Australopithecus sediba MAY BE AN ANCESTOR OF THE BIGFOOT SPECIES
Written by Emily Fleur & edited by Connor Anderson
Bigfoot is perhaps the most widely debated mystery. Many experienced researchers and scientists believe this creature to be an undiscovered great ape. However, new theories rooting Bigfoot’s origin in humanity need to be researched. In order to determine if Bigfoot is closer to the Homo branch of the evolutionary tree, we must dive into what it means to be human. Nine species of Homo have been identified in our fossil record. This includes H. habilis, H. heidelbergensis, H. naledi, H. neanderthalensis, H. rudolfensis, H. erectus, and H. sapiens, which is what we call modern humans today. Alongside Homo on the tree, we have Australopithecus and Paranthropus, non-human species with morphology resembling both ape and human. All species on our evolutionary tree are defined as hominins, the group consisting of modern humans, extinct human species and all our immediate ancestors (including members of the genera Homo, Australopithecus, Paranthropus and Ardipithecus.)
Pictured below: A.sediba skull layered over the Patterson Gimlin film creature
the CORRELATION between sasquatch & the cave punan DISCOVERY
The origins of Sasquatch have been widely debated by researchers from across the globe. How do we find out what Sasquatch is when evidence is so scarce? The answer lies in known species. When analyzing the physical attributes of this creature, we conclude that its origin points to either man or ape. However, with either conclusion, a question still begs: How have they remained undetected for so long? The answer lies in the intelligence of this species. The reported behavior of Sasquatch has seemed to pull its origins closer to human than ape. Let’s take a ride through the world’s greatest jungles, to discover the correlation in lifestyle between indigenous people and the North American Sasquatch.
If Sasquatch is an adapted indigenous people, how could they have remained hidden for so long? We must observe existing remote hunter-gatherers to analyze the skills and adaptations needed to survive in the wild. Steve Lancing is an anthropologist working in the islands of Indonesia since 1971. Indonesia consists of 17,000 islands and is known for having the greatest diversity of human genes and languages on the planet. In 2018, Lancing and a few colleagues were working on genetic studies, communicating with Indonesian scientists to uncover their unknown ancestors and produce medication for local diseases. Lancing was holding a medical clinic in a resettlement community in Borneo when the leader of a resettled Punan indigenous group approached him, advising him that a small group of Punan people were still living in remote caves as hunter-gatherers. (CLICK READ MORE TO CONTINUE)
Bigfoot is characterized as a large, bipedal creature covered in hair with long arms, toned muscles, and an appearance representing a combination of man and ape. The question of how such a species could exist alongside ours without having been discovered by our scientific community is baffling to many; individuals tend to boast that if this creature ever did exist, it must be extinct by now, otherwise we would have discovered it. However, we are not lending this creature’s intelligence, and possible origins enough credit. Today we take a walk back through time; we will dissect the evolution of apes and man to discover clues about how a man-like species might survive as long as us, without directly competing and remaining elusive. How did it get here, and how intelligent could it be? We will piece together the characteristics of Ardipithecus, Paranthropus, and Australopithecus to determine which branch of bipedal man and ape-like creatures Bigfoot may have descended from. Ardipithecus was the very first ape species to walk bipedally. They are the closest link we have to primates. This species was rather small and primitive, so Bigfoot stemming off of this branch is unlikely.
The next two groups of evolved human-like species were Australopithecus and Paranthropus. These groups both walked upright but differed in some characteristics. For example, Paranthropus aethiopicus had large megadont teeth and a very strong jaw. Perhaps the most important feature to note on this species was a developed sagittal crest (slightly pointed head at the top of the skull) which allowed for huge chewing muscles. Since the muscles that connected toward the back of the crest were so strong, these creatures were able to chew very well with their front teeth. Unfortunately, very few remains of this species have been found. Just like other creatures from the Paranthropus genus, Paranthropus boisei had adaptations for strong chewing. A prominent sagittal crest on the midline of the top of the skull connected large chewing muscles from the top and side of the braincase to the lower jaw. This anatomy moved the species’ jaw up and down very mechanically. This creature had huge cheek teeth four-times the size of a modern human’s and the thickest dental enamel of any known early human. Because of their sagittal crest and larger cranial capacity, this species had a fast-growing brain. Remember, food equals intelligence in the equation of evolution.
The Australopithecine group was known for land and tree-dwelling, with adaptations for both walking and climbing. These creatures had traits of both humans and apes. For example, Australopithecus anamensis has a shin bone showing a human-like placement of the ankle joint, which points to frequent bipedalism. However, their long arms and strong wrist bones indicate their climbing abilities which likely lasted close to 1 million years. These multi-functional limbs supporting walking and climbing were also found in Australopithecus africanus, whose round cranium housed a large brain, and Australopithecus afarensis, whose children matured quickly after birth. Australopithecus afarensis is one of the longest-lived and best-known early human species, surviving for more than 900,000 years (four times as long as our own species has been around.) Perhaps their land and tree adaptations allowed them to excel and sustain as a species for so long. After Australopithecus and alongside the Paranthropus group came Homo.
