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Biped Or All Fours?


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So far as quadruped vs biped .. the two become less exclusive if the legs are not as long relative to the arms as ours are.   We have trouble because quadrupedal locomotion positions our butts higher than our shoulders.   Shorten the legs, lengthen the arms, and the body flattens out or even slopes upwards.    Second factor to consider is the knees ... the "Patty Walk" says the knees are different than ours in some way.   It's possible that offsets what we perceive as limitations for quadrupedal locomotion as well.  

 

We're not going to know for sure 'til we get some quadrupedal version of the PGF.   'til then, all is speculation.  

 

MIB

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Exactly.

 

Cricket, all your points are well taken, and it doesn't look from that post as if you and I are going to get into an indepth debate on primate foot structure :o:D

 

But ...what MIB said.  The compliant gait and the arm length relative to leg length raise the possibility; as I said earlier, specialists note that known apes use bipedalism to a significant degree; and Edward W. Cronin, a biologist who apparently had a yeti walk through his camp in 1972, goes on at a bit of length about this possibility as well.  Plus it would appear that sasquatch has a foot much more like ours than it is like the feet of either known apes or yeti (which appears to be a pongid like the gorilla; in fact Schaller speculated a relationship to the mountain gorilla upon seeing Cronin's casts). 

 

Too much is unconfirmed at this point to do any more than speculation.  But here's an interesting report.  At the 2009 Texas Bigfoot Conference, I was in the audience when this witness described his encounter, not missing a beat from the report.  (Just as a point of interest, Peter Matthiessen was in the audience too.) Of the reports I have read describing quadrupedal locomotion, this is probably the most detailed, but I've read many.  There, for the time being I guess, we must leave it.

 

http://woodape.org/reports/report/detail/429

What the heck, I'll add another, slightly more intriguing to me as it's in my home state and I've driven this road:

http://www.bfro.net/GDB/show_report.asp?id=25137

Edited by DWA
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For a creature reputed to be a master at avoiding detection, it sure does like to run in front of cars quite a bit. Weird that we have no confirmed accidents involving one. 

Edited by dmaker
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Guest Cricket

Thanks for all the replies!  I've been away at Mesa Verde for a couple days, and now catching up.  Forgive the mucked up quoting attempt here--I tried to do 3 quotes, but couldn't figure out how to do each in succession.  And I don't know how to remove the messed up quotes!

guyzonthropus, looking at analogs in other critters for insight is very reasonable. The ‘lever length’ of the foot is divided into the ‘power arm’ and the ‘load arm,’ and in order to determine those, you have to (again) know the internal morphology, most critically, where the landmark on the top of the talar trochlea is which divides the ‘power arm’ from the ‘load arm,’ and establishing, as you point out, just how forward the ankle actually is placed. And you also need to accurately determine the rear point of the calcaneus, as well as the heads of the metatarsals, as they mark the respective ends of the lever length. You idea isn’t way off, but alas, requires information that is unknown at this point.

MIB I agree with what you say about the limitations imposed by human limb proportions on quad movement. We’re just not built for it. If we’re talking about quadrupedalism for something like BF, however, we do have to consider just what kind of quadrupedalism is realistic given what people describe of BF (or may have possibly filmed): first and foremost what would have to be characterized as a habitual biped. Quadrupedalism can be arboreal or terrestrial, and can be of several kinds: digitigrade, palmigrade, fist-walking, and knuckle-walking. There are many morphological adaptations associated with each. The descriptions of BF and its behavior, however, will rule out some quad behaviors as unlikely. The reports of BF almost always describe something that has VERY broad shoulders (an adaptation associated with suspensory behavior), so that would have to impose constraints on what kind of terrestrial quad behavior could be involved, and would also impact numerous aspects of the forelimbs and hands. As for the knees, what the P-G film seems to show is a bipedalism where the knee doesn’t fully extend. It’s hard to say what would be going on internally with that, and whether such a knee would be more or less varus or valgus—an important consideration in quad verus bipedal locomotion. And what would be going on in the ankle? And who knows what kind of pelvis a BF would have, but the pelvis of a habitual biped is different from that of quadrupeds, which I’m sure you already know, and would also impose limitations on quadrupedalism.  But it is interesting to ponder, all the same.

DWA, Thanks for responding. And I will read the reports you provided, I appreciate it, and I will get back to this after I do. I enjoy discussing these issues with anyone who is interested in the subject, so if you think of something more, please post.

dmaker, I'm not sure I'd want to find that scenario!

 

 

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Guest Cricket
On 5/30/2017 at 9:17 AM, DWA said:

 Of the reports I have read describing quadrupedal locomotion, this is probably the most detailed, but I've read many.  There, for the time being I guess, we must leave it.

