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Are Other Hominins (Hominoids) Alive Today?


Guest BFSleuth
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Guest MikeG

I can't see why it is unlikely that Hss killed our relatives...........after all, we have always killed our own species in great numbers, and still do.

Mike

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There are probably no pure florensis or denisovans still around. There are groups of people that have a larger % of denisovan DNA than others. In fact, I believe one of the populations that has the highest % of Denisovan DNA is a Pacific island population.

So, no, I don't believe that there are any actual examples of a florensis or denisovan population, that managed to avoid contact with modern humans, and kept it's DNA pure. Once the modern humans started engulfing that area of the world, their DNA would become so watered down, that it would not be possible to tell them from modern humans, except by studying DNA and determining which modern humans still retained some of the original Denisovan DNA.

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Thx Drew.

The sort of same thing that is happening to the current Hss species between races then. I'm curious, any idea how long we, as races, have lived alongside each other?

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This isn't one of those arguments where you say that there have been no observations because you are throwing out all the observations noted in the BFRO database, Green's database, etc. etc. is it?

No. Why are folks getting hung up on the word "observations?" Clearly many people claim to have observed bigfoots.

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Guest BFSleuth

I'd qualify that though. It not just that bigfoot hasn't been observed (i.e., collected and scientifically described), it's that it hasn't been observed despite centuries of exploration and settlement in the places where it's alleged to live. It hasn't been observed despite at least 50 years of notable scientists and skilled amateurs devoting significant effort to finding it. There is no other example in nature of something like this.

No. Why are folks getting hung up on the word "observations?" Clearly many people claim to have observed bigfoots.

I'm not hung up about the word "observations", I was simply referencing your first quote. Would you rather use a different word? I would be okay with that, just suggest the word you would rather use.

I think the point I'm trying to make is that trying to say that after 50 years of effort there is no .... (evidence? observations? [insert favorite word here]) ... is disingenuous because as you have noted there have been plenty of [insert favorite word] over the last 50 years. Based on this [insert favorite word], it would follow that there is the possibility of the existence of said creature and therefore worthy of continued effort to gather additional [insert favorite word] to find and classify said creature.

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Sas - If I'm not too prying, could you describe the nature of your field work? Activities, time of day, duration, etc?

I'm a wildlife ecologist with most of my work involving surveys for birds. Depending on the project and the species involved, I might be out pre-dawn, mid-morning, or late at night. I actually do owl surveys rather frequently (monthly?) As I morph into more and more senior-level office work (sadly), it's my grad students who are doing most of my field work for me, so they're in the field doing this kind of work, full-time, usually for a field season of about 3 month's duration. I probably get something like 4 or 5 good days in the field each month.

Important - the focus should not be on me. The point I'm trying to make is that my grad students and I are fairly typical of wildlife ecologists and the work we do in North America. There are thousands of us, there have been thousands of us doing field work like this for decades.

@Sleuth: What could possibly be disingenuous about Saskeptic qualifying his statement that the important "observations" are the ones that lead to the scientific description of bigfoot?? This has been my mantra here for years.

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Guest BFSleuth

Sas, are there any forums for field researchers? I wonder whether they have had any [observations] of odd things happening that they wouldn't normally account for in the process of their research.

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Guest BlurryMonster

I can't see why it is unlikely that Hss killed our relatives...........after all, we have always killed our own species in great numbers, and still do.

Mike

How about it being unlikely because there's no evidence for it? Last I checked there haven't been any finds suggesting human beings conducted prehistoric genocide. That includes mass graves, human tool marks indicating kills of other hominins, bone piles, remains in human trash middens, etc. There just isn't anything to say it happened.

And by the way, humans haven't always killed each other "in great numbers," and we certainly weren't during the time others hominins were running around. Again, there's no evidence for it. Sure, there were probably some territorial disputes and murders, but warfare and genocide are fairly modern inventions.

Edited by BlurryMonster
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Thx Sas, pretty cool stuff. Would you say that your (or your students') research takes them into prime BF territory? Say for instance, do they go into remote areas, or are they doing their studies just off the beaten path?

