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Half a century ago, Belgian Zoologist Bernard Heuvelmans first codified cryptozoology in his book On the Track of Unknown Animals.

The Centre for Fortean Zoology (CFZ) are still on the track, and have been since 1992. But as if chasing unknown animals wasn't enough, we are involved in education, conservation, and good old-fashioned natural history! We already have three journals, the largest cryptozoological publishing house in the world, CFZtv, and the largest cryptozoological conference in the English-speaking world, but in January 2009 someone suggested that we started a daily online magazine! The CFZ bloggo is a collaborative effort by a coalition of members, friends, and supporters of the CFZ, and covers all the subjects with which we deal, with a smattering of music, high strangeness and surreal humour to make up the mix.

It is edited by CFZ Director Jon Downes, and subbed by the lovely Lizzy Bitakara'mire (formerly Clancy), scourge of improper syntax. The daily newsblog is edited by Corinna Downes, head administratrix of the CFZ, and the indexing is done by Lee Canty and Kathy Imbriani. There is regular news from the CFZ Mystery Cat study group, and regular fortean bird news from 'The Watcher of the Skies'. Regular bloggers include Dr Karl Shuker, Dale Drinnon, Richard Muirhead and Richard Freeman.The CFZ bloggo is updated daily, and there's nothing quite like it anywhere else. Come and join us...

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Sunday, November 28, 2010

DALE DRINNON: Wildmen of Southeast Asia - Tote-Up

It seems that generally there is a larger and a smaller type of 'wildman' throughout southeast Asia, and they both correspond to the types in India, Tibet and China as well. In other words, the 'wildmen' of Vietnam, Cambodia and so on are contiguous with the Chinese 'wildmen' and the Indian 'wildmen' (such as the ones recently sought by a CFZ expedition) Ivan Sanderson identified the larger type as the Tok and Kung-Lu in southeast Asia, but they are the same as the Shan (and variants) in South China and North Vietnam, as well as the larger type of "Yeti", and the larger type of Chinese 'Wildman'

Recently I was going over my records of the Vietnamese wildmen, or Nguoi Rung, as well as the possible surviving mainland orangutans, for which I make a distinction and identify with the Da Nhan and the Americans' "Rock Apes." From the information given to me by my informants (and just confirmed this morning by a message from certain Vietnamese cryptozoological authorities), the strictly hominid Vietnamese wildmen (including the Nguoi Rung) come in a larger and a smaller size; the smaller ones about five feet tall, broadly 4'6" to 5'6" and more tightly with average heights from 4' 8" to 5'4" (females on the low end of height estimates and males at the higher end) with tracks frm 6 inches to 9 inches or usually 8 inches long; and then the larger 'wildmen' that are six feet and over leaving tracks that are a foot long and over. The range in estimates would then be heights up to an estimated 8'6" and a tighter average of height estimates from 6' 9" to 7' 6" and tracks reported as 12 to 16 inches long. That is on the smaller end of Sasquatch tracks and height estimates but probably comparable with the Tok and Kung-Lu.

Against this I feel I can say now that the rock apes would more usually be between three feet and five feet tall, comparable to a chimpanzee and closely resembling one otherwise; and in this description it closely matches the Yeh-Teh, Yeren and ibagon of the more common sort. It is also likely to be the surviving mainland population of 'fossil pongo', somewhat larger than an orangutan and adapted to living on the ground more (without the more specialised traits for climbing that have been acquired by orangutans proper). The colouration of all types is highly variable but ordinarily some shade of brown; the 'wildmen' are more ordinarily dark or blackish, although white ones are regularly reported, and the apes more usually reddish brown. I should also stress that the reported appearances of the various types is extremely similar within the types: the Almas type is very similar to the smaller Vietnamese wildman or to the Rakshi-Bompo of the Himalayas and their tracks are very similar; the Sasquatch types are always described as being much like the American Sasquatch in appearance and in the size and shape of the tracks; and the rock apes or "Bigmonkey" (Mahalangur) types are illustrated as generally being extremely similar to a chimpanzee or orangutan, and including whether the same type of creature is called a Yeti or a Hibagon.

It would be helpful if we had more reports or tracks to go on, but the 'ape' tracks are generally consistent and directly in opposition to the human-like 'wildman' tracks wherever they might appear. And of the entire series, the Shipton Yeti tracks stand out not only for having the unusually large second toe, but also for being very much larger than the norm for the entire series otherwise (something like 150% larger in both length and width than usual)

On the second illustration, "Yetiscale" from the Cambodian Bigfoot site, the smaller ape does illustrate a good representation of the Yeti as commonly reported, smaller but bulkier than a regular human being. That is the exact description which I heard independantly from Vietnamese informants about the Da Nhan and from American soldiers about the Rock Apes.

1 comment:

Dale Drinnon said...

Thanks for posting this: there is the other piece on Cambodian Gigantos which really should have come before it and ALL of the Chinese, Tibetan, and Southeast Asian blog entries are one continuity. There is also still at least one piece which got left out from before, about the Kapre in the Philippines, and you are missing the map which goes with this piece. But my Vietnamese contacts shall be pleased to see this go up and I shall send them the link to it.