Episode 11: The Moehau Man -Part 2 & Big Cat Sightings

Welcome back to the second part of the Moehau man episode…. In today’s episode we conclude the conversation with my guest Marc Coppell and his experiences with this creature. Then I’ll discuss briefly Anomalous Big Cat sightings in New Zealand, and there have been very many of these – which continue to this day. Actually it was sightings reported in the NZ media in the past couple of months, of this huge cat.  ThaMart actually was the reason these NZ episodes were created to begin with. Plus, I’ll briefly mention a couple of other lesser know cryptids…. So this episode will be a little longer than normal.  Without further ado, let’s begin!

Marc Coppell

Marianne: You mentioned that you would like to spend some time on Mt Moehau

Marc: Yes, I would actually like to spend some time on the mountain. It – Mount Moehau there is over there on the north- eastern side of New Zealand. It’s a beautiful, beautiful mountain range. You can go and fish, get a scnapper off the beach there. It’s very pristine, very picturesque. There’s also… The mountain range has its own biodiversity up there, it’s the Archer tree frog and it’s species up there that are not found anywhere else in the world…

There’s also…. It also has a sacred aspect to it where some of the Maori have carried their dead up this…. Some three thousand foot, close to I think, about nine hundred metre mountain. This is the highest peak in the area. So you can see it on a clear day, from Auckland. But this is where they are supposed to be. If you go into the history, back to the eighteen- nineties, eighteen- eighties…. They had all the gold prospecting that took place out there.

The Maori they warned the prospectors about going out at night time. And, these things were carnivorous…. They would, they could easily take down a warrior. There was reports I believe, of eighteen-eighty…. There was a headless prospector found, who had been mauled, and it’s any one’s guess or speculation as to what did it. We know know that wild pigs can do that to people. I spoke to a lady whose friend died by getting attacked from a wild pig. I’ve actually seen them in the area that I go to. I carry a machete with me…. Like, when you’re by yourself. You’ve got to be prepared for anything to go wrong, or…. But where pretty safe generally, here in New Zealand. At least from animals.

Hahah yeah, safe from animals.. No snakes here.

Yeah, that’s a great thing. Like in America I always had to think about that. Especially around summertime.

So how is your work being accepted generally? What sort of feedback are you getting from the general public?

Openly, it’s pretty hush hush…. Oh look, I’ve had people say  – Family members…. Don’t you go into this subject. Like, it’s caused a stir. Some of my family have  seen ghosts and UFOs though but this subject…. Look, I had no idea there was bigfoot here in New Zealand. You know, and now I want answers. And how does it connect to us? Are they related to us?  You know? You look at foot prints – they’re often described as being apes. You look at their foot prints, now that’s not an ape footprint. You don’t see an opposing thumb. Instead it’s a foot print that’s got a minimal arch to it. Very minimal. A lot sturdier than a homosapian’s print.  

So you know, what are they? Who are they? And I believe that they are very, highly intelligent people. That are on the edge of our dimension. I don’t know about other beings, other ape-like beings around the world. The yowie, the urin in china, the satsquach in North America, I…. Could there be ones that are more flesh and blood? I don’t know. I’m trying to understand. I’m trying to answer it, but I have been getting interaction.

But, I think…. See, a lot of researchers – well, I can’t say a lot. You’ve got to treat them with respect. Because they are highly empathic. They’ll pick up if you are there to do them harm. They’ll pick that up off you.  And, because I go with a lot of respect I don’t treat them like a scien…. Yes, I do, I do…. Do prints and that, but it’s for my own sanity. It’s helps me to say oh look, I don’t have psychosis. You know, I want to be level headed when doing this. I mean look, even Sir Edmund Hillary went out…. I think it was in 1960? He went looking for evidence of the Yeti in the Himalayas. He had come back with I think, some sort of skull cap, or something, I forget what it was.

And there was another man, over from Australia, that had come over – a cryptozoologist, and he found prints as well. Author…. I’m trying to think. I can’t think of his name off the top of my head.  And there was another man, by the name of Gary O…. oh, I forget his last name. But, he’s a zoologist and he goes into the Australian wild and he has to know every single sound of the creatures out there, and be able to identify them. Well he has said that there is stuff out there that he has heard, that is not known to man, or science – general science. It’s not known.