The reason I ask, is if they aren't spending their time in the 'hot spots' so to speak in your area, they may not have been situated for an encounter.

For instance, in Lake Winnebago in the late 80's/early 90's there was a huge uproar of fishermen claiming the 'big' walleye were fished out of the lake, then slowly, they realized that the 'big' ones were congregating on the mud flats...an experienced fisherman of the lake would state something like 'all the big walleye are gone', only to be corrected b/c someone went into an area that wasn't regularly fished and found them.

Additionally, do you think ridicule would play a role if a researcher did indeed have an experience?

Many victims of abuse do not report it b/c of embarrassment, could professionals in various fields be experiencing something similar? (Is that a straw-man or some other logical err on my part?)

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Guest MikeG

Well, OK, BlurryMonster, I'll accept some of that..........

........but there certainly have been pre-historic skeletons discovered with spear, axe and arrow wounds.

Now you'll ask me for the evidence, and other than a deteriorating memory I'm not sure where to start.

Mike

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One of the key questions I am raising with this thread is how do we explain that the genus homo should have all species go extinct with the exception of homo sapiens sapiens? I know this has been attempted to be explained as humans (HSS) killing off all competitor species, or that the other species somehow thrived for hundreds or millions of years but suddenly became stupid or incapable of adapting, or that a natural disaster somehow killed all other species of the genus except HSS, but none of these theories seem to be adequate.

It could be that HSS lived in some kind of equilibrium with other homo species, but with the rapid advance in our technologies, cutting of forests, etc. that other species were driven back into pockets of surviving species. This would make more sense. I could also see the other species adapting to the new HSS environment by simply melting back into areas that we couldn't control, to forests and mountains. Their adaption of behavior could also include additional precautions vis a vis HSS, especially if they have the ability of language and can teach their young.

I don't have any difficulty in accepting that Homo sapiens eliminated most (if not all) of the competition because that's how we act today. If we had better technology than the rest then we could easily have reduced their numbers to inviability. Add to that the potential for diseases of Hss being spread farther than other hominid diseases because we were taking so much more territory than the other species who lacked our technology. According to my understanding of Homo sapiens tools compared with tools found among other fossil humans, we did have the better tech.

Modern historical events (oxymoron I know), when one human civilization found another, shows that diseases and technology can both eliminate large portions of populations easily. Of course most of the these "primitive" peoples are still around somewhat today but they are still Homo sapiens and as a result are able to breed with each other, which often happens. With regard to the other species of human when our remoter ancestors arrived I believe interbreeding was very limited. I suspect that Homo sapiens may have evolved to NOT interbreed with other populations of genus Homo. Part of this may be our attitude of conquest and our difficulties with racism. Modernly we have been improving and maturing but who knew any better back in those days. When we destroyed their populations and out-competed them in hunting, fishing, gathering etc they had a much harder time of regaining their previous population levels. If we eliminated enough of them these population may have begun to experience inbreeding and the possible effects of infertile hybrids being engendered among raped females of the survivors (another tactic often perpetrated by modern human societies to demoralize and disrupt the paternities of future generations). If as, I suspect, hybrids were largely infertile then these hybrid offspring would have reduced the fitness of their populations. Fewer children would be born to them and their populations would generally reduce, increasing inbreeding effects.

As Homo sapien populations spread and grew more dense they would have surrounded and isolated any fugitive populations that had similar environmental requirements. Eventually these isolated pockets would be found and then either eliminated violently or subsumed through intermarriage. Homo sapiens would be less susceptible to the hybridising effect of infertility. While hybrids would still be infertile, most of the sapiens population would have been intact and fully capable of carrying on the species while a few of the infertile may have been able to contribute to the gene-pool (as evidenced by the DNA). Most of the breeding adults of the victimized species would have been eliminated remember but not the sapiens breeders.

How about it being unlikely because there's no evidence for it? Last I checked there haven't been any finds suggesting human beings conducted prehistoric genocide. That includes mass graves, human tool marks indicating kills of other hominins, bone piles, remains in human trash middens, etc. There just isn't anything to say it happened.

