To the joy of cryptozoologists around the world, a University of Oxford scientist has made an stunning discovery that seems to have solved the mystery of the elusive Yeti (Abominable Snowman) creature. Geneticist and Oxford professor Bryan Sykes found a genetic match between an ancient polar bear and two separate samples taken from reported Yetis – suggesting the creature known as the Yeti is alive and living in the Himalayas. His announcement stunned the typically skeptical scientific world:
“We have found an exact genetic match between two yeti samples from the Himalayas and the ancient polar bear.”
Sykes made a global appeal last year for samples from suspected Yeti (cryptid) sightings. Those who submitted samples to the project were asked to give a description of the material and details of where and when it was found, as well as their own opinion of its likely species type and the reasons for that view. 70 samples were received of which 27 yielded good DNA results.
Sykes then conducted the most advanced DNA tests available on the two most promising samples – hairs from two unidentified Yeti creatures, one found in the western Himalayan region of Ladakh in northern India, and the other from Bhutan, located 800 miles to the east. The Yeti DNA results were compared against the GenBank database of all published DNA sequences including a sample from an ancient polar bear jawbone dating back 40,000 to 120,000 years ago that was previously discovered in Svalbard, Norway.
Sykes found a 100% match against the mummified polar bear sample.
The two Yeti samples were obtained in two separate sightings. The Ladakh Yeti sample was taken from the remains of a creature shot by an experienced (and frightened) bear hunter around 40 years ago (a brownish color hair was tested). The Bhutan Yeti hair, also brownish in color, was found in a bamboo forest by a Yeti expedition conducted in the early 2000’s.
According to the Telegraph:
“Professor Sykes believes that the animals are hybrids – crosses between polar bears and brown bears. Because the newly identified samples are from creatures which are recently alive, he thinks the hybrids are still living in the Himalayas.”
According to Professor Sykes:
“This is a species that hasn’t been recorded for 40,000 years. Now, we know one of these was walking around ten years ago. And what’s interesting is that we have found this type of animal at both ends of the Himalayas. If one were to go back, there would be others still there.”
Reports of Yeti, which potentially could be related to the North American Bigfoot (Sasquatch) and the Russian (Caucasus mountains) “almasty” creatures, date back centuries including a photograph of a Yeti footprint taken by British climber Eric Shipton at the base of Mount Everest in 1951. Sykes commented on cryptologists and how his discovery may validate their research:
“Bigfootologists and other enthusiasts seem to think that they’ve been rejected by science. Science doesn’t accept or reject anything, all it does is examine the evidence and that is what I’m doing.”
Sykes’ findings have been submitted for publication in a peer-reviewed science journal and will be featured on a British documentary series, Bigfoot Files. The stunning discovery is expected to spark a new round of expeditions to search for the Yeti beast.
You can read more about Yeti and historic Abominable Snowman sightings here.