So he wrote the world’s first cryptozoological paper on the Yowie, and presented it. It was published in one of the scientific journals over there. So it was quite interesting to hear from this man about, oh a month ago. But there are various people that come forward. I’ve got people who work for the government. I’ve had hunters. I’ve had people who are skeptics. I’ve had people that were believers as well. A variety of people that have contacted me with their accounts. So these are not just things that happened back in the seventies, or the sixties or around the nineteen-hundreds, this, this is stuff going on today.  

Could you share a couple of experiences you’ve heard perhaps? If you are comfortable doing that?

Yeah. I had one man, when I first started doing my research – people found me through my YouTube videos. I just started recording and putting stuff up and I get people, a lot of people that way, contact me. In fact probably eighty percent of the people I get, is through YouTube.  There was one man who contacted me. He works for a department in the Government. And he has found footprints, he has found structures like what I have. Over in a certain area in the Coromandel. So he approached me and I had gotten with him, and talked with…. He had seen what I was doing and he had found some very similar things. I don’t know that he had had the bipedal approaches, and the wood knocks. But when you get all that other stuff together, it’s crazy.

I had a hunter that contacted me. I’m going…. I think he was doing possum hunting in the middle of the night and had his shotgun on, I think it was on a berm. He’s waiting there. He hears these footsteps, on this stone driveway, and he turned on his flashlight all of a sudden to spot light whatever it was, to shoot, and he said there was nothing there. He could see nothing. And he was very taken aback. When I talked about some of the bipedal approaches, I couldn’t see what was approaching me, and he sort of identified with that. Other people are just…. Like the skeptic who climbed Mount Moehau in the seventies along with two travel companions, that slept up there. He said to me, look I don’t want any mention of my name. No reference to me. I reminded my companions of what happened those decades back, and he said they didn’t want to be reminded. It terrified them. And he said, I tried to identify that howl with all kinds of creatures, but could not identify it. 

Wow, that’s pretty fascinating isn’t it? It’s pretty fascinating. I’ve always felt that myth and legend start from a basis of reality. There’s always something that’s the kernel that creates them. You know, like with the Taniwha. There’s a possibility that at least one of the versions of the Taniwha, the sea version, could in fact be a mososaur…. And so I believe that…. And I know from personal experience that there are far more things in this world, than are currently known of.

Yes, well they’re finding new species all the time, especially when they do their deep sea dives, going to these trenches at the bottom of the sea, miles under the water. They’re finding a lot of new species, they create their own light and you know…. Very, very interesting you know? And the same with insects and birds and it’s a wonder the world we live in. There’s so many life forms.

Oh yeah, absolutely.  You mentioned the other day that you were approached by a production company was it? To do a documentary spot with them?

I had a producer from the UK who does an international TV show. They were wanting me to take them out Bigfoot hunting. I don’t really like the word hunting – Investigating…. Hunting makes it sound like you are going there with rif…. I don’t do that. But, I kind of backed out. I was going to take them to right by the mountain where all this happens.  There’s actually a place you can camp. There’s a Department of Conservation camp where you can rent pretty cheap. You can set up your tent, and you can go up by that mountain there where all the history is. I wanted to take them there but the producer said, no, no, he would never go camping. Well, he was an older fella but you know, I backed out of it.

But yeah…. You can get your face on TV if you wanted to but, it can be hard for your production companies to come in and get footage. For example; when I was doing my Skinwalker ranch stuff I had a production company, contact me over there as well. Seeking the contacts that I had over there with the Ute people. The tribe, and…. Look I’ll tell you, they put out a movie and a documentary after mine on Skinwalker ranch. They were not able to capture any of the phenomena, however I did. Mine was kind of a low budget, very rough and ready but I captured some of these. I captured these light anomalies and the strange Bigfoot like call and the rock hitting by us, and these electronic voice phenomena as well.

And so I feel like I’ve got a good feel and this…. That they’re attracted to me, because I’m respectful to them, and look, I want to know the truth.  Also, I think I wanna find…. It gives me some kind of answers to things I have had happen in my life too. Growing up. Some of the very strange stuff that happened.    

Right, right. That’s so awesome. So where do you go from here? You’re trying to get funding raised to be able to create this documentary. Do you have a production team organized to help you? You mentioned you had a cameraman lined up….