(CLICK READ MORE TO CONTINUE)
Cliff Barackman, who grew up in in Long Beach, California, and now lives in Oregon, is one of the most accomplished Bigfoot researchers in the field. Because of his dedication to Bigfoot research, Cliff has appeared in various media outlets and has written extensively on the subject. His work has been featured in student reports, newspaper articles, video documentaries, and more. In 2007, Cliff appeared on History Channel’s “Monsterquest” in the episode entitled “Legend of the Hairy Beast,” which featured Cliff and James “Bobo” Fay investigating reports and visiting with Native tribes to gather historical information about the creature. Along with documentaries, he has appeared on many internet radio shows, and was a featured guest on “Coast to Coast with George Noory.” In Spring, 2010, Cliff was a guest in an episode of the A&E series, "Strange Days with Bob Saget", and is currently being featured in Animal Planet’s series, Finding Bigfoot, where he works with colleagues James “Bobo” Fay, Matt Moneymaker, and Ranae Holland. Cliff is not only a dedicated researcher, but a wonderful character as well. he agreed to answer some of your most asked questions about Bigfoot! Read below to find out if your question has been answered!
Interview with Cliff Barackman:
1.Bigfoot has been described as a bipedal ape-like man. Do you believe it could be a surviving hominid, or do you believe it to be an ancestor of Gigantopithecus?
Cliff: "Sasquatches are definitely a surviving hominid, but all apes and humans are hominids, which means they are in the family Hominidae. The question would be if they are a surviving hominin, which is defined as being in the lineage or an offshoot of human beings. Hominins include Australopithecus all the way up to present day Homo sapiens sapiens, and all the offshoots thereof. This is most likely the case for sasquatches as well. At the same time, it is entirely possible that Gigantopithecines were also an offshoot of the Hominin lines. So little is known about them (though much is speculated), that it is impossible to say at this point."
2.What are some common behaviors that you’ve seen/heard in a Bigfoot report?
Cliff: "Most of the time when a Bigfoot is encountered, besides the mere shock of the event, it is rather a dull affair. The Sasquatch typically either walks/runs away, or it watches the observer and then walks away. Some atypical reports would include intimidation displays, such as yelling, growling, throwing and breaking objects, stomping, or even bluff charges."
3.If Bigfoot is so large, how could it remain so elusive?
Cliff: "They are large, but not significantly larger than a brown/grizzly bear. Many members of the species, if not most, are smaller, perhaps the size of a large black bear. These animals also largely stay out of sight. Sure, there are many reports of seeing bears, but there are probably at least 100 bears for every Bigfoot. The numbers are in favor of Bigfoots being rarely seen. When one adds to this that Sasquatches seem to be mostly nocturnal, very smart, hyper aware of their surroundings, and want nothing to do with us, it seems natural that they would rarely be seen."
4.Could you give me your best description of a Bigfoot’s features?
Cliff: "In general, adult Sasquatches range from six to eight feet or so in height, and they probably weigh between 400 and 1,200 pounds. They are generally human-like in shape, but covered, with hair (except on parts of the face, the palms, and bottom of the feet) with wider shoulders, longer arms, and a lower-placed head that often seems to rest on the shoulders (they do have a neck, of course, but their muscles can often obscure this). The hair covering is dark, usually brown or black, with a reddish tinge when seen in the right lighting conditions. They are often described as having an overhanging brow ridge, and a head that slopes away from the forehead in a conical shape. Their noses are wide and broad, though not ape-like."
5.How many do you think there are?
Cliff: "I guess that there are probably between 8,000 and 10,000 individuals in North America, give or take a few thousand. This sounds like a lot, but would make them one of the rarest large animals."
6.Based on your research of footprints, how does Bigfoot’s anatomy differ from humans or apes?
Cliff: "The footprints indicate that the Sasquatch foot is proportionally wider than a human foot. It also seems to be flexible in the mid section of the foot, just like the feet of other apes. In other words, Bigfoots lack the rigid arch that the human foot has. The ankle is shifted forward on the foot, which is a biomechanical redesign of the human foot in order to accommodate their larger mass."
7.Have you come across many hair samples? What were the results of DNA testing?
Cliff: "I've seen a couple purported hair samples, but the ones I've been directly involved with have not produced testable DNA."
8.If one were to come across a Bigfoot, what would your advice be?
Cliff: "Savor the moment. It might never happen again. Oh, and take a photo if possible."
to learn more about Cliff Visit http://cliffbarackman.com/
Cliff Barackman, Bigfoot Researcher, http://cliffbarackman.com/
"About Cliff." CliffBarackman.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 15 May 2017.
In the Great Rift Valley of Ethepoia, about 300,000,000 years ago, an upright hominin lived. Her name? Lucy. She was determined to be the first Australopithecus africanus found in the region. By examining her knee bone structure and spine, scientists determined that Lucy walked primarily upright, however she did climb trees to seek shelter, which resulted in her death from falling. This species of hominin (an early human ancestor) measured about 3 feet tall and weighed 60 lbs. Their brain was the size of an orange and they began to evolve human-like features. Because of this discovery, scientists are able to further link ape and human, and determine how modern humans were the species to ultimately out-live other hominins….or so we think. Bigfoot is described as a bipedal ape-like creature, and whose description has a striking resemblance to a hominin. Could it be that a mystery species survived along modern humans, remaining undetected? What would it take to make it through millions of years? Lucy, and other hominins might reveal the answer.
