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Relict Skull Results: Khwit and Relative?

Posted by: Loren Coleman on January 11th, 2007

Zana Khwit Russian Bigfoot

There’s news out of German cryptozoology site about new DNA results on the skull of Khwit (shown above) and another new find. In August, 2006, the Russian newspaper Komsomol’skaja Pravda (1) reported on the examination of a skull assumed to be from a “relic hominoid” from Abkazia. Most have talked about their relationship to the Almasty mystery. Igor Bourtsev, who found the skull, was invited to visit the USA for its analysis. (2)

Zana Khwit Russian Bigfoot

Bourtsev wrote in the Mugamir Russian website that he was in New York from July 13-20, on an invitation from NG-TV. The DNA of the skull from Khwit and another female skull from a neighboring grave of Khwit were examined at New York University. NG-TV filmed his talk with a geneticist and an anthropologist.

Zana Khwit Russian Bigfoot
Mother Zana and baby Khwit

According to Bourtsev, the preliminary result of the DNA analysis is that the skulls are most likely related. Khwit’s skull is an “Australoid type.” Some measurements of the skull are greater than the maximum values known from modern man. The female skull – according to Bourtsev – is an “African type,” with a strongly defined skeletal, lower facial and teeth prognathism. Despite the DNA relationship of the skulls, the anthropologist is skeptical that they are related because of the many morphological differences. Nothing is shared about Burtsev’s hypothesis of a genetic relationship to the Neanderthal. A written report of the examination is expected.

(1) Lagovskij, Vladimir. 2006. A Caucasian Prisoner. Komsomol’skaja Pravda, August 11 (in Russian).

(2) Moscow hominologist “Khwit” gives bone sample to the USA for investigation.

Zana Khwit Russian Bigfoot
The rarely seen skull of Zana, showing the prognathism.

Main source: “Igor Bourtsev on the Examination of two Skulls from Abkazia/Caucasus”. Thanks to Mark A. Hall for noting this to us.

Zana Khwit Russian Bigfoot

I have more to say about the Is It Real? morphological examination of the Khwit skull, and how they used the wrong skulls for comparison, some other time.

About Loren Coleman
Loren Coleman is one of the world’s leading cryptozoologists, some say “the” leading. 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.


9 Responses to “Relict Skull Results: Khwit and Relative?”

  1. bill green responds:

    hey loren this is definetly a very interesting new article about skulls. very informative, anything is possible. these skulls do look authentic but more research needs to done to the skulls & the area where they were found very throughly. thanks bill

  2. shumway10973 responds:

    Then the question rises to the top, was any of the evidence tampered with-switched or something? Of course they could be related, but to what degree are they related? Mother to son, aunt to nephew? Or are they related similarly to us being related to the great apes? And how do they know that the female skull wasn’t just another case like the pic at top?

  3. Alton Higgins responds:

    As featured by NG in the television program, the DNA analysis was performed by Todd Disotell.

    The proposed genetic relationship, as determined by the comparison of the bone material from the two skulls, was likened to that of a mother and a child.

  4. UCTZoology responds:

    “genetic relationship to the Neanderthal”

    There is a clearly definable chin on the lower skull. The chin was one of ‘our’ latest evolutionary ‘gains’. Neanderthal lower jaw does not exhibit a chin. So i agree with the statement about morphologicl differences and doubt the genetic similiarities with neanderthals. I dont know what statistical trees they used to associate the molecular data with, but no neanderthal IMHO

  5. jayman responds:

    It’s not strictly true Neanderthals didn’t have a chin… there was an edge or angle on the mandible. But Homo sapiens has a more pronounced and distinctively shaped chin.

    A hypothetical sapiens-Neanderthal hybrid could well have a sapiens type chin… nobody knows.

  6. Tengu responds:

    I’m not at all convinced.

    Neanderthals have brow ridges, right? (and their skulls look pretty funny full stop)

    Modern humans do not have, as a rule brow ridges (some do, inevitably males, but they are not very pronounced.)

    These skulls look modern with a certain amount of variables…not surprising since they purportedly come from a very mixed area.

    (perhaps ‘Zana’ was a thumb sucker?)

    And how old are these skulls anyway?

  7. jayman responds:

    RE brow ridges, what I have read, the distinguishing thing was shape. Some modern Homo sapiens do have fairly well developed brow ridges, but they always have a distinctive form, being divided into an inner and outer portion, with a sort of “flat spot” in between. In Neanderthals, the ridge formed a continuous arch over each eye, and in Homo erectus the ridge went right across the forehead like the peak of a cap. Interestingly, Khwit has a more pronounced ridge than Zana, but that may be due to his being male.

    These skulls to me resemble fossils from the Mideast that have been assigned to an archaic type of Homo sapiens.

  8. dharkheart responds:

    I thought Zana’s grave had been lost. I can’t recall reading anything about her skull having been found let alone photographed.

    At any rate, “Zana’s” skull seems tiny: using the hand in which it is held as a size reference, it appears no larger than a child’s skull.

  9. Dalton responds:

    I have a question regarding the photo at the top of the article.

    Who can confirm this is the photo of Khwit?

    I have seen the abkazia skull photo before. I have also seen the photo at the top of the article before (though I can’t recall where). This is the first time I have seen this photo linked with Khwit.



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