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Are Other Hominins (Hominoids) Alive Today?


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Guest BFSleuth

For those of you who haven't found it yet, Dr. Meldrum has started a web site: The Relict Hominoid Inquiry (http://www.isu.edu/rhi/). His latest paper, Are Other Hominins (Hominoids) Alive Today? (http://www.isu.edu/rhi/pdf/Are%20Other.pdf) responds to David Robson's article, Puzzles of evolution: Are other hominins alive today?

In particular he takes exception to Robson's dismissal of bigfoot evidence based on an assumption of misidentification to invalidate the use of ecological niche modeling (ENM), which had shown "remarkable overlap with distributions resulting from analysis of coordinate data for black bear".

Meldrum goes on to note the recent discoveries of Denisovans, Homo floresiensis (with a "possible parallel with the orang pendek), the recent discovery of the Red Deer Cave people, the Salkhit skull cap, and the Lishu skull. All these are hominoids that dated from 10,000 to 30,000 years ago, meaning homo sapiens sapiens lived concurrent with these species for most of our history.

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The common idea that of all of the genus homo only we (homo sapiens sapiens) could have survived seems to have a fundamental error in logic. We like to pride ourselves with the fact that we are the most intelligent and advanced life form on the earth, yet for some reason we sprang from a genus that was an entire failure. The rest of our brethren died out. The idea that we killed them all, or that they were all too stupid to move away from slow moving glacial advance, or that we alone were strong enough and capable enough to survive natural catastrophe seems on the face of it preposterous.

With the advance in understanding of our evolutionary heritage, such as our interbreeding with Neanderthals and Denisovans, and the discoveries of so many new species of our brethren that had survived to as recently as 10,000 years ago it begs the question whether there still exists other species within the genus homo. We are on the cusp of a potential paradigm shift in our understanding of our heritage, especially with the use of DNA sequencing.

These discoveries, all within the last 10 years, have laid the groundwork for the scientific community to receive a paper from Dr. Ketchum et al with an open mind. Note the comment in Meldrum's article noting the reaction to Curnoe's discovery of the Red Deer Cave people: "had the remains been found to be 300,000 years old the reactions might have been quite different. It was the young age that was such a surprise." It is time for the scientific community to get over the surprise and to shed the notion that only homo sapiens sapiens could be the sole survivor of the entire genus.

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BobZenor

It is a profound thought that there might be an unknown hominoid alive today. It would be more profound for there to be an unknown hominin. For it to be Homo even more so. We got apes and they are cool but another hominin would be dramatically more interesting. To find out a population of hominins was alive would rock the world. Even I find it hard to believe and I am pretty well convinced I had an encounter with one.

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If they are, then how could they remain 'below the radar' so to speak. My thoughts as always is that it might not be that hard for an intelligent being that could anticipate the thoughts of us modern humans enough to elude our clumsy excursions into wild areas to do exactly that. cheers

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Guest BFSleuth

If you think about other genus's, such as canines or felines or bears, or look at apes and monkeys, all of them have wide distribution with great diversity. It boggles the mind to think that somehow among the animal kingdom the genus homo, with high intelligence and opposable thumbs, would be the least diversified animal group with only one surviving species.

Bayanov, in Historical Evidence for the Existence of Relect Hominoids (http://bigfootforums.com/index.php?/topic/29570-historical-evidence-for-the-existence-of-relect-hominoids/), notes that throughout history there are references to wild hairy men of a variety of shapes and sizes around the world. A common theme among them is their dwelling in remote areas such as mountains or bogs or deep forest, places that are difficult and fearful for men to go.

Try an experiment next time you go hiking on a commonly used trail. Get off the trail about 20' to 50' away and stand there, then see how many people see you or notice you as they walk by. You don't have to even use camo or try to hide behind a tree, almost always people will pass you by without noticing.

It isn't that hard to hide from humans, especially when they aren't looking for you. Our perceptions of the world are shaped by what we are actively looking to see, and most people aren't looking for wild hairy men. It isn't in our modern perceptual vocabulary. When we are in the woods today most people aren't looking for fairies or goblins, the folk tales have died in terms of their realism, so folks aren't looking for the hairy men in the woods. We walk right by them without seeing.

