit the caves that dot the islands of New Britain and Umboi, located in the Bismarck Archipelago. Reports seem to fit the presumed-extinct Rhamphorhynchus, a pterodactyl with a wingspan of 3-4 feet. Like the Kongamato in Kenya, the Ropen is said to have a taste for decaying human flesh and has even harassed native funeral gatherings with western missionaries present. Carl E. Baugh of the Creation Evidence Museum has conducted two Ropen expeditions to New Guinea. He observed one of the creatures through a monocular night scope and snapped a picture of a strange print in the sand the next morning. In 1987, Tyson Hughes, an English missionary, began an 18-month contract to assist the Moluccan tribespeople of Ceram Island, Indonesia to develop efficient farms. Tyson heard stories about a terrifying creature called the Orang-bati (“men with wings”) that possesses enormous leathery wings like a bat and live in the caves of Mount Kairatu, an extinct volcano situated in the center of the island.