Yes. Well, I just gave him some warning. I said look this whatever you may see with me, may change your understanding of reality. And so when I actually went looking for a cameraman, I made…. I put that straight up front, I said I need someone fit, because, going into these areas you need a little bit of climbing ability. And see, even me with my back stuff – it’s a challenge. But yes, I…. Like I warned him, I said this could…. This could kind of freak you out if something…. I mean, I can’t guarantee that something will happen with the camera rolling, but with me, it has happened. So it could happen, and just be prepared for that.

And so this man I found, he has a deep interest in the subject matter and so…. Ah, there’s also a researcher by the name of Darren Weblock, he wants to…. He would like to go with me to by Mount Moehau there where I captured those anomalies, and so he would like…. I’ll show him that, and we can work something out, and so yeah, I’m kind of getting together with people. A lot of what I have been doing, has been solo which is kind of hard….Oh it’s good in one way, you keep it very private. No one can come an hoax you, but then what happens if an emergency happens? You have no cell reception….

It’s good to have someone there, who can hear something with you. I record everything up there. I wanna capture whatever’s going on. I get a lot of audio stuff. Some of the chant…. Oh look, I pick up chanting. I pick up really super bizarre stuff. Look, this is…. This is wild! And, I feel like I’ve hit ground zero for a spot with activity. So I’ve kept it very secret on purpose. Cause, there are aspects to getting out there…. That it’s challenging to get out to, but also I don’t want to lose access to that area. It’s a great research area, it’s a great tool for this kind of thing.

Absolutely! I totally understand that, and I’m really excited for you. I think that what you are doing is really awesome and I can’t wait to see what you are able to capture and…. Gosh I would, be keen as to be part of your investigation party, and to do whatever I could in this area, ‘cause, I absolutely am fascinated, and I agree with you. I agree with what you are doing and I think that it’s just the need to know isn’t it? It’s just the need to know

Yes… I mean you’ve had your experiences with very strange things eh and…. You can run from it, or you can approach it with a sense of maturity and open-mindedness and…. Wherever that path leads, and the truth might be disturbing, you know? Look, I’ll be honest, I’ve come across some very bad stuff. I’ve been attacked by entities. Some of them have…. Some of them are very powerful. So I’m pretty brave with going out…. I did work with a psychic medium while I was in America, helping people with very bad hauntings and that, so I’ve been exposed to all kinds of things And look it makes it sound…. You sound crazy talking about this stuff, but when you’ve had something happen, you’ve got to wonder about quantum physics and other dimensions around us, you know? You’ve got to start opening your mind to stuff   

I love quantum physics. I love it! It’s absolutely fascinating, and it just raises more questions. Questions, and questions, and then of course you get into the holographic reality question, and when you look at that, then some of these other things you know don’t… they seem like they might fit in a bit more, you know?

Yeah um…. I know Dr Jacques Vallée, who’s been a famous UFO researcher – Look, I know he’s studied this phenomena for a long time like the UFO aspect. But even he admitted there seems to be some sort of psychic aspect to this, that may be trying to connect to us on an individual layer – maybe some kind of conscious aspect to it, you know?  There’s a very nut’s and bolts aspect, but there also seems to be a possible spiritual aspect to it as well. Look, as I’m doing this Bigfoot stuff, I’m exploring what they call the woo, or supernatural aspect. It’s not so popular to…. A lot of the people are straight flesh and bloodies, but look, a lot of the people once you start getting into this and do field investigations, actually go out into the field. Go where they supposedly are – Some of them are finding these prints simply stop and disappear. Some of them are actually having visual contact and they’re just disappearing!  Is it that they’re just so good at camouflaging? Is it… do they jump up a tree? Are they actually changing into another dimension? I’d love to know, but see when I did my study on Skinwalker ranch a lot of what took place there is making sense of what I am experiencing now. It seems to meld together more… At least to me it seems to.

Yeah, yeah, no.  I totally get what you are saying. And, I’ve always been of the opinion that…. That I don’t know about all instances, but certainly some instances I’ve heard of – particularly in there early days there was a  – an awesome radio show host, by the name of Art Bell. He’s the king – the king of talk back. He’s my radio hero. I loved his subjects, and I remember on a couple of occasions he did shows about…. covering, the Bigfoot. Several of the guests that he had on at different times, mentioned that, that they felt that these beings were inter-dimensional because of the way they can appear and disappear like that!