Archeological research shows that Homo erectus, our early ancestor, actually constructed stone tools. Because of their ability to hunt, they were now consuming high-energy food: meat. This energy would be enough to power and grow the brain, increasing intelligence. This would eventually lead to an increase in population. Research suggests that the Bigfoot population remains in the thousands, which many assume will lead to extinction. However, the early Homo-Sapiens population was extremely small, and bones are rarely found. The early Homo-Sapien resembled something of a modern man from Africa, with a round braincase and a flat face. Similar to Homo erectus, Homo-Sapien used stone tools to gather high energy food. This could be how Bigfoots hunt their prey, and combined with their massive size and power, they could have easily competed with Homo-Sapien.
Because of their newly created stone tools, humans began to hunt. However, they would soon run into some major dilemmas while catching prey: becoming prey themselves. Humans had to be extremely organized while hunting in order to avoid large cats and other predators. This need for organization eventually evolved the intelligence of the Homo-Sapien brain. This type of social culture would evolve us into what we are today. Similar organization has been reported in many eye witness accounts of Bigfoot. Many witnesses report seeing more than one creature in the same area, and some have even heard a sort of signal system using whistles and tree knocks back and forth in order to catch deer. This similarity to the style of ancient Homo-Sapien hunting is striking. Aside from eating, the human brain development took place when migration kicked in. When land became bone dry, humans were forced to regroup and migrate. Evidence discovered of a 100,000 year old artifact suggests that the Sans people stored water in empty Ostrich eggs while traveling, and during migration they hunted and cooked over fire. Experts believe Homo-Sapiens may have used similar methods. Their brains were growing and they were evolving. During this time, a form of verbal language was also present. Such language can be compared to Bigfoot’s language which is often described by eye witnesses as a gibberish grunting sound.
Although another species of hominin, Neanderthals, were skilled hunters with large builds, their intelligence wasn’t enough to compete with Homo-Sapiens. Homo-Sapiens had greater technological skills and the ability to relate objects with one another. While Neanderthals developed stone tools, humans developed more intricate hunting tools along with representations of them. *CLICK READ MORE TO CONTINUE*
There's a big difference in how a human walks vs. how a bigfoot walks
Bigfoot evidence can be considered credible at times, and a complete hoax at others. But how can one tell the difference? The answer lies in the anatomy of the creature-anatomy that cannot physically be recreated by a human. Through digital analysis of the famous Patterson-Gimlin film, the creature’s size of 7’6.5” was determined. However, one does not need scientific skill to distinguish a Bigfoot from a human hoaxer. In fact, there is a 21 degree difference between Bigfoot’s stride and a human’s, which is often the line that draws the two apart. When a human walks, they lift their foot 52 degrees off of the ground, whereas a Bigfoot lifts theirs 73 degrees. Such an anatomical difference is why the Patterson-Gimlin film has been proven not to be a hoax. In the most credible photography and videography evidence of the creature walking, it represents the same image: a back leg that bends at an extremely abnormal angle, not possible for modern human anatomy to recreate. Such anatomy can be supported in the way the creature steps.
After close examination of hundreds of credible footprints, scientists have been clued in to why the creature walks the way it does. A human has a longitudinal arch, which means the entire foot is incorporated into the lever which propels it off of the ground, and weight is pushed to the ball of the foot. The bending happens on the toes, providing traction. In a foot with mid-foot flexibility, like the subject in the film, the weight is not concentrated on the ball of the foot, but rather the midfoot. A Mid-tarsal break causes weight to transfer from rear to forefront and is most commonly present in apes. By piecing the evidence together, it can be determined that the way the footprints are formed lies in the way the creatures walks, which can be proven by geometry, to be 21 degrees different than a human.
Many skeptics in the Bigfoot community believe such footprints to be pure hoaxes. However, large, humanlike footprints do not stray far from current scientific discoveries. About 9 miles from the Ol Doinyo Lengai Volcano in Tanzania, Africa, a huge collection of Homo sapien (modern human) footprints were found solidified by a previous lava spill. However, just because the word “modern” is used in our name, one must not draw the conclusion of these prints being recent. The prints date back to up to 12,000 years ago, and imply a lot of jogging that took place by our own kind. Some suggested up to a 12 minute-mile running pace, and others revealed a misshapen big toe. Interestingly enough, protruding big toes are often seen in Bigfoot tracks, and many eye witnesses report seeing the creature running at a shocking speed. As much as many do not wish to admit, this creature is eerily close to us in the sense of anatomy, and even behavior. Our own kind left evidence of running, stepping, and jogging through the natural elements. How could Bigfoot be much different? If this creature is-in-fact, a hominid, it would surely leave tracks just as we once did some 12,000 years ago. The real question becomes: What is the creature leaving these tracks?
What do you think? Leave a comment below & stay tuned for more posts!