Johor Wars: How About All The Tracks?

Posted by: Loren Coleman on December 16th, 2006

The Malaysian Natural Resources and Environment Ministry Parliamentary Secretary Datuk Sazmi Miahis is fighting with Johor’s Tourism and Environment Committee Chairman Freddie Long over the “reality” of the “Johor Bigfoot.” The debate has turned ugly in the papers in Malaysia on December 16th.

Forgotten in the debate, apparently, are all the footprints, confusing as the picture may be, that have been found, including ones dating back to the 1970s of the Orang Dalam.

Malaysia Bigfoot

This track, photographed on November 17, 2006, is the “one” mentioned my Minister Sazmi. But what of the others? See below.

According to the New Straits Times, the country’s Ministry says that the Johor Bigfoot is “a hoax” which has “no concrete evidence to back up the creature’s existence [and] no droppings or hair of the creature had ever been found.”

The paper continues by noting;

…the state Wildlife Department had been monitoring the jungles of Johor for the past 40 years and there was no firm evidence to prove the creature’s existence. Remote-sensing cameras were also set up in the jungles a few years ago to capture animals’ movements and, so far, the only sightings were of known animals.

The ministry’s parliamentary secretary, Datuk Sazmi Miah told the New Straits Times:

“If there’s truly a Bigfoot, there would have been firm evidence of its existence or the cameras would have captured its image or movements.”

He believed the hoax was perpetrated by certain quarters to generate interest among foreign scientists who were interested in obtaining the jungle’s lush flora and fauna.

To a question, Sazmi said eyewitnesses, who claimed to have seen the creature, could have mistaken an ape (mawas) or sun bear for a Bigfoot.

“To date, the evidence has been a so-called footprint. Don’t tell me that the creature walked on one leg? That’s not possible,” he scoffed.

Meanwhile, Johor’s Tourism and Environment Committee chairman Freddie Long said the state government was keeping an open mind over the creature’s existence.

“No one can simply dismiss its existence. Our jungles are 248 million years old with numerous species yet to be discovered. How could he (Sazmi) make such a sweeping statement?” said the irate Long.

He said the creature’s existence needed some time to be verified. “We are very keen to pursue this and welcome researchers and scientists to contact us on their investigations into the Johor Bigfoot.”

He pointed out that the Loch Ness monster in Scotland had never been proven, but that did not prevent droves of tourists from trying to catch a glimpse of the creature.

“Similarly, with the Johor Bigfoot, it has created a lot of interest and we have seen an influx of tourists coming in.”

Source for above: “Bigfoot? It’s all a big lie” by Eileen Ng, New Straits Times, December 16, 2006.

But what about the other footprints – the different kinds of them?

Malaysia Bigfoot Footprints

Johor Bigfoot


Vincent Chow Bigfoot

Malaysia Bigfoot

Malaysia Bigfoot Footprints

Nothing in 40 years? What about the evidence from the 1970s…below, which seems to have produced more consistent footprint finds:

Malasian Mystery

Photo: Close up of the track of the Orang Dalam on a Malaysian sandbar found during Harold Stephens’ expedition.

Harold Stephens

Click on the above image for fuller-sized version.

Loren Coleman About Loren Coleman
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.

8 Responses to “Johor Wars: How About All The Tracks?”

  1. oldbutnotstupid responds:

    Enough of the Johor fakery already. Not one of these photos looks even remotely real. I like the one in the garbage patch or what ever it is, the creature was kind enough to remove the stones from the print and stack them neatly around the edge. Lets keep Cryptomundo real and show this Johor money scheme fakery the door. Please, it’s very tiring.

  2. mystery_man responds:

    The thing that gets me is that all of these photos appear to me to show different foot shapes beyond what you would expect from merely individual differences. Foot shape, toe shape and spacing, even number of toes differs from picture to picture. They just do not strike me as all being from one particular species. If these are hoaxes, the hoaxers would do well to decide on a universal template for their bogus footprints. Unless of course there are multiple types of hairy hominids lurking in the jungle there.

  3. DWA responds:

    Wake me when a troop of mawas enter the camp, steal all the print casts, and head for the hills.

    And it’s caught on film.


  4. alanborky responds:

    Bureacrats red tape will leave Bigfoot all tied up: This is one of the difficulties that’s going to be encountered more and more whenever a cryptid story arises in those parts of the world currently undergoing technological and economic transformations.

    Many in the regions concerned will already be experiencing a needless sense of inadequacy, and possibly even shame, at what they see as their nations’ ‘need’ to “catch up with the Jones’.”

    The sort of individuals concerned will often be found amongst those who inhabit civil service posts or perform other kinds of roles connected with the general maintenance of their society’s infrastructure: in other words they’ll be numbered amongst precisely those individuals who most stand to gain by their nation being given a technological upgrading; and so anything even remotely tinged with superstition will be automatically viewed by them as symptomatic of exactly the sort of ‘primitive’ and ‘backward’ oriented attitudes that led to their being technologically and economically ‘left behind’ in the first place, and therefore a major threat.

    Hence, probably for a long time to come, the likes of Bigfoot is likely to receive from the bureaucrats and other associated petty powerbrokers of these regions, increasingly short shrift.

  5. bill green responds:

    hey loren good evening wow thanks for posting this new update article the johor hominids situation very interesting indeedy. thanks bill

  6. vet72 responds:

    Hmm, this sounds all too familiar.

  7. busterggi responds:

    The stories predate the hoaxes so there may still be a kernel of truth in there.

    Too bad there are so many Ray Wallace/Bob Heironimous types over there messing things up.

  8. UKCryptid responds:

    Too many hoaxers all trying to work the same area will often cause problems like this. It’s a shame because if there genuinely is a currently unknown species there then it will be far harder to find and protect with all the more ‘stupid’ attention being drawn to the subject.

    One other thing I’ve noticed about the majority (not all) of prints from that region is that only one was found.

    Do we have a one legged, ultra long jumping species there?

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