In the Valley of the Wood Ape

Posted by: Craig Woolheater on April 2nd, 2013

Ape Appellations

Over many centuries numerous appellations have been ascribed to the huge hairy hominoids said to inhabit North America, “Bigfoot” being one of the more widely used in recent decades. In his opening address at the 2013 Texas Bigfoot Conference, Brian Brown first announced the TBRC move to officially change its name to the North American Wood Ape Conservancy and the rationale behind the NAWAC decision to largely cease using the media moniker “Bigfoot” when referring to the species (video presentation below).

2013 Texas Bigfoot Conference Presentation (3/16/2013)
Copyright 2013 NAWAC

As a companion piece to his conference presentation, Brown subsequently provided an article on the NAWAC website summarizing the reasons for the change. While it is not necessary to reiterate those reasons, we would like to further discuss the “wood ape” appellation in terms of its use by others, predating the NAWAC’s use of the moniker, and its relevance from a natural science perspective. Although some may question or even deride the semantic modification, we propose that the term “wood ape” is an altogether more fittingly descriptive term and a more appropriate designator from a scientific perspective.

Read the entire article here.

About Craig Woolheater
Co-founder of Cryptomundo in 2005. I have appeared in or contributed to the following TV programs, documentaries and films: OLN's Mysterious Encounters: "Caddo Critter", Southern Fried Bigfoot, Travel Channel's Weird Travels: "Bigfoot", History Channel's MonsterQuest: "Swamp Stalker", The Wild Man of the Navidad, Destination America's Monsters and Mysteries in America: Texas Terror - Lake Worth Monster, Animal Planet's Finding Bigfoot: Return to Boggy Creek and Beast of the Bayou.

4 Responses to “In the Valley of the Wood Ape”

  1. DWA responds:


    Suicide-bent hoaxin’ hillbillies who have been training for this for ten years, with all the resources of Hollywood behind them. And an average IQ of 284.

    Or wood apes, one or t’other.

  2. Mïk responds:

    Well, if’n they’re gonna go re-naming apes all on their own, shouldn’t they consider the differences ‘tween ’em in the various regions? I don’t think the southern mid-west (NAWAC’s bailey-wick) is the same as the southeastern ‘skunk ape’, nor does the Pacific Coast ‘sasquatch’ match up in habitat or life-style of either. Down East has a different version than the northern plains. And those of the far north in Canada can’t be consider the same as the desert’s of Arizona and New Mexico. Shouldn’t we be getting these sorted out, if us humans are gonna start picking sides?

  3. Dufusyte responds:

    Seems like bad timing to call it an ape when DNA has just proved it to be a “human x mystery-proto-lemur” hybrid.

    On a related note, they say the New York Times was still printing editorials about how aircraft flight was impossible, while the Wright brothers were flying around South Carolina and Ohio for anyone to see…

    Sometimes it takes some time for new discoveries to enter the general consciousness.

  4. DWA responds:


    There may well be more than one kind we’re dealing with. Encounter literature gives reason to think this; everywhere there is one known ape, there is another; and there is more than one species of pretty much everything else in North America – cat; dog; deer; turtle; bat; frog; mouse; etc.

    There seems to be – and among scientific advocates no less – this resistance to the idea that there’s more than one species of non-human primate in NA. Granted we don’t have a reason to conclude that. But it is certainly a live notion. What I see in the objections is a naive presumption that the more species one has, the more individuals; and that this would somehow make them easier to detect. There is really no reason to think that, when no one who counts in terms of proof believes anyone who saw one.

    Once one of them is confirmed, occurrences elsewhere will achieve new credibility. Then and only then will we really start sussing this out.


    As usual, you have your proponents, and your proponents. I can tell you from talking to them that NAWAC is none too enamored of Dr. Ketchum’s science or conclusions. One can never assume a “proponent stance;” they’re all over the place. I tend to stick with those who appear to be using science correctly; and Ketchum does not strike me that way from what has happened so far.

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