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salubrious
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Try an experiment next time you go hiking on a commonly used trail. Get off the trail about 20' to 50' away and stand there, then see how many people see you or notice you as they walk by. You don't have to even use camo or try to hide behind a tree, almost always people will pass you by without noticing.

It isn't that hard to hide from humans, especially when they aren't looking for you. Our perceptions of the world are shaped by what we are actively looking to see, and most people aren't looking for wild hairy men. It isn't in our modern perceptual vocabulary. When we are in the woods today most people aren't looking for fairies or goblins, the folk tales have died in terms of their realism, so folks aren't looking for the hairy men in the woods. We walk right by them without seeing.

Tom Brown Jr of the Tracker School says that humans are the easiest of all animals to sneak up on. They make the most noise in the forest and are also the least aware. Its something of a miracle that people see animals in the forest as a result. With most animals we have no idea that they are even there, even if we pass within a few feet.

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Guest BFSleuth

Great point, salubrious. Ever since I was a boy going into the woods I hated to go with anyone else, because it seems like they were just incapable of moving silently. The average human might as well carry a boom box and disco ball when they go into the woods. Just watch some the videos of various BF researchers in the woods, breaking sticks, crunching leaves, and yakking away. I'm not surprised that they are unable to find BF.

Here is a very interesting documentary about the work of Joe Hutto, imprinting wild turkeys:

http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/my-life-as-a-turkey/full-episode/7378/

Note that he is a naturalist, living in the woods and walking the woods every day. However, when he started going into the woods with his brood of turkeys he started to notice a lot more wildlife than before he had the brood. After they left he saw a decline in the number of wildlife sightings. This is a person that would be looking for wildlife, yet he found that being with animals made a big difference in his perception in the woods.

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Guest MikeG
Try an experiment next time you go hiking on a commonly used trail. Get off the trail about 20' to 50' away and stand there, then see how many people see you or notice you as they walk by. You don't have to even use camo or try to hide behind a tree, almost always people will pass you by without noticing.

Hey, you don't even have to try that hard.

My daughter has just finished an observational exercise involving birds at feeding stations........noting whether they preferred to feed singly or in a group. This involved about 4 hours of observation every day for a fortnight, with her sitting in the woods about 12 to 15 feet off a path. The thing is, she wore a bright red coat, and sat in full view of a well-walked footpath.

In the end, she became so intrigued by how few people saw her that she kept a separate tick-sheet to to record how many humans appeared to see her. It was around 3%!!! Her best friend walked past her without seeing her, 5 or 6 times. We're talking less than the length of the room you are sitting in now, and not obscured by undergrowth or trees.....and a sample size of many hundreds of mainly fit active 20 to 25 year olds (it's in a university town, on a route between two parts of the uni).

-

I've told the story a number of times about being within 5 or 10 yards of a big adult elephant, in not particularly dense bush, and the passengers in my vehicle didn't see it until it moved. We're useless in the bush.....useless!!

Mike

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Guest BFSleuth

MikeG, that is a most interesting account of your daughter's side research. Only 3% of people walking by noticed her? Wow!

Yeah, I think that arrogance does play a part in how our perceptions are shaped. When folks say something like, "Well, humans have been everywhere on this continent so how could BF hide?", it really gives me a chuckle. Just because you passed through an area doesn't mean you actually saw very much, yet folks assume they must have seen everything because they looked!

Galen Rowell published a book, whose title is borrowed from the words of a Sherpa: "Many people come, looking, looking, taking picture... no good ... some people come, see. Good!" Toward the end of my climbing career I gave up fiddling with cameras all the time and just enjoying the moment and place, it was much more enjoyable and I definitely saw a lot more. Maybe this is why folks with cameras have such a difficult time seeing BF. Just a thought.

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bipedalist
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"Meldrum finds it easy to imagine that small groups of our cousins could be clinging on in remote areas…â€

I like this Meldrum quote of a quote.....

Personally, ever since Floresiensis I've held out similar hope....

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indiefoot

If I think in terms of a human with good camo and great athletic skills, born and raised in the forest by parents with generations of experience, I have less of a hard time with their being as stealthy as they seem to be. We are comparing them to ourselves and our skills and there is no comparison to be made. We are totally outclassed.

I think we seldom see them unless for some odd reason they want us to see them. I don't understand why they run in front of cars, or run along beside them. Rowdy teenagers?

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