 

http://woodape.org/reports/report/detail/429

What the heck, I'll add another, slightly more intriguing to me as it's in my home state and I've driven this road:

http://www.bfro.net/GDB/show_report.asp?id=25137

 

DWA, I read these two reports.  The first reiterates what many others have described in their sightings.  The second one, however, was a bit confusing.  The witness describes something that was "hunched forward almost on 4 legs" but "definitely not a quadruped."  The individual transcribing the witness's report, however, seems to have reinterpreted it (for an unknown reason) to say that it had a "primate like run" "using knuckles like a gorilla or chimp would run."  Here's a link to a very good video of a group of gorillas knuckle walking, seen from a couple aspects.  Note the extension of the legs during the gait, the orientation of the arms, including the elbow, as well as the hand position.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yb796sRnkm0

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That's why I said might be instead of is, as we obviously need more information in regards to the actual A&P of these beings, and certainly not all of it may be derived from prints and casts. Another concept was of them raising up onto the balls of their feet while moving in a quadrupedal manner granting an altered leverage system.

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12 hours ago, Cricket said:

 

DWA, I read these two reports.  The first reiterates what many others have described in their sightings.  The second one, however, was a bit confusing.  The witness describes something that was "hunched forward almost on 4 legs" but "definitely not a quadruped."  The individual transcribing the witness's report, however, seems to have reinterpreted it (for an unknown reason) to say that it had a "primate like run" "using knuckles like a gorilla or chimp would run."  Here's a link to a very good video of a group of gorillas knuckle walking, seen from a couple aspects.  Note the extension of the legs during the gait, the orientation of the arms, including the elbow, as well as the hand position.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yb796sRnkm0

My rule with regard to interpreting reports is:  I wasn't there, either for the incident or the follow-up, so can't comment.  What's there is what's there.  The primate-like run could have been supplied by the witness rather than by the interviewer; the "definitely not a quadruped" very likely got elaborated for the interviewer, who condensed his idea of the meaning as we see.

 

(And I won't tell you how many times I've practically screamed at the screen WHY DIDN'T YOU ASK [X]...????? And usually, Y, Z, A, B... There are numerous good reasons to do followup - most people aren't Shakespeare; they don't know what might be important to research; they aren't sure on original filing that the request is legitimate (all of which I've seen), etc.) - but that doesn't mean it's always done well.

 

I further believe that, when a lot of people are describing something, I'd be more interested in finding out why than interpreting events I didn't witness.  And there are lots of reports of quadrupedal locomotion, of which these are simply two of the more interesting, to me.  And there, as I say, we must leave it. For now, anyway.

 

I'll take a look at the video, but it already seems to me - from P/G, at least, which I am pretty sure isn't a human and, being shot in 1967 pre CGI, could be pretty much only one other thing, and that thing with considerably longer "hind" legs, and a different foot, than a gorilla - that we are talking about an animal that approaches this somewhat differently from the way a gorilla does.

 

Unless, of course, Patty is only one undescribed species of NA hominid, which I don't see any reason to think impossible.

Supporting my speculation on the MD report:  "The animal moved across the road in a primate-like run. The witness felt it was using its knuckles like a gorilla or chimpanzee would run."

 

It sounds as if "primate-like run" came from the witness's "NOT a quadruped" assertion, likely written that way for brevity's sake, likely meaning that it didn't look to him as if the animal habitually and always moved on four legs, as, say, a deer does.

Edited by DWA
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[Starting with "Supporting..." you read a separate comment that got merged with my original.]

 

I'm presuming that the interviewer's "The witness felt..." means that the impression came from the witness and wasn't read in by the interviewer.

Edited by DWA
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20 hours ago, Cricket said:

 

Here's a link to a very good video of a group of gorillas knuckle walking, seen from a couple aspects.  Note the extension of the legs during the gait, the orientation of the arms, including the elbow, as well as the hand position.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yb796sRnkm0

Looking at this, I am not too sure that, say, Patty, having longer arms proportionally than one of us, couldn't run quadrupedally with a more pronounced verision of what's called the "compliant gait," a greater exaggeration of the bent-knee stride.  The mid-tarsal break theorized to exist in the sasquatch foot would make it, I'd think, much more amenable to quadrupedal movement than ours, which generally seems to act as a lever making the act more difficult for us, one reason probably that we so often just wind up on our knees to do it.

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On ‎5‎/‎27‎/‎2017 at 0:46 AM, Cricket said:

It sounds to me like the descriptions of the Bigfoot foot is the worst of all locomotor worlds.  It lacks the double arch system and the close packing of the calcaneocuboid joint of the human foot on the one hand, and while it is reported to have a mid-tarsal break (an adaptation for prehension in arboreal activity), it lacks an opposable hallux for arboreal grasping.  I just don't see how a foot like that would be able to withstand the stresses of running or sprinting as claimed in some reports (or be of much use arboreally other than standing above large branches).  If Bigfoot is an obligate biped, then that would have to impact efficiency in other modes of locomotion.  As others have noted, there are other morphological adaptations to obligate bipedalism in addition to those of the foot that would compromise quadrupedalism.  It seems to be all over the road in terms of reported capabilities, yet it is difficult to reconcile that with the reported foot features. 