Like we never get a body! We get trace evidence, supposedly scat and supposedly hair samples, blood samples. I know there was Dr Melba Ketchum who did the Sasquatch genome project as well. I’ve heard for and against of that study. But interesting saying that, that the maternal side DNA was human female. The male side is a unknown. Not in the gene bank, and the gene bank contains what? Millions of specimens. DNA samples so, it’s really interesting to hear that. It might also fit into some of the biblical aspects with you know, people talking about the angels of god interbreeding with the daughters of men kind of thing, and that aspect. I just keep an open mind and it’s very interesting.   

It’s absolutely fascinating and I am right behind you. I can’t wait to see, I can’t wait to see what comes out of this, and I know it’s probably a little-ways down the track yet, cause it’s a funding issue. So hopefully people can help support you. I will put a link to your give a little page on the podcast website, so my listeners, whoever would like to help out they can make a donation towards the cause.  And I’m really happy to do that for you cause I’m fascinated, and…

Thank you

Yeah, no I really, I genuinely mean that I’m absolutely fascinated by this and I think it is a wonderful thing that you are doing. I’m a bit jealous actually…. I’m a bit jealous that you can do this, cause it’s something that I would love to do myself. But you know – different areas eh… we all have different areas that we are drawn to in this sort of thing.

The question I have Marianne, is why me? Why did I have this stuff happen to me back in New Zealand? I mean, if you listen to that recording from that paranormal investigation – “Accept the bigfoot people. Big people” repeated, and then all the stuff that happened out in the wild – I was asking myself why? Why, they could have just stayed back and stayed hidden and I would have just gone on my merry way. But look, through ITC, my research it says, they basically said they wanted a friendship with me, that’s all. It’s as simple as that!  And then I had some…. I’ve had some other things as well, related to the woo aspect of big foot. Yeah, some very strange things. Including having my life saved and some very bizarre stuff. I mean, I’ve gone down the rabbit hole on this whole subject.

You mentioned you had your life saved. Do you want to share that experience with us? It sounds really interesting.

Well, we’ve talked about there’s a possible inter dimensional aspect to them, well I’m very firm – quite firm on that. I had a problem, with like what I’ve said I had health issues. Well, I do have a titanium plate fusion in my spine. And so, I’ve had a lot of pain issues and that…. Spine issues. I had a problem with a medication… two pain medications, very powerful. Nearly killed me! I thought I was having a heart attack. One of the medications sent me into paranoia – so I also have to consider, what happened to me? Was I hallucinating?

Well, I was having heart problems and I had saw, this shadow-like creature came running up to me – shoved something into my heart area…. Now the ambulance people told me afterwards, we don’t know how you are still alive! So putting that with what happened…. They also said, had told me through my ITC research, that yes, we’ve saved your life. We helped you. Basically the messages are love too. But look, I’m trying to understand what this all means?  What does it mean for you and me? What does it mean for humanity too? Is it something to be feared? Could there be ones that take people? You know, as the Maori thought, were violent.    There’s some people I’ve talked to that have said they have had violent encounters with them. Now I know they can move incredibly fast. We could not out run them! You see, in the bush there’s just no way you can get away. If they wanted you dead, you would be dead!  They have immense strength, and speed and goodness knows what other abilities? I had somebody from the Australian defence force contact me…. And I’d like to read a quote to you if you don’t mind?

Sure! No go ahead.

If I can just see if I can find it here…. You know. It’s like when you do research you have all these notes around you and you want to…

Good thing you can’t see my desk!

(Laughing) It’s all part of researching [? – last word slightly inaudible]. This is what he said to me:

“Let’s make something abundantly clear, the SAS or Special Air Service, and members of the wider ADF, Australian Defence Force, know about the Yowie. The Yowie is the Australian version of the Bigfoot. We have had encounters in training and on exercises”

He then went onto say this guy was messing with you…. That was in regards to – I had someone who was a supposed SAS soldier, that contacted me, kind of mocking me and saying, “Oh come on – these things, I’ve never seen anything like that!”    Well, I’ve got somebody from the Australian military that has contacted me and says that they all…. They’re quite well aware of them over there in the wilderness.

Wow…. Yeah, yeah! That tends to lead us down conspiracy paths somewhat, doesn’t it? And I don’t want to go there, ‘cause, that’s a whole ‘nother episode in itself.


Government conspiracies…. But, I do agree with you. That’s all I’ll say on that. But yeah, very, very interesting. Is there anything that you would like to share with the listeners, about what you’ve learned or what might be useful for them to know if they ever come into a situation where they maybe run into one of these?

