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Tags "Bigfoot Files" , bigfoot , Brian Sykes , yeti

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Old 17th October 2013, 09:31 AM   #41
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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2841953/

Complete mitochondrial genome of a Pleistocene jawbone unveils the origin of polar bear

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3437856/

Polar and brown bear genomes reveal ancient admixture and demographic footprints of past climate change
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2 prints, same midtarsal crock..., I mean break?
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Old 17th October 2013, 09:42 AM   #42
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
I am not assuming anything. I am reporting what Sykes is saying. But:

1: One of the samples was apparently from a "mummified" complete animal, shot 40 years ago by a local hunter. This is nothing to do with a single hair.

2: What track?

3: See 1/. And maybe take the trouble to read some of the links I posted, then I wouldn't have to be simply repeating what is on clear view for anyone to read.
1. I see part of the problem...any evidence?

2. Sorry, I had this confused with one of the other yeti hoaxes...

3. Does not respond to my #3, above, at all...
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Old 17th October 2013, 09:47 AM   #43
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Originally Posted by LTC8K6 View Post
And they 100% match a polar bear...
An "ancient" polar bear...wonder if that's why his hair was falling out...
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Old 17th October 2013, 09:47 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
Those thinking up all sorts of tenuous explanations for the amazing DNA result (fell out of a bag, hunter's jacket etc) will have to explain how two samples, one from from either end of the Himalayas, come to match each other, but match no extant species. That's going to be one convoluted story.
Aren't you the poster who is always criticizing other posters for pre-judging an argument or position until it is actually made? Did I get that right?
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:09 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
Aren't you the poster who is always criticizing other posters for pre-judging an argument or position until it is actually made? Did I get that right?
Probably. You're always right.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:13 AM   #46
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If it is a hybrid bear then it is not a Yeti.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:16 AM   #47
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
Come on, get real. There is no way a population of polar bears has made it thousands of miles across Asia, then climbed into the mountains.....and nobody noticed.
They went at night.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:41 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Spindrift View Post
They went at night.
And, of course, their mottled grizzly/polar bear coats made them much harder to see.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:46 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by Spindrift View Post
They went at night.
I suppose that Mowgli provided the torches.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:53 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by dafydd View Post
I suppose that Mowgli provided the torches.
Bioluminescence from half giant dragonfly/half nucular firefly hybrids.
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Old 17th October 2013, 10:58 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
-

Those thinking up all sorts of tenuous explanations for the amazing DNA result (fell out of a bag, hunter's jacket etc) will have to explain how two samples, one from from either end of the Himalayas, come to match each other, but match no extant species. That's going to be one convoluted story.
It seems very likely that the amazing DNA result could be because both samples are actually from the exact same animal. I'm not suggesting that there's not a second sample, just that human error being what it is there could have been some mix-up in storage, labeling, or otherwise handling the samples.

There is also the possibility of outright fraud. The "Documentary" label is applied equally to producers across the spectrum of credibility and honesty. The press release may be a complete misrepresentation of the results, as well. I'm honestly quite skeptical of all of it.
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Old 17th October 2013, 11:28 AM   #52
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Originally Posted by dafydd View Post
If it is a hybrid bear then it is not a Yeti.
Oops! doesn't BFF mean Bear Fans Forums?

Last edited by Castro; 17th October 2013 at 11:38 AM.
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Old 17th October 2013, 11:53 AM   #53
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Originally Posted by joesixpack View Post
It seems very likely that the amazing DNA result could be because both samples are actually from the exact same animal.
Bingo. Provenance really matters with something like this and, so far at least, we have nothing to go on other than what the media has written about it. The "we found this one hair in the bamboo forest" story is certainly suspect to me, and the vague details of the "mummified remains" sound pretty sketchy too. If the bear killed 40 years ago was so weird looking that the hunter kept it, why wasn't it ever shared with a biologist until, apparently, some yeti hunter came sniffing around after it?

Now if said yeti hunter had access to something weird - either because he intentionally cooked it up himself or he acquired it somewhere along the way - what's to keep him from providing two, apparently independent samples to "the scientist" to analyze? A man of science assumes all parties to be as honest as he is, so the scientist is quick to accept the explanation of the provenance as having come from independent sources and then is stunned by his result.

The only thing that still wouldn't make sense is the match to ancestral polar bear, but the 100% thing is also suspect as is the "hybrid" angle.

