Scientists find a plausible explanation for Bigfoot: does it really exist?
The myth of the existence of a wild species of people who live in forests completely covered with wool and have no contact with civilisation is popular among many peoples of the world. They are called Bigfoot, Yeti, Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and are sought after by almost all lovers of all kinds of paranormal phenomena. So far, these searches have not yielded any results. However, scientists have given a plausible explanation of how the legend could have come about.
According to Science Alert, a data scientist named Flow Foxon showed that in most cases of sightings in the United States and Canada, black bears walking on their hind legs were probably mistaken for Bigfoot. Usually, American black bears (Ursus americanus) move on four legs, but sometimes they stand up to their full height when they want to sniff or look at something interesting. In this case, they really resemble huge and very hairy people.
Foxon was not the first to suggest that black bears were behind the myth of their existence. In 2005, researchers compared data on the population of these animals with reports of Bigfoot sightings in the northwestern United States. However, the conclusion then showed that other species were most likely responsible for the appearance of this mythical creature.
But in 2009, another paper based on data from the same region showed a high degree of overlap between black bear populations and the locations where Bigfoot was allegedly sighted. Foxon expanded this analysis to include all places in the US and Canada where black bears and humans live close to each other.
The information he used to observe Bigfoot came from the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organisation. Its enthusiasts keep a database of eyewitness reports dating back to the twentieth century. The reports also indicate the location where people allegedly observed Bigfoot. Foxon then compared this information with local data on the density and distribution of black bears, as well as population density. According to the researcher, this analysis is more in-depth than the simplistic projections used in previous articles.
The researcher was able to link reports of Bigfoot sightings to black bears. According to his data, the correlation is particularly clear in the northwest near the Pacific coast. On the other hand, in Texas and Florida, black bears are not as common, but residents of these states still report encounters with Bigfoot. "While this could be interpreted as evidence of an unknown hominid in North America, it could also be due to misidentification of other animals (including humans)," the researcher believes.
However, in general, states such as Texas and Florida are the exception to the rule. On average, Foxon found that for every 900 black bears in one state or province of Canada, there is one Bigfoot sighting.
As for other regions of the world where legends of Bigfoot exist, their appearance may be associated with other species of bears. In the mountains of Asia, for example, it is likely that Bigfoot is actually an Asian black bear, a Himalayan brown bear or a Tibetan brown bear covered in snow.
It is an interesting fact that the material evidence of the alleged existence of Bigfoot collected in the past, such as teeth and hair, always belonged to an animal known to science. As a rule, these were bears.
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