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Are bears to blame for sightings of the Yeti?


Posted on Wednesday, 29 November, 2017 | Comment icon 46 comments

Does the Yeti roam the Himalayan wilds ? Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Jaikumar2000
A new study has determined that relics from the creature are actually the remains of three bear species.
Believed to reside in the remote mountains and forests of Tibet, Bhutan and Nepal, the Yeti has long remained a spiritual and cultural staple for the people who live in the vicinity of the Himalayas.

Sometimes referred to as the Abominable Snowman, this elusive ape-like hominid became a major part of Western popular culture after climbers reported finding trails of large footprints in the snow during expeditions to climb some of the most treacherous and remote mountains on Earth.

But is there really an undiscovered species of giant ape roaming the Himalayan wilds ?

Charlotte Lindqvist, associate professor at the University of Buffalo College of Arts and Sciences, recently led an effort to study an assortment of alleged Yeti artefacts including teeth, hair samples, fecal samples and bones.

By reconstructing the complete mitochondrial genomes of each specimen, her team determined that they were all from types of bears - the Asian black, the Tibetan brown and the Himalayan brown.

"Our findings strongly suggest that the biological underpinnings of the Yeti legend can be found in local bears," said Lindqvist.

The team's research however doesn't entirely disprove the existence of the creature.

"Scientific work can help explore myths such as the Yeti," she said. "Even if there is no proof for the existence of cryptids, it is impossible to completely rule out that they live."

Source: The Guardian | Comments (46)

Tags: Yeti

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #37 Posted by Area201 on 27 December, 2017, 6:00
I like your profile pic but arrows on mobile are totally off. If you want I can fix that for you, pm me.  One can start out with "belief" but eventually that belief or hypothesis has to be supported and turned into theory or faith by validating evidence, or if lacking dropped.  Usually people have a perspective changing personal experience that creates faith from the original belief. I dropped belief in a yeti after researching and found no evidence, in this physical dimension at least. 
Comment icon #38 Posted by DirtyDocMartens on 27 December, 2017, 6:33
I thought that the only artifacts we have of the Denisovans are some teeth and a finger bone. If so, I'm not sure how much of their morphology is known, and whether it's enough to make comparisons with any hominids. This is way out of my area of expertise, though. Thoughts?
Comment icon #39 Posted by oldrover on 27 December, 2017, 12:31
I'd guess that as the Denisovans were very closely related to us they wouldn't look very much like the variety of deions of the yeti.
Comment icon #40 Posted by Sakari on 27 December, 2017, 12:46
Thanks,but no thanks on the pic. Not on here much anymore.  
Comment icon #41 Posted by Carnoferox on 27 December, 2017, 14:02
Genomic evidence indicates that they are closely related to both Homo sapiens and Homo neanderthalensis, meaning that their morphology would not have differed from either species all that much. Certainly not enough to appear like how a yeti is typically described.
Comment icon #42 Posted by Myles on 27 December, 2017, 14:34
I think the time devoted to the belief plays a big factor too.   If someone believes in bigfoot for no real good reason, but still devotes allot of time reading and studying it, they will believe in a much stronger way.
Comment icon #43 Posted by Sir Wearer of Hats on 28 December, 2017, 3:25
Speak for yourself, I happen to be an aspidastra that has gained sentience and purchased an Internet connection.
Comment icon #44 Posted by DieChecker on 28 December, 2017, 10:32
I'd tend to agree that the Nepalese don't completely believe the Yeti to be a spiritual being. They do believe it is a supernatural being though.  This couldn't have been influenced much by Bigfoot, because bigfoot wasn't a "thing" of pop culture until the 1970s, whereas the Yeti came into pop culture in the 1950s with Hillary. However the locals had been telling British explorers of a man-bear back into the 1920s. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeti Also, earlier explorers doubted the locals, who insisted that it was a bipedal ape like creature.  
Comment icon #45 Posted by Merc14 on 28 December, 2017, 15:28
Interesting that they have so much physical evidence, relatively speaking, to analyze yet people hunting the far more accessible Bigfoot running around North America can't come up with much of anything more than some hair both fake and real, albeit from common animals.  No teeth, no bones, no skin etc. yet they have managed to find all these things in the far reaches of the Himalayas.   Something to bring up the next time a footer leads you down the "You never see a dead bear in the woods." logic trail.  
Comment icon #46 Posted by stereologist on 28 December, 2017, 17:32
The funny part of the never seen a dead bear in the woods comment is that I have. But if people don't believe you it is not hard to find news articles about bear feet being found and shown to the police because people thing it might be a human hand. https://www.yorkregion.com/news-story/6763426-bear-paw-temporarily-mistaken-for-human-hand/  


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