There's much more to learn here when and if a paper comes out on it, but joesixpack has identified that it's essential for the provenance of these samples to be confirmed before jumping to conclusions about an unidentified population of anything running around out there. Something really doesn't smell right about this.
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Old 17th October 2013, 11:54 AM   #54
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Quote:
Professor Sykes found a 100 per cent match with a sample from an ancient polar bear jawbone found in Svalbard, Norway.
Quote:
Sykes added "The fact that the hunter, who had great experience of bears, thought this one was in some way unusual and was frightened of it, makes me wonder if this species of bear might behave differently. Maybe it is more aggressive, more dangerous or is more bipedal than other bears."
Quote:
"There's more work to be done on interpreting the results. I don't think it means there are ancient polar bears wandering around the Himalayas. But we can speculate on what the possible explanation might be. It could mean there is a sub species of brown bear in the High Himalayas descended from the bear that was the ancestor of the polar bear. Or it could mean there has been more recent hybridisation between the brown bear and the descendant of the ancient polar bear."
But if there aren't "ancient" polar bears getting shot dead in the Himalayas then we shouldn't get the 100% DNA match with the ancient museum specimen, right? Wouldn't a 100% DNA match indicate a truly identical animal instead of simply a similar or descended animal?

If this bear is so significantly different than the brown and black bears of the region then why haven't we already seen bodies, films and pictures?

Sykes says that it could be:

The ancestor of polar bears, or
A hybrid of that ancestor and the brown bear.

That actually proposes two different bears which could even exist simultaneously. But we don't have anything for any of that.

Oh, and if the bear hunter was so experienced with bears why couldn't he describe this odd bear with any more specificity than "different"? Are there any quotes from the hunter himself or is everything coming second-hand through another person? See this is something that sounds hinky to me and may indicate an attempt to hoax.

There is still good reason to believe that people would be as enthusiastic and capable of hoaxing the Yeti as they would be for Bigfoot. The perpetrators of the hoaxes could even be Americans or Europeans and do not have to be locals. You may also be able to get some locals to do or say anything for money.
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Old 17th October 2013, 12:20 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by The Shrike View Post
Bingo. Provenance really matters with something like this and, so far at least, we have nothing to go on other than what the media has written about it.
Wouldn't provenance, chain of custody, etc, be addressed in the peer-review process?

Last edited by Resume; 17th October 2013 at 12:34 PM. Reason: spelling
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Old 17th October 2013, 12:44 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by William Parcher View Post
But if there aren't "ancient" polar bears getting shot dead in the Himalayas then we shouldn't get the 100% DNA match with the ancient museum specimen, right? Wouldn't a 100% DNA match indicate a truly identical animal instead of simply a similar or descended animal?...
My understanding is that we have only the mitochondrial genome of that ancient polar bear (via its jawbone), not the whole genome.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2841953/
A 100% mtDNA match could mean that our "yeti" is a descendant of this ancient polar bear (through the mothers ?) fwiw
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Old 17th October 2013, 12:48 PM   #57
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More bipedal?

But it's a 100% match...
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2 prints, same midtarsal crock..., I mean break?
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:10 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Castro View Post
My understanding is that we have only the mitochondrial genome of that ancient polar bear (via its jawbone), not the whole genome.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2841953/
A 100% mtDNA match could mean that our "yeti" is a descendant of this ancient polar bear (through the mothers ?) fwiw
Ahhh...so it's not a 100% match at all, really.

It's a match to the female line of descent?
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:14 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
Wouldn't provenance, chain of custody, etc, be addressed in the peer-review process?
No, and that's what's so disconcerting about stuff like this. The peer-referees are unlikely to be any more savvy to a hoax than Sykes. They're likely to focus like a laser on his methods with the DNA analysis, but unlikely to pull back and question the provenance of basic information used in the analysis unless they've specifically spent some time thinking critically about hoaxes.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:18 PM   #60
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Originally Posted by LTC8K6 View Post
Ahhh...so it's not a 100% match at all, really.

It's a match to the female line of descent?
This sounds fishy to me. I think the mitochondrial DNA will have drifted in 120,000 years. There shouldn't be a 100% match.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:25 PM   #61
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Quote:
See...we told you. There's a new species of bear running around out there. That means there could easily be a new large primate out there, too.
Or something like that...
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:27 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by The Shrike View Post
No, and that's what's so disconcerting about stuff like this. The peer-referees are unlikely to be any more savvy to a hoax than Sykes. They're likely to focus like a laser on his methods with the DNA analysis, but unlikely to pull back and question the provenance of basic information used in the analysis unless they've specifically spent some time thinking critically about hoaxes.
You'd think the single hair in a bamboo forest would raise an eyebrow...
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:27 PM   #63
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Originally Posted by LTC8K6 View Post
More bipedal?