Well…. They supposedly, from different people, have the ability to instil fear in you. If they want you out of their area, they have different ways… A certain person, who works for another aspect of the government, which involves being in the wild a lot, told me that he had been scared out of areas – something had come after him. Had pushed down a bunch of trees…. There’s this aspect that they can instil this fear.  And you’re going to know straight away. I’m not supposed to be in this area. They don’t want me here.

And they will scare…. They will usher you out of the area. That’s what I can say. I’ve had the opposite, after these strange things happened, something else happened I haven’t told you about. This is the woo aspect, and I think people are going to say oh Marc’s on something…. Whatever!

Look, I was laying in bed one night. I couldn’t sleep, I just lay there – something came into the room, that was big, had a lot of force to it – attacked my head and gave me a date of January 13th 2017. And,  I assumed it was one of them, telling me basically to go back out there. Well, when I went back out there something really big ran past me in the bush! In a very steep area, where it’s very easy to slip.

Look, I found pigs out there, you know, the hoof marks. I found dead sheep. People…. As you do research into this you realise there’s people around the world that actually have relationships with them, with these tribes, and I’m going to say, they are a people. And they are prob…. Way more intelligent than humans. Than modern man. We like to think that we are at the top of the ladder of awareness, but we aren’t!

I agree! I agree. I absolutely agree, and my personal feeling is that they…. That the reason you’re probably accepted is because they’re very sensitive to energy, they pick up on energy, and they’re telepathic, I believe.

Oh for sure, yeah!   I have no doubt about that whatsoever,

Yeah so that’s absolutely awesome, absolutely awesome. So, let me see…. I think you’ve covered some really awesome stuff.

You know what’s really interesting Marianne, is that not only did prospectors have experiences and tourists, but also the Maori themselves…. They…. Look, long before the Europeans came here they had experiences, and they said that these beings would throw rocks at them! Now what throws rocks? Well, we know through research, that that’s the way they get attention, or scare people out.  So it’s interesting that same thing, you know with the legends of the Maori too.

Yes, that is very interesting and of course I started the episode talking about the Maori legends. I didn’t even know, until I was researching cryptids in New Zealand, that we even had our own Bigfoot here. So that was a real learning experience for me. Although I do have to say, there have been times when I’ve been out in the bush, ‘cause, quite often I used to bush walk by myself, because, I just enjoy the… It’s safe in New Zealand to do that. Well, it used to be – not so safe these days though sadly. You know, you could, you could. And like yourself, there were times, when I felt like I was being observed. I never felt unwelcomed, ‘cause, I didn’t go into any area with any intent, other than respect, and like you said, respect is the key.

Right, for sure!

And intent is paramount as well. I always tell members of my Walking the Shadowlands Fb group that intent is everything.

Hmmm yes, oh for sure. It’s that way with all these other beings you know?

Yes absolutely.

You give out respect and you get back respect, you know in a lot…. Unless it’s something negative, there are negative things out there but generally speaking, yes, I think respect goes a long way when you’re doing this kind of thing.

Yes absolutely, I agree…. And with regards to the ones that perhaps may eat…. The legends where the Maori said that people might get eaten, it’s possible. That’s quite possible, because you know, it might be a different species or different…. Like not everybody has good intentions, and I’m sure it’s the same in any species.

Yes, yes. There could be ones that have just had a bad day. Or, they get pissed off because someone’s doing something in their area or something.  

Yeah, yeah right!

But yeah…. I mean, I don’t know – yeah there could be some that you know might! You know that might!  – Like I was contacted by some aborigines over in Australia that had come to me and said, look they eat, and take some of our people. The Yowies.  But then they went and retracted their comment later on, oh I don’t know why. But, it’s interesting. I guess you could ask the question how many bigfoot researchers go missing?   

That’s a very good question. I haven’t heard of any.

Yeah, so – you’ve probably heard of the missing 411 where people go missing in National parks. And a lot of those areas, there’s a strong connection – those are bigfoot areas where people go missing. However, it doesn’t necessarily mean, it’s the Bigfoot people that are doing it. And there are other beings reported too, as well out there, not just the Bigfoots. So….

Correct. So very interesting. So here’s hoping that your documentary will be able to collect some evidence that people can look at it and go oh wow!

