Bigfoot/Sasquatch: A frame from the Roger Patterson film of 1967UPDATE: Funds are being requested from the public for Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum’s Falcon Project, using a infrared blimp to detect Sasquatch. Tax deductible donations can be made to: The ISU Foundation, for: The Falcon Project (Fund #901). Send to:

Attn: Janet Schubert
College of Science and Engineering Development Officer
ISU Foundation
921 S 8th Ave., Stop 8050
Pocatello, ID 83209-8050

UPDATE: ‘BIGFOOT’ DNA SEQUENCED IN UPCOMING GENETICS STUDY: Five-Year Genome Study Yields Evidence of Homo sapiens/Unknown Hominin Hybrid Species in North America

Here’s another press release, as of 2/13/13: “Three Bigfoot Genomes Sequenced In 5-Year DNA Study

“A team of scientists can verify that their 5-year long DNA study, currently under peer-review, confirms the existence of a novel hominin hybrid species, commonly called ‘Bigfoot’ or ‘Sasquatch,’ living in North America. Researchers’ extensive DNA sequencing suggests that the legendary Sasquatch is a human relative that arose approximately 15,000 years ago as a hybrid cross of modern Homo sapiens with an unknown primate species.”

Here is the paper’s title, contributors and one of the journals it is purportedly published in:

“Novel North American Hominins, Next Generation Sequencing of Three Whole Genomes and Associated Studies.” Authors: Ketchum MS, Wojtkiewicz PW, Watts AB, Spence DW, Holzenburg AK, Toler DG, Prychitko TM, Zhang F, Bollinger S, Shoulders R, Smith R. Journal of Advanced Multidisciplinary Exploration in Zoology. 11 January 2013

The paper also apparently is being published in DeNovo Scientific Journal, vol. 1, a new publication said to have “problems,” per Loren Coleman.

See also: Bigfoot DNA? Not so fast, many say

A subject that fascinates millions and is widely ridiculed by skeptics finds interest from various major TV channels, academic institutions and credentialed scientists.

Forensic Expert Says Bigfoot Is Real
Stefan Lovgren
National Geographic News on Bigfoot
October 23, 2003

It’s been the subject of campfire stories for decades. A camera-elusive, grooming-challenged, bipedal ape-man that roams the mountain regions of North America. Some call it Sasquatch. Others know it as Bigfoot.

Thousands of people claim to have seen the hairy hominoid, but the evidence of its existence is fuzzy. There are few clear photographs of the oversized beast. No bones have ever been found. Countless pranksters have admitted to faking footprints. Yet a small but vociferous number of scientists remain undeterred. Risking ridicule from other academics, they propose that there’s enough forensic evidence to warrant something that has never been done: a comprehensive, scientific study to determine if the legendary primate actually exists.

Jeff Meldrum, associate professor of anatomy and anthropology at Idaho State University“Given the scientific evidence that I have examined, I’m convinced there’s a creature out there that is yet to be identified,” said Jeff Meldrum, a professor of anatomy and anthropology at Idaho State University in Pocatello.

Thousands of Sightings

Sasquatch stories go back centuries. Tales of mythical giant apes lurk in the oral traditions of most Native American tribes, as well as in Europe and Asia. The Himalaya has its Abominable Snowman, or the Yeti. In Australia, Bigfoot is known as the Yowie Man.

Bigfoot advocates hypothesize that the primate is the offspring of an ape from Asia that wandered to North America during the Ice Age. They believe there are at least 2,000 ape men walking upright in North America’s woods today….

Now, Bigfoot advocates are increasingly turning to forensic evidence to prove the existence of the giant creature.

Investigator Jimmy Chilcutt of the Conroe Police Department in Texas, who specializes in finger- and footprints, has analyzed the more than 150 casts of Bigfoot prints that Meldrum, the Idaho State professor, keeps in a laboratory.

Chilcutt says one footprint found in 1987 in Walla Walla in Washington State has convinced him that Bigfoot is real….

“The bottom line is, they don’t have a body,” said Michael Dennett, who writes for Skeptical Inquirer magazine and who has followed the Bigfoot debate for 20 years.

Bigfoot buffs note that it’s rare to find a carcass of a grizzly bear in the wild. While that’s true, grizzlies have not escaped photographic documentation….

Scientific AmericanBigfoot Anatomy

By Marguerite Holloway
for Scientific American
November 19, 2007

Sasquatch is just a legend, right? According to the evidence, maybe not, argues Jeffrey Meldrum–a position he holds despite ostracism from his fellow anthropologists and university colleagues

One overcast Sunday morning in 1996, Jeffrey Meldrum and his brother drove to Walla Walla, Wash., to see if they could find Paul Freeman, a man renowned in Bigfoot circles as a source of footprint casts. Meldrum—who has followed Bigfoot lore since he was a boy—had heard that Freeman was a hoaxer, “so I was very dubious,” he recalls. The brothers arrived unannounced, Meldrum says, and chatted with Freeman about his collection. Freeman said he had found tracks just that morning, but they were not good, not worth casting. The brothers wanted to see them regardless. “I thought we could use this to study the anatomy of a hoax,” Meldrum says. Instead Meldrum’s visit to a ridge in the Blue Mountains set him firmly on a quest he has been on since.

Meldrum, an associate professor of anatomy and anthropology at Idaho State University, is an expert on foot morphology and locomotion in monkeys, apes and hominids. He has studied the evolution of bipedalism and edited From Biped to Strider (Springer, 2004), a well-respected textbook. He brought his anatomical expertise to the site outside Walla Walla. The 14-inch-long prints Freeman showed him were interesting, Meldrum says, because some turned out at a 45-degree angle, suggesting that whatever made them had looked back over its shoulder. Some showed skin whorls, some were flat with distinct anatomical detail, others were of running feet—imprints of the front part of the foot only, of toes gripping the mud. Meldrum made casts and decided it would be hard to hoax the running footprints, “unless you had some device, some cable-loaded flexible toes.”