But it's a 100% match...
It is not unprecedented. Reinhold Messner in "My Quest For The Yeti" page 156 (2000):
Quote:
...I did not believe yetis were relics of a prehistoric anthropoid species that had managed to survive undetected. The yeti was a living creature, not a figment of the imagination, that corresponded to the brown bear (Ursus arctus). After all, in an ancient Tibetan dialect, yeti translates as "snow bear". I hasten to add that this is an extraordinary animal - fearsome and preternaturally intelligent, as far as possible from the cuddly image people in the West have of bears.
These animals are nearly impossible to track, and for all their reality they remain deeply enigmatic. They avoid all contact with humans and are partly bipedal, nocturnal omnivores. Usually the males of the species, who roam from the group, are sighted...
I guess Sykes read this book or met Messner.

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Old 17th October 2013, 01:28 PM   #64
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This also seems like a giant buzzkill for the Yeti

Quote:
The team predicts that even in a bone at an ideal preservation temperature of −5 ºC, effectively every bond would be destroyed after a maximum of 6.8 million years. The DNA would cease to be readable much earlier — perhaps after roughly 1.5 million years, when the remaining strands would be too short to give meaningful information.
I can't imagine that after 120,000 years there could be anything approaching confidence in a "100% match"

ETA; I reread the article and some of this is all now a bit more in question for me. The "Ancient bear" sample seems to be "least 40,000 years ago, and probably as far back as 120,000 years". Even after 40,000 years it seems surprisingly unlikely that there could be a lot of confidence in the result.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:29 PM   #65
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Clearly, the giant bear was killed by a yeti, fed upon at site A, and then transported via a Hobo Bag, to the other location, where the leftovers were eaten.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:29 PM   #66
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
That may be so, but the great thing is that it seems to be an un-catalogued species of bear. Sod the yeti legend, we may have evidence here of a brand-new-to-science big mammal, which is brilliant news if confirmed.
That would be exciting, and real news of a scientific nature, not the pseudo-science of "Finding Figboot". Such a discovery, if confirmed, should put paid to the Yeti nonsense.

Its it unusual, but not unheard of for large mammals to be discovered relatively recently. A few of years back, a previously unknown (but suspected) species of big cat, was first seen in Borneo, and in 2010, the Caqueta monkey was discovered in Colombia.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:33 PM   #67
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Reading the stories again, they don't say that both hairs matched the ancient polar bear, just that when testing the 2 hairs, there was a match. So it could be that only one hair was some sort of match.
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:48 PM   #68
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Originally Posted by The Shrike View Post
No, and that's what's so disconcerting about stuff like this. The peer-referees are unlikely to be any more savvy to a hoax than Sykes. They're likely to focus like a laser on his methods with the DNA analysis, but unlikely to pull back and question the provenance of basic information used in the analysis unless they've specifically spent some time thinking critically about hoaxes.
This is an entirely innocent question. I don't know the answer.....but

......How is it possible to have a hair which is a good enough hoax to beat DNA analysis? You'd need to have a hair from an unknown creature, wouldn't you? And thus it isn't a hoax. Where have I gone wrong in this line of thought?
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Old 17th October 2013, 01:52 PM   #69
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Originally Posted by LTC8K6 View Post
Reading the stories again, they don't say that both hairs matched the ancient polar bear, just that when testing the 2 hairs, there was a match. So it could be that only one hair was some sort of match.
Yeah, it's confusing for me, but I think you are reading that right.

Regardless, I am suspicious of the DNA sample extracted from a single hair collected over ten years ago.

Quote:
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:01 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by The Shrike View Post
No, and that's what's so disconcerting about stuff like this. The peer-referees are unlikely to be any more savvy to a hoax than Sykes. They're likely to focus like a laser on his methods with the DNA analysis, but unlikely to pull back and question the provenance of basic information used in the analysis unless they've specifically spent some time thinking critically about hoaxes.
Goes right the way back to Randi's early days of trying to educate scientists that some folk do cheat, that evidence might be falsified.
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:02 PM   #71
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Are we sure it isn't just this thing?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Himalayan_brown_bear

I mean, has Sykes sequenced DNA from this bear to compare?
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:13 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
Are we sure it isn't just this thing?
Well Sykes talks as if he already knows it isn't the bear in your link. The bear in your link is the one he is speculating may have mated with the ancient polar bear to produce the bear that got killed by the hunter forty years ago. So Sykes has disqualified that bear as a candidate for what got shot.
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:13 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
Are we sure it isn't just this thing?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Himalayan_brown_bear

I mean, has Sykes sequenced DNA from this bear to compare?
Or maybe Phill Harris

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ogQ0uge06o
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:19 PM   #74
MikeG
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Originally Posted by The Shrike View Post
.....why wasn't it ever shared with a biologist until, apparently, some yeti hunter came sniffing around after it?....
I seriously doubt that most local hunters in the Himalayas has ever seen or even heard of a biologist. We're talking uneducated illiterate peasant folk here, with no means of communication outside the village, scraping a living in sheer poverty and in some of the harshest terrain on the planet. 40 years ago it was a 3 week walk from Everest to Kathmandu, and walking was absolutely the only option. Would you, in those circumstances, expect anyone to set off to walk for days or weeks carrying a bit of skin or whatever, left over from their last good meal?