Well, they can listen to some audio that I’ve captured already…. I’ve got wood knocks on audio, I’ve got the voices. I’ve got them responding to me in a number of ways. Just that Sasquatch interaction video, if you listen through headphones…. I mean, I wore a mike in my pocket cause I was having a problem with my gopro sound. But, I picked up these deep voices that were responding to me, and along with pulling the tree back I couldn’t see any birds. There’s the footsteps. There’s the tree knocks. There’s the mimic. So I have got stuff like that already. People they can watch my stuff for free on my YouTube channel. Just have to look up those videos but I’ve already got some amazing stuff and I have no doubt that that I’ll…. I mean, so I’m not in a rush… I’m not going to force this in anyway, it’s going to go in a very nice, flowing, natural manner.  And I think when you have that air in your aura, when you go and do this, it reflects to them and they can communicate with you better, or they can trust you better, you know?

I agree, I agree. So I’m really looking forward to following you and seeing what happens Marc. Maybe we can catch up some other time with – you know, progress. I think all my listeners would be quite interested in that, and by that stage I might have a few more than I have now. So yeah, that’s really cool. I’ve really enjoyed this chat Marc. Thank you so much for agreeing to do this. I know that you’re really busy, and especially on such short notice.  I was so excited to be able to talk with  you and it’s been really wonderful. Thank you.

Well, thank you for giving me the opportunity to come on your show. Thank you very much. 

I feel very strongly that you are going to get more evidence than you anticipate.

Yeah I hope so look, what my goal is now is I’m trying to get a very good foot print. I found that we can see the toes and everything and they’re a lot more structured. The footprints have a lot more stronger bone structure than ours. So what I want to do is get a good print, and I want to go there….  There’s a Newshub office, I want to go in there and see if they are interested in doing a promotional piece on my research and that so I’ve really got my fingers crossed, but please if people to [help support the video fund], that would be much appreciated. I am doing this on the skin of my teeth. I mean, I have equipment from America from when I was over there that I’m using for this anyway, but you know, it’s not something that pays well….

No you can’t make a living off of it can you? It’s definitely a labour of love for sure!.

For sure yeah.   

I’m really hoping that my listeners will get behind you and help you. Certainly I’ll do everything that I can within my limited range to make sure that you get, that you get…. you know…. At least my people know, and the members of my facebook group.

Yeah. no, I really appreciate any of that. I mean you’ve already donated and I really appreciate it very much. I think this subject affects all of us, whether we realise it or not. Who we are as humans, and the spiritual aspect, and they can be…. These beings can be involved in our lives and sometimes…. Look, I had a remote viewer contact me, and she had some very strange things start happening after she checked out an area –  I asked her to check out this particular area.   Just earlier today she contacted me. “Marc what’s going on outside my home?” You know, I’m not…. Strange things starting to go on so…. I know they have abilities to do things, and so the best thing is not to panic, and put on a smile and most things are nice out there. Yes, there are some bad things but, I think if you have that love in your heart I think it lends well to your auric field and it kind of repels the bad stuff.  

I agree, and one of the things I always put on my Instagram posts is “Love is All” And really, I know that’s an old hippy saying, and you know, some people use it very tritely. But it’s actually true, love is what it’s all about.Thank you Marc, I really appreciate your time. That was a really interesting conversation and I hope…. I’m pretty sure that my listeners will find it really interesting as well…

Thanks Marianne, have a good one. Take care, good bye.

Alien Big Cats

Throughout the world there are numerous reports of Alien Big Cats. Alien only in that they are encountered in countries and regions dramatically outside of their normal geographic ranges. Such as large black panthers in consistently reported Great Britain, and even here in NZ.

April 18th 2019, there was a news story about a big cat sighting in the beautiful McKenzie Country of the South Island. Two days previously a North Island couple, the Cooks, were travelling state highway eight through Burkes Pass. They had pulled over to photograph the golden trees in the area, near Sawdon Station, and had taken photos and video of the area before putting their camera back in their camper. They were sitting down having a cuppa tea when they were stunned to spot the big cat.

Kevin Cook described the sighting like this:

“We were sitting down outside having a cuppa later when we noticed it about 50 metres away. It was in the shadow at the start and slowly walked down the side hill and into the grass and bracken and didn’t reappear. We really didn’t want to go looking for it because we didn’t know what it was… We thought it was cow, a calf, or a sheep but it was walking like a cat and was probably the size of a Labrador dog. When it walked slowly down the hill it walked like a cat. The tail was, however, definitely like a cat.”

They said when they got to Tekapo they were able to Google it and found that there have been numerous sightings of “big cats” in the Central South Island over many years.