To Meldrum, the anatomy captured in those prints and the casts of others he has examined as well as still unidentified hairs, recordings of strange calls and certain witness testimonials all add up to valid evidence that warrants study. He reviews that evidence in Sasquatch: Legend Meets Science (Forge, 2006). “My book is not an attempt to convince people of the existence of Sasquatch,” the 49-year-old Meldrum says emphatically; rather it argues that “the evidence that exists fully justifies the investigation and the pursuit of this question.”

To Meldrum’s critics—including university colleagues and scientists in his own field—that same collection does not constitute valid evidence, and Meldrum’s examination of it is pseudoscientific: belief shrouded in the language of scientific rigor and analysis….

National Geographic also has a well-done special on the subject, The Truth Behind Bigfoot:

Believers in the massive creature claim he’s half man, half primate and roams the Pacific Northwest. Join a team of experts as they use advanced scientific analysis to investigate the phenomenon to reveal what’s science, and what’s science fiction. Follow along as we break down one of the most controversial pieces of evidence… a 40-year-old film that many believe is actual video of the apelike being.

The state-of-the-art analysis of the Roger Patterson film is quite impressive, although skepticism will remain, obviously. I am reminded of the same skepticism as concerns the mountain gorilla, described by native Africans for centuries but pooh-poohed by European scientists–until it was eventually found by them. These scientists likewise contended that nothing that big could have escaped notice or not left behind physical artifacts.

History ChannelThe History Channel also weighs in with a special featuring a panel of scientists in relevant fields, both skeptical and supportive, Bigfoot A Definitive Guide:

A team of top scientists come together with one goal: to create the definitive guide to Bigfoot. Does the creature exist? And if it does where is it? And how can it survive without being detected?

Using a new interactive map the team has plotted more than 10,000 Bigfoot type sightings from around the world. These sightings are of an unidentified creature which walks on two legs and is covered in a thick layer of hair. Many of theses sightings date back over 100 years. With their expert knowledge of the natural world they are able to dismiss nearly 90% of the sightings, but what emerges is a series of global hotspots that cannot be explained which indicate that something is out there.

The team examines these global hotspots and searches for explanations including new theories that suggest we may have been looking for the wrong creature all along?

Whatever the truth, the stories surrounding Bigfoot and other such hominids around the world for hundreds of years are certainly fascinating, as are the other aspects of this investigation.

Here is another comment from Dr. Meldrum, in his article “ICHNOTAXONOMY OF GIANT HOMINOID TRACKS IN NORTH AMERICA”:

As summarized in the author’s recent book (Meldrum, 2006) all serious sasquatch researchers are well aware of the general skepticism amongst scientists and lay persons alike. For this reason it is worth pointing out that those inclined to take the probability of sasquatch’s existence seriously are either those with direct experience of seeing or hearing the animal, or seeing its tracks; whereas armchair skeptics have little or no direct field experience or knowledge of how widespread the trackway evidence is. On the other hand, a significant number of those who take the phenomenon seriously have extensive training and field experience in forensic science, wildlife biology and tracking in the montane forest of the western U.S. and Canada. Much of the more serious literature on the subject has been written by bona fide scientists with anthropological or biological credentials from recognized institutions (Sanderson, 1961; Napier, 1973; Shackley, 1983; Bourne, 1975; Krantz, 1999; Bindernagel, 1998; Sprague and Krantz, 1979; Markotic and Krantz, 1980; Haplin and Ames, 1980). These have acknowledged those cases of obvious hoaxing – which, incidentally, is indicated far less often than is commonly supposed….

That a giant ape once existed with the proportions necessary to produce a sasquatch-sized hominoid footprint is accepted. Gigantopithecus blacki is known exclusively from limited Pleistocene cave-deposits in China and North Viet Nam. Its meager fossil record consists of two mandibles and isolated teeth, which indicate an ape weighing as much as 450 kg. Presumed to have gone extinct a mere 250 Ka (Cameron, 2004), it is not hard to imagine its survival into the present within remote habitats including those North American forests periodically contiguous with its past Asian habitats. That an “extinct” giant ape is accepted by science on the basis of such scant fossil evidence, one might ask why serious consideration has been slow in coming to the hundreds of documented footprints (not to mention sightings, vocalizations, hair, scat, etc.).

The evidence for an unknown primate includes:

1. calls and shrieks (a Washington state anthropologist insists that he’s heard the whoops of a primate in the deep forest)
2. footprints
3. body prints
4. sightings
5. nests
6. body parts (hand, lower leg of young one)
7. smells
8. upturned trees
9. tree knocking
10. trails
11. habitats
12. feeding and hunting habits, such as breaking legs of deer, following salmon and elk routes
13. hair (inconclusive DNA, “no known animal” )
14. photos, film, including the Patterson Film (no one has conclusively debunked it, and there is good reason to believe it’s real)
15. rock throwing, clacking
16. native pictographs
17. marking with urine

Further Reading

Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum’s Cryptozoology Page
Bigfoot Reference Guide
Bigfoot – The Skeptic’s Dictionary
Animal Planet’s “Finding Bigfoot”
Bigfoot Encounters
Patterson-Gimlin Film
Dr. Jeffrey Meldrum’s The Relict Hominoid Inquiry project at Idaho State University
The Scientific Search for Sasquatch with Dr. Jeff Meldrum
Images of the Wildman in Southeast Asia: An Anthropological Perspective