Not wanting to get in over my technical head on this, had you read these articles?

 

http://woodape.org/index.php/about-bigfoot/articles/91-anatomy-of-the-sasquatch-foot

 

http://woodape.org/index.php/about-bigfoot/articles/90-anatomy-and-dermatoglyphics-of-three-sasquatch-footprints

 

I think that the problem is the dissonance created by reports of quadrupedal locomotion, without much more than the most rudimentary speculation about what the sasquatch foot would be like, unsupported of course with a specimen, and the presumption, bolstered by the Patterson film and the vast majority of encounter reports, that the sasquatch is an obligate biped.  I think that this is like the question of various subspecies or even species:  the prominent proponents don't seem to discuss it much if at all.  I'd really have to comb over these again; I'm also going to read Meldrum's chapter on the sasquatch foot and refresh my memory. 

 

Now, this sentence from the second article is interesting:  "Given that the Sasquatch may weigh twice as much as the gorilla, and is entirely bipedal, it is reasonable to expect the same sole structure, but to an exaggerated degree." (my emphasis)  Just as Bindernagel was surprised when I told him about a lot of reports featuring a human-like nose, Krantz apparently had seen no reports of quadrupedal activity.  That might actually lend a certain bias to his thinking; of course not having a specimen to study, we can say little to nothing about supplementary adaptations facilitating quadrupedal movement.  Let me just say that I'd love to see Frame 352 of the Patterson film suddenly drop to the ground and start knuckle-walking.  I have a feeling that at least something about the movement would surprise me, although I don't remember anyone describing quadrupedal movement note a particular thing I found extraordinary.  (More than one witness has remarked on the mid-tarsal break.)

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54 minutes ago, DWA said:

Now, this sentence from the second article is interesting:  "Given that the Sasquatch may weigh twice as much as the gorilla, and is entirely bipedal, it is reasonable to expect the same sole structure, but to an exaggerated degree." (my emphasis)  Just as Bindernagel was surprised when I told him about a lot of reports featuring a human-like nose, Krantz apparently had seen no reports of quadrupedal activity.

 

You are the one that first introduced Bindernagel to the idea of BF having a humane-like nose?  

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Guest Cricket

DWA, thanks for the links, and I read them both.  I had not seen them before.  I think the first article is a good discussion of the mechanics that might be involved.  The double ball situation is puzzling/interesting, as is the pathological print.  It looks like a condition that would be chronically painful.  I once dropped a small but heavy glass vase on my bare foot and dislocated the cuboid.  I couldn't put ANY weight on my foot because the pain when doing so was horrible.  After a couple hours of being crippled I tried carefully pushing it back in place and it worked.  The pain subsided immediately.  So I see that cripple print and I wince.  But then again, my foot has an arch, and a flat foot might not be as seriously compromised by some kind of distortion or dislocation.  I recalled an interesting quote that everyone, skeptics to proponents might ponder:  "When enough pieces have been fitted together, they may define either a whole or a hole.  Both are valuable.  The whole is a new structure that makes sense of the available data.  But the hole--what is not there--is also useful because it is a valuable clue to the shape of our ignorance.  Having defined the shape, we can now look for specific pieces to fill the hole...The biggest problem posed by our ignorance of nothingness is how to determine when a pattern is absent because it doesn't exist and when it is present but can't be perceived."  (Root Bernstein & Root-Berstein, 1999:106-107).

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Good quote.  I really like it.  Saving that one.  Might put it in my signature at some point.

 

We are presented here with a hole:  the gap between the things we know, or more accurately have inferred, about the sasquatch foot and locomotion based on evidence on the one hand, and the reports of eyewitnesses on the other. 

 

I am not sure I have read a report of quadrupedal activity for which the encounter predates the Patterson film.  But I'd place a more-than-lunch side bet that I haven't. Which is really interesting because of the reminder it provides to bigfooter and skeptic alike:  most people - including most eyewitnesses - have not seen the Patterson film.  (I first saw it in 2003, after having perused stills since 1968.)  I'd consider it unlikely in the extreme for a person to report that animal knuckle-walking or running on all fours.  Krantz sure didn't see it. But clearly, numerous people have seen it.  (Count on it:  reports of something like this are the tip of the iceberg of actual encounters.)

 

Hence, the hole.  I'd like to see the hole filled, because there is no reason to think the eyewitnesses didn't see what they say they saw, and known higher primates do it.

11 hours ago, Twist said:

 

You are the one that first introduced Bindernagel to the idea of BF having a humane-like nose?  

He sure sounded surprised when I told him (2009 TX Bigfoot Conference, can't remember whether it was our birding walk or when I was chauffeuring him and Mionczynski around Tyler)

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