Only a couple of weeks later on the 29th of April the big cat (or one similar) was again in the news, this time it made our TV stations, along with a write up on their website.

One Juliearna Kavanagh who lives in Picton, in the South Island of NZ, and her partner Warren Lewis, were driving on State Highway 1, and it was just before midnight that this incident occurred. The following is what was said to and reported by the the Seven Sharp reporter. If you follow the link on our web site www.walkingtheshadowlands.com you can watch the interview for yourself.

“The road was very quiet, she said, and they were about 10 minutes south of Ward travelling north at about 75km/h around a bend. We came around the corner and basically there it was – it was 10-15 feet in front of us,”

Ms Kavanagh said.

Ms Kavanagh said the creature bounded across the road very close in front of their car and showed up in their headlights. She described it as being much larger and longer than a domestic or feral cat, and it was black or very dark brown in colour.

“It had a big cat head and it had a very sleek, strong-looking body, and it had a huge, long tail.”

She and Mr Lewis were shocked, and checked with each other that they had both seen the same thing – a large, black, panther-like cat.

“For the first couple of minutes we just sort of looked at each other,” Ms Kavanagh said. “We couldn’t quite believe what we had seen.”

After the sighting, Ms Kavanagh called her father, who told her

“this thing’s been seen before”.

She said it was so unbelievable they had considered not reporting it for fear of being ridiculed, but eventually decided such a creature could pose a danger to unwary trampers or animals in the area. Ms Kavanagh reported the sighting to police on Saturday morning, as well as to the Ministry of Primary Industries (MPI).

She said an MPI representative called her back and questioned her in depth about what she had seen. Ms Kavanagh said she was told by the representative that MPI had received “six to eight” similar reports in recent years. She said they are absolutely sure of what they saw and that they had not misidentified the creature.

“I grew up in Southland, Warren grew up in the bush – there’s just no way in hell this was a feral cat,” she said.

These really caught my attention and reminded me of similar stories that I had heard over the years here in NZ. So I thought that I would do some more research on these animals and thus this series of episodes began
Since the 1960s, startled walkers and travellers have reported seeing large, and generally, but not always black cats from New Zealand locations such as Twizel, Cromwell, Banks Peninsula, Ashburton and Hakatere – mainly, but not always in the South Island.

  • 1966. The first reported sighting was when a woman was biking in the Twizel area when she came across what she described as a large black cat about the size of a labrador retriever and which resembled a black panther. The report did not get much attention from authorities, who wrote it off as just a misidentification of a particularly large feral cat. The cat was seen at a distance of approximately 30 metres.
    • 1977. A Christchurch woman rang police to say she’d seen a tiger outside her suburban Kaiapoi home in 1977. The laughter from them died, after large paw prints and droppings were found at nearby Pines Beach the same week. The nearby zoo, Orana Wildlife Park, insisted all its big cats were present and accounted for.
    • 1977. A security guard was convinced he saw a lion in Mangere, South Auckland.
    • 1980. Reports of large cat sighting in Newlands, in Wellington.
    • 1994. A large cat was spotted in Tawa, in Wellington
    • 1998. A sighting of a very large cat was made at the Dunstan Ranges near Cromwell, this time described as not black, but rather with a dark orange coloration, similar to a North American mountain lion. However, at the same time that this sighting occurred, people in the Mataura region of the South Island began reporting sightings of a animal of that colouring, but was similar in appearance to North American bobcat, or mountain lion.
    • 1999 brought a whole slew of sightings. One came from a hiker in Mackenzie Country, who saw a black feline similar in size to a large dog, and another still in that same month came from a paddock near Omarama, where a witness saw the same thing prowling about, described as a “black panther.” This particular cat was apparently even photographed. One of these big cat sightings was referred to as the “Moeraki Mountain Lion” This cat was seen by Canadian tourists sunning itself on rocks near Moeraki, South of Omaru. It was described as being distinctly Mountain Lion-like, something that these tourists were familiar with having seen them in their native habitat back in their country. It was described as being about 3 metres long and golden coloured. The cat on being spotted simply got up from the rocks and sauntered off out of view.
    Yet another mountain-lion like cat was seen in the Lindis pass area, in this same year. It was hiding in the undergrowth and was photographed by some British tourists. It became known as the “Lindis Lion”
    • Large cats were reported throughout the early 2000s as well, and such accounts got so common that a team of investigators went in to see what was going on, but no evidence of the creatures was to be found. It was seen in the Bushside area, and the Winterslow areas of the Ashford forest many times over the 2000 era. It was also spotted in the Anama area, Mayfield area Near Asburton. With repeated sightings in the Fairlington area, near the stockyards of the PPCS Meat works. Lake Clearwater, and in Queenstown.

