Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Untimely Yeti Footprints found in Siberia

Siberian Yeti foot print (© Photo: «Vesti.Ru»)
We use the word "untimely" because usually Yeti news in the Shoria region falls in late September and early October. This timing usually funnels right into the tourism season starting with Yeti Day on November 11th. Of course this does not dis-qualify the great research (read our Kemerovo news coverage) being done in the region, we are only asserting that the Yeti is not usually on the minds of the population and media until Yeti Day begins to approach.

Below is an article from the Voice of Russia. 

Do yetis exist after all?

Maria Domnitskaya
Jun 19, 2012 18:31 Moscow Time

Fresh footprints of a yeti have recently been found in the region of Gornaya Shoria in Siberia. This picturesque mountainous area is sometimes dubbed a “Siberian Switzerland”.

A group of Italian scientists plans to visit Gornaya Shoria to look for more evidence that yetis really exist.

This is not the first time that footprints which are believed to belong to these mysterious creatures have been discovered in this region. Some local residents claim that they have seen yetis with their own eyes. As a rule, yetis’ footprints are found in the vicinity of the Azasskaya Cave and the Karatag Mountain.

Yetis’ footprints are bigger than those of humans – they can reach 45 cms in length. That’s why yetis are also called “Bigfoot”.

Gornaya Shoria has already become to be associated with claims of evidence that yetis exist. Every year, the tourist season in the local mountains opens with a celebration of ‘Yeti Day’, when tourists can find yeti souvenirs all over Shoria.

Local hunters call Bigfoot “the spirit of the taiga”.

In October 2011, a delegation of US, Canadian, Swedish, Estonian and Russian scientists explored the Azasskaya Cave. They didn’t find a yeti, but discovered a large footprint and small samples of hair inside it.

The hairs were up to 8 cms long, curly, gray along the whole length except at the root which was black.

The hair samples were taken to St. Petersburg and thoroughly examined at a local zoological institute. It turned out that they were identical to which was thought to be yetis’ hairs found earlier in California in the US, as well as outside St. Petersburg and in the Ural Mountains in Russia.

One of the members of the expedition, a member of St. Petersburg and New York academies, Valentin Sapunov says:

“These hairs are very similar to the other hairs which were found in 4 different parts of the world and are believed to be yeti hairs. The results from the tests conducted by the scientists indicate that these hair samples are very likely to belong to creatures of one and the same species. A scientific mistake would be highly unlikely.”

However, only genetic testing can prove or disprove that yetis are related to the Homo Sapiens. An attempt made by Russian scientists to examine the DNA of yetis’ hair samples found near St. Petersburg and in the Urals was unsuccessful due to lack of appropriate equipment. But when US scientists announced that the results of their testing apparently proved that the DNA of the yeti’s hair from California was in no way different to that of the Homo Sapiens, very few people actually believed them.

At present, Russian scientists are trying to extract DNA from the hair samples believed to be those of a yeti, which were found in the Azasskaya Cave.

In the meantime, a well-known genetic Professor Bryan Sykes from Oxford University is concluding his own tests. Using equipment of the latest generation, Professor Sykes is trying to prove that yetis really exist. As a sample, he uses what is believed to be yeti remains, which are held at the Museum of Zoology in the Swiss city of Lausanne.

Professor Sykes has posted a request on the museum website, which asks everyone, who may possess what they believe to be yeti remains, to send them to Professor Sykes for testing.

He promises to announce the results of the testing in December.

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