Tuesday, April 27, 2004


Before I get on with my main post, I want to give a brief summary of the main players in Australian Ufology, I have no particular bias towards any one group, however I do like PRA, UFORNSW and UFORQLD. I live in Victoria, so I have over the years been a "on & off" member of VUFORS. VUFORS is the biggest and I think oldest group in Australia. In past years it was a driving force, and was the Australian benchmark, it did everything right and well. Today it has receded like my hair to an island lost in space.

I must confess when it comes to the UFO subject I am some what bias towards its reality, I also have a healthy and active skepticism, I do not follow all the icons nor do I worship in the Temple of IKNOWITALL. I hope this will come out as I add posts to this Blog. Like most I have settled right into the WWW/NET environment and enjoy it very much. I think the WWW/NET has changed all our interplay with the subject and it is a change for the better. I now get information from many more sources, faster and in better detail than I did 30 years ago.

Another confession, with time I have turned from the pure Ufology Tower View (UTV) to the Fortean Tower View (FTV), and have found more ideas and interesting stories when I expanded my thinking. The British magazine "ForteanTimes" (ISNN 0308-5899) is my favorite read, along with the "Australian Skeptic" magazine. The only public UFO magazine that I review are the British "UFO Magazine" (ISNN 0966-1107) now closed and the "Australian Ufologist" (ISNN 1441-9173), a Queensland based publication. Some groups have their own publications and I get to read them when they are sold, some are good and some are just bad.

I also lean on some major sources of information found on the WWW/NET. One place I find impossible not to read is called UFO Updates, it is a well of interesting facts - join this list.

I also purchase the Queensland based magazine "NEXUS" produced by Duncan Roads. Not always my cup of tea, but the serious minded need to scan its many pages, to follow trend lines or just keep up on the strange world we all occupy.

With the local news and media to add to my collection I hope I can offer the reader a bite of new information or just review one of the publications or follow a groups activity, at least one idea every day, to be honest one per week will do for now.

It will not all be Ufology, as I said I am a Fortean Man and love the odd ball events that make up our odd ball world.


One interesting fact about Australian Ufology is its longevity. In fact Australia has four of the oldest groups in the world. All pre date 1965. This is quite amazing, as one would expect after the initial wave of activity, especially around the 1953 wave of sightings, groups would only last 5 to 10 years, in fact these groups are (not strong) still active 40 years on.

From the list below I would say only a few do full time research the majority produce something and the rest well come out when they want to.

My pick of the groups would be PRA, VUFORS, UFORQLD and UFORNSW. I base this on a "can do" attitude. Although the other groups have their good points the majority of the hard research "leg work" is done by these four organisations.

I have not included the independent researchers in my selection, as they have a less restrictive life and the ability to respond to a small select area, they may like, enjoy or concern them directly.

Organisations around the country are managed on a committee structured and each committee deploys money and resources to two basic functions - Research or Society Membership. I believe PRA do not work on a structured society frame, but use a group collective structure around a set of 15 to 30 researchers, PRA is well resourced for field work or the hunting process. This group structure provides the best plans and offers more chance or the ability to call upon some of the best equipment from University or Government. This collective frame also makes PRA less open to the general public, this aside, I have a lot of respect for this type of process and prefer it to the membership structure. More field work can be done using the collectives resource frame.

My experience of societies and their membership is not that happy. As members, love them or hate them, we tend to want to be entertained, this loads the committee members with endless problems and in the end little useful material comes out of the field work pipeline, lots of talk, show and meetings, then we run out of energy. The society publication and the meeting are vital. If the group does not have a publication then it can just scrape through without too many complaints, but the meeting better be good! This is the killer, the endless worry the committee must face every few months. Again my experience of sitting through meetings, tells me the format or operations of this contact stage usually brings repetition and boredom. When the committee gets the meeting mix right then it's a joy.

If you like the group meeting process and membership structure, VUFORS, UFORNSW and UFORQLD are the big ones!

The membership trends do not look that good as the WWW/NET takes over.
Memberships and subscriptions are taking a hammering and committees need to make dramatic changes and improvements to hold the tide of change.

I live in Victoria, but have attended other meetings in other states over the years. At this point in time conditions for failure are becoming more obvious and I would expect one or two of the larger groups are in trouble. It is hard to tell without being privy to the membership data, but the loss of membership numbers are critical.

Victorias VUFORS and New South Wales group UFORNSW, I have it on good advice have started to go dry in regards to membership. The UFORNSW committee is always active and very creative, so there is hope. The shining light in UFORNSW window is their ability to get functions to work. They were responsible for a collection of art work, displayed at the Liverpool Regional Museum, this idea or project is a good example of what this group can turn on when it wants too.

But VUFORS is another story, and we have little idea on what is going on at the committee level, VUFORS over the last 10 years seem to be getting quieter and quieter. We have all had to come to terms with the WWW/NET, but some groups do not participate in the life of the WWW/NET, for some unknown reason. VUFORS does have a WEB page but the committee is no where to be found?

I regard to investigations, UFORNSW seems to be lacking vital field work. I am never surprise with this group, when they come up with a project it is always good if not great.

The Queensland group UFORQLD is just as good when it comes to these functions, I am told they have a good membership structure, so that works very well for them.

For your information the following list, covers the main UFO or Ufology structures in Australia, by states.



VUFORS - Victorian UFO Research Society
PO Box 1043, Moorabbin Victoria 3189
Phone: (03 9506 7080)
Paul Norman & Clive Yates

PRA - Phenomena Research Australia
P.O. Box 523, Mulgrave VIC 3170
John Auchettl & Br Ron Barnett


UFORQLD - UFO Research Queensland Inc
PO Box 222, Brisbane Albert St BC QLD 4002
Tino Pezzimenti (07) 3256 3330

ACUFOS - Australian Centre for UFO Studies
P.O. Box 799, Mt Ommaney QLD 4074
Dr Martin Gottschall (07 3376 1780)

NEW SOUTH WALES:------------------------------

UFORNSW - UFO Research New South Wales
PO Box Q95, Queen Victoria Building
Sydney NSW 1230
Wendy Burnham (02 9808 1184)
Anthony Clarke (02 9529 3552)

SOUTH AUSTRALIA:------------------------------

AIUFOFSR - Australian International UFO Flying Saucer Research
GPO Box 2004, Adelaide SA 5001
Colin Norris 08 8272 3131

AURA - Australian UFO Research Association
G.P.O. Box 1894, Adelaide SA 5001
Keith Basterfield
Deb Payne

PFI - Paranormal Field Investigators
South Australia
Jeff Fausch
(0405 311 961)


TUFOIC - Tasmanian UFO Investigation Centre
P.O. Box 174, South Hobart, Tasmania 7004
(03 6223 6009)

WESTERN AUSTRALIA:------------------------------

P.O. Box 2001, Kardinya WA 6163
Michael Jordan


PO Box 1125, Armidale NSW 2350
Mike Farrell

P.O. Box 679, Grafton NSW 2460
(0412 459 134)

INDEPENDENT - INUFOR - Independent Network of UFO Researchers
P.O. Box 169, Katoomba NSW 2780
Moira McGhee (O2 4757 4287)

INDEPENDENT - UFOIC - UFO Investigation Centre
PO Box W42, West Pennant Hills NSW 2125
Bill Chalker (02 9484 4680)

ARC - Anomaly Research Centre
104 Howitt Street, Ballarat VIC 3350
Mark Moravec