• 2017 . Nick Baggott, a British Tourist. was walking around Lake Tekapo peninsula when he and partner, Juli Wood, spotted a large black cat. “It was probably about 100m to 150m away so we weren’t right up next to it but it looked much bigger than a normal cat. I mean, we were looking at it to start with going ‘what is that?’. We then realized it was very cat-like. To me it was like the size of a small lamb, so I would say two to three times bigger than I would expect a cat to be. We could see it loping across in front of us and I just got my camera out and pointed at it and got one shot but it didn’t hang around. It wasn’t racing but it made off fairly quickly. I’d say it saw us and didn’t want to hang around where we were. There had been some talk about big cats in Twizel, which is where we’re staying at the time. I was just amazed by it to be honest, I’ve not seen anything quite like that.” 

Actual photo taken of cat.

So many sightings that there are simply too many to report singly. Are these cats simply escaped exotic pets?? Given NZ quarantine laws, this is a highly unlikely scenario. Also given the countless sightings of different types of these big cats, it seems that there must be a community of both the black panther type, and the mountain lion type of cat, thriving somewhere in the wilderness. Of course it is entirely possible that some of these sightings could be passed off as feral cats, which can grown to a very large size, and eyewitness testimony can be very flawed. I guess unless one of these animals is actually captured, or really clear photo of them is obtained, we may never know. But I for one, would be watching my back if I were bush walking in any of those previously mentioned areas.

Before I finish this episode, I want to very briefly mention some other NZ cryptids, such as

The Waitoreke

The Waitoreke

The Waitoreke is described as being an aquatic mammal, similar to a river otter, or a beaver – which absolutely is something that is not native to our New Zealand Islands. These creatures have reportedly been know of by our native Maori population for centuries, and in fact have been sighted by colonizers also since the 17th century.

Captain James Cook, reported seeing them in 1773 as he entered Pickersgill harbour, in the Dusky Sound region of the Fiordland National Park, in the South Island – on board his ship the Resolution.

In the 1840’s there were sightings of this otter-like creature in Lake Hawera. Apparently this cryptid built nests very similar to the North American beaver and was also referred to by the local iwi or tribes as the Kaureke.Physically it was around the size of a cat with a bushy tail, and was a very powerful swimmer. It was also said to lay eggs.

Again it was spotted in the 1860’s, on numerous occasions with the explorer Julius von Haast stating that he had heard reports of this elusive creature, but he never found any, but he did apparently find their distinctive, webbed tracks along the Ashburton river, and it was said that he at one time had a pelt from one of these animals, although what happened to it, is unknown. In the 1900’s there were numerous sightings in the Milford track area and at Lake Te Anau.

In 1968 four of these creatures were spotted by a hunter at the Stevenburn Stream, near the Whakea river. Even as late as 1971 one was spotted by a hunter in the Hollyford River area – who watched it for a period of about 15 minutes, as it played in the water.

Then of course we have our NZ Moa, also called the Tarepo, by the Maori – now said the be extinct, although there have been the odd sightings reported over the years, and of course the elusive Haast Eagle.

But these both are more well known of NZ cryptids so I am not going to give them any further attention than that in these episodes.

So in this episode we have covered a lot of ground with our New Zealand based cryptids. We are not yet finished with NZ cryptids, legends and folklore. Our very last episode in this series of NZ cryptids will be all about one of my very favourite subjects, and that is of the fairy folk, Tūrehu, Pakepakeha, or Patupaiarehe. Just some of the names they are known about in the Maori language. I have some guests who have had personal experiences with these folk, and in one case a family who experienced them, and were terrified by the encounter. I have saved this episode for last, as it is one of my very favourite subjects so far as NZ legends and myths, or personal beliefs go.

Todays music is another traditional Maori Waita. Ko te Whaea. Again, I do not know the name of the singers, so please let me know if you recognize any of the voices.

Any questions for me at any time,  then feel free to email me at shadowlands@yahoo.com with suggestions for subjects you would like me to cover, and if I do not know of them, then absolutely I will research and learn as much as I can to share with you all.

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