Posted by: Loren Coleman on February 23rd, 2007
News out of Africa about chimpanzees fashioning and using tools has a direct impact on a recent debate about Bigfoot. As you will recall, M. K. Davis made public statements about a stick being held by the Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot, and connected it to Bigfoot being human, due to that stick. Besides the fact few could see the stick that Davis saw, the counterpoint is that great apes do use sticks, of course, and use of such a tool is no measure of “humanity.”
I am not going to rehash the entire unfolding of the new finding readily available via this article, “Chimps Use ‘Spears’ to Hunt Mammals, Study Says” and now being seen in news rewrites around the world.
But here’s a one sentence summary of what has been discovered and announced this week:
No fewer than 22 times, researchers documented wild chimpanzees on an African savanna fashioning sticks into “spears” to hunt small primates called lesser bush babies.John Roach,National Geographic News
What does this have to do with cryptozoology, Cryptomundo, and Bigfoot affairs? Well, as you may remember, those recent comments from M.K. Davis noted that if Bigfoot carries a big stick, it must be human (specifically via an unfortunate characterization of a certain group of California native peoples). As this new African research shows, using a tool, or even killing with a stick, does not equal “being human.”
I found that the Patterson subject was carrying…a stick.M. K. Davis, December 3, 2006
Above (top and directly here) are two photographs; (1) a common chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes) digging with a stick; and (2) a lowland gorilla (Gorilla gorilla) with a stick. We now know that chimps also kill and attempt to kill with sticks.
If the Patterson Bigfoot was carrying a stick, which I doubt, does not inform any finding as to Bigfoot being a form of undiscovered ape, versus Davis’ idea that it must be an “Indian.”
For more on the Davis-Bigfoot discussion, see the following postings and the links to be found therein: “Bigfoot With A Stick?”, and “What Stick?”, where Green, Noll, and Murphy dispute the fact there is even a stick being held by the Bigfoot shown in the Patterson-Gimlin footage.
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading living cryptozoologist. Certainly, he is acknowledged as the current living American researcher and writer who has most popularized cryptozoology in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Starting his fieldwork and investigations in 1960, after traveling and trekking extensively in pursuit of cryptozoological mysteries, Coleman began writing to share his experiences in 1969. An honorary member of Ivan T. Sanderson’s Society for the Investigation of the Unexplained in the 1970s, Coleman has been bestowed with similar honorary memberships of the North Idaho College Cryptozoology Club in 1983, and in subsequent years, that of the British Columbia Scientific Cryptozoology Club, CryptoSafari International, and other international organizations. He was also a Life Member and Benefactor of the International Society of Cryptozoology (now-defunct). Loren Coleman’s daily blog, as a member of the Cryptomundo Team, served as an ongoing avenue of communication for the ever-growing body of cryptozoo news from 2005 through 2013. He returned as an infrequent contributor beginning Halloween week of 2015. Coleman is the founder in 2003, and current director of the International Cryptozoology Museum in Portland, Maine.