And by the way, humans haven't always killed each other "in great numbers," and we certainly weren't during the time others hominins were running around. Again, there's no evidence for it. Sure, there were probably some territorial disputes and murders, but warfare and genocide are fairly modern inventions.

There is also competition for resources. A larger population of Homo sapiens reaping all of the good food and shelters takes them away from other populations in the area. Again something that we still do today albeit in much greater capability.

Also "great numbers" today means something very different compared with population sizes back then.

Edited by antfoot
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I wonder whether they have had any [observations] of odd things happening that they wouldn't normally account for in the process of their research.

I have, and I've described it in full right here at the BFF. But so what? The fact that I'm a biologist who experienced something weird in the field one night does not "bigfoot" make. Even if I had a close encounter in which I was 100% sure that I was looking at a bigfoot, I would just be one other person claiming an encounter. Nothing changes until someone collects physical evidence that can be used to describe bigfoot as a new species.

So that's the same with any other extant hominins. We might find evidence that other humans shared this earth with us until 10,000 years ago, 5,000 years ago - who knows? But other than anecdotes, we don't have evidence to confirm that any of them are with us still.

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Guest BFSleuth

Yes, I did read your report about your experience and it was interesting. Have any of your students also had out of normal observations? If so, how would they report something like that? It seems that when conducting field study you would tend to want to focus on data collection and try to avoid being distracted. However, would field observers have a forum or other area where they might share similar "weird" events? It might be another opportunity to data mine for unreported BF observations, similar to the thread started regarding hunting or fishing forums.

I agree that until we have physical evidence that is confirmed all we have is a set of observations. Hopefully with Dr. Ketchum's upcoming report we can start that process, depending on the extent and veracity of the report. If we then have a set of observations and DNA analysis of physical evidence that can be tied to photograph evidence of the capture of the physical evidence or trackways approaching and departing hair traps, etc. then we will be started along the path of confirming the species.

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Would you say that your (or your students') research takes them into prime BF territory? Say for instance, do they go into remote areas, or are they doing their studies just off the beaten path?

Depends on the project. I do some grassland work so sometimes we're in wide open pastures that aren't very squatchy. Other times we're in the heart of bigfoot central. I had one student a few years back intentionally seeking out the deepest, darkest, wildest forests he could. In one county where he did a lot of that field work there are more than 10 BFRO accounts. So it looks awful squatchy there, it's a place where other people have reported bigfoot encounters multiple times, and my student (and his field assistants; 4 in total) spent 2 spring/summer field seasons working full-time there. We published a couple of papers on the birds they found there, but no squatches were documented.

The BFRO geodatabase is good for providing perspective on where bigfoots are supposed to be. We can cross check that with where biologists (or any other group that works in the field) are or have been active. For example, it doesn't get much squatchier than Yakima County, WA - with its 21 reports. That's 21 accounts from within ONE COUNTY. You can learn more about Yakima County here: the population is over 225,000 in just under 4300 square miles (with over 71,000 in the city of Yakima). Yakima County leads the nation in certain orchard crops like apples and pears, and it is Washington's leading dairy producer.

Most of the squatchy action is, I assume, in western Yakima County. There is BLM land, National Forest land, and, of course, Mt. Rainier National Park. So sure, there's lots of "wilderness" there, and there is definitely some rugged terrain, but it's also federal land. It's been surveyed 9 ways to Sunday by the Feds -who are mandated to conduct inventory and monitoring. Then you've got two major research universities in the state, and a few dozen smaller colleges scattered around and within striking distance of all that squatchiness. There are definitely multiple "Saskeptics" working at colleges and universities in Washington, with grad students doing field work every day in squatch-central. So far, none of them have hauled in a bigfoot, nor have any of them even managed a decent photo on their phone.

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Guest BFSleuth

Sas, to your knowledge are there any "official" field research operations looking for BF that are backed with grants? Also, with existing field researchers do they log all activity or only the focus research? In other words, if you are studying the Spotted Owl and come across evidence of wolves for example, does the field researcher make a note of it in the journal and if so how would one access that data?

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