BTW, I believe I have seen footage of the hair being retrieved from the forest. If it the one I am thinking of, a tracker led the party of scientists to a den in a hollow tree, and the hairs (there were lots) were collected from the top of the opening into the tree. I'll let you know if this is the correct incident after I have watched the programme on Sunday. If I have the right event, then there is absolutely no question of this being a single hair found out of context or handed over by some bod without a back-story.

However, I take your point about this all needing further illumination. The reporting in those papers isn't of the highest standard, and there is a confusing inter-mixing of the terms "hybrid", "sub-species" and "species". I hope the programme is more precise.
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:24 PM   #75
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I suspect it's a descendant of one of the Panserbjørn which Iorek Byrnison led to the Himalayas in Philip Pullman's The Amber Spyglass.
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Old 17th October 2013, 02:25 PM   #76
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Originally Posted by Resume View Post
Are we sure it isn't just this thing?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Himalayan_brown_bear
or this one:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tibetan_blue_bear

Quote:
I mean, has Sykes sequenced DNA from this bear to compare?
I hope so for him! seriously
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Old 17th October 2013, 06:28 PM   #77
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They are going with high sensationalism and crappy editing at The Christian Post...

Quote:
Yeti Bear Connection? Bigfoot Descended From Ancient Polar Bear, Scientist Says

The Yeti is descended from an ancient bear polar, according to a British geneticist, who said Thursday that he may have solved the mystery of the yeti through his latest research study.
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Old 17th October 2013, 06:51 PM   #78
The Shrike
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
This is an entirely innocent question. I don't know the answer.....but

......How is it possible to have a hair which is a good enough hoax to beat DNA analysis? You'd need to have a hair from an unknown creature, wouldn't you? And thus it isn't a hoax. Where have I gone wrong in this line of thought?
The hoax could be someone taking hair from the 40 year old hide and passing it off as a more recent find. Thus you've got the crucial match of the ostensibly two samples.

Now what the thing is that made Sykes think it was a match for an ancestral polar bear, I don't know. The 100% thing is completely fishy. It's possible that the original hide was from some seldom encountered bear, like the Himalayan subspecies of brown bear, and perhaps that thing is closest genetically to common ancestor of brown and polar bears.

As for hunters sharing stuff with biologists, you're first assuming that the story is accurate. I'm not convinced there ever was this "hunter". If there was though, we're talking about the 1970s, not the 1870s. This is a decade or so after the appearance of the yeti "scalp" and yeti "hand" that were international sensations drawing the attention of celebrities like Edmund Hillary, Marlin Perkins, and Jimmy Stewart. If some backwater yak herder had what he - or anyone he knew - thought could have been a yeti, or even just some new bear, the western world would've heard about before 2013.
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Old 17th October 2013, 07:17 PM   #79
LTC8K6
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
I seriously doubt that most local hunters in the Himalayas has ever seen or even heard of a biologist. We're talking uneducated illiterate peasant folk here, with no means of communication outside the village, scraping a living in sheer poverty and in some of the harshest terrain on the planet. 40 years ago it was a 3 week walk from Everest to Kathmandu, and walking was absolutely the only option. Would you, in those circumstances, expect anyone to set off to walk for days or weeks carrying a bit of skin or whatever, left over from their last good meal?

BTW, I believe I have seen footage of the hair being retrieved from the forest. If it the one I am thinking of, a tracker led the party of scientists to a den in a hollow tree, and the hairs (there were lots) were collected from the top of the opening into the tree. I'll let you know if this is the correct incident after I have watched the programme on Sunday. If I have the right event, then there is absolutely no question of this being a single hair found out of context or handed over by some bod without a back-story.

However, I take your point about this all needing further illumination. The reporting in those papers isn't of the highest standard, and there is a confusing inter-mixing of the terms "hybrid", "sub-species" and "species". I hope the programme is more precise.
Yeah, there's still too much noise and not enough signal with this report.

We also don't know about replication.
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Old 17th October 2013, 07:21 PM   #80
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Originally Posted by MikeG View Post
However, I take your point about this all needing further illumination. The reporting in those papers isn't of the highest standard, and there is a confusing inter-mixing of the terms "hybrid", "sub-species" and "species". I hope the programme is more precise.
It's not just that. As I have said, this reporting has all the hallmarks of a documentary series hyping itself by sending press releases to newspapers, hence the trailer for the documentary itself on the Telegraph link.

IOW, it's an advert for a show on TV.
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