1400 American Eyewitnesses of Living Pterosaurs

February 10th, 2010 by Nathaniel Coleman AKA Jonathan Whitcomb Leave a reply »

“A cryptozoologist estimates that at least 1400 credible eyewitnesses have seen, in the United States, over the past 29 years, large flying creatures unlike any known bird or bat: apparent pterosaurs.”

The estimate is crude, based largely on how reluctant Americans are to admit that they have seen something like a living pterosaur. But the nonfiction-book author has interviewed Americans for years, and has analyzed the resulting data. Several cryptozoology books have been written about strange flying creatures, including apparent pterosaurs. Eyewitnesses may be plentiful, but this is still cryptozoology, for no body (live or recently deceased) has yet been discovered.

A few critics using online forums have ridiculed those who believe in the possibility of a living pterosuar, but they have also often declared that there would be nothing unscientific about discovering that kind of creature. So why ridicule those who hope that the poor animals are alive?


Some key words worth trying: pterosaur, pterodactyl, ropen

Also: Cryptozoology Book (nonfiction: Live Pterosaurs in America)

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  1. One or two cryptozoologists have said that this estimate of the number of eyewitnesses is circular reasoning. Perhaps they meant that the large number (1400) was guessed at to promote belief in living pterosaurs and that this belief would support those eyewitnesses who have come forward with their testimonies (far fewer than 1400). Belief in these few eyewitnesses would then support the larger number. That would be circular reasoning except for one thing: That’s not what happened.

    It seems obvious, after reading Whitcomb’s account of this, that he is not promoting belief with the number “1400,” but simply estimating total eyewitnesses. He does promote belief with the reported eyewitness accounts; he has done this for years. Nobody has written more on the subject of living pterosaurs than he has, as far as I know, and he always seems to rely mostly on the eyewitness reports.

    Those who have recognized the significance of the eyewitness reports come to belief in living pterosaurs thereby. To them, there is nothing circular about any reasoning involved, for “1400” is simply a calculated estimate based on those eyewitness reports, which they have already come to believe.

    Those who disbelieve that any of the reported sightings are of living pterosaurs—those skeptics will also disbelieve in the larger number of estimated sightings. They will thereby dismiss “1400” and will not be involved in any circular reasoning.

    The only circular reasoning possible is with the thinking of Whitcomb himself. Since his own words do not support the opinion that he was thinking in this way, then we must conclude that there was probably no circular reasoning involved at all.