Geneticist Bryan Sykes of the University of Oxford said, “I’m challenging and inviting the cryptozoologists to come up with the evidence instead of complaining that science is rejecting what they have to say.”
The project is called the Oxford-Lausanne Collateral Hominid Project which is being led by Sykes and Michel Sartori of the zoology museum.
Sykes also said, “It would be wonderful if one or more [of the samples] turned out to be species we don’t know about, maybe primates, maybe even collateral hominids.” He’s referring to hominids such as Neanderthals or Denosivans, a mostly unknown hominid species that lived in Siberia 40,000 years ago.
Sykes is asking people with samples to first submit detailed descriptions of what they have, including photographs. He does not want to receive haphazard pieces of skin, hair, or scat.
Then he and his colleagues will review the submissions and decide which would be best for testing purposes. Once selected, the team will send the chosen submitters a sampling kit.
“As an academic, I have certain reservations about entering this field, but I think using genetic analysis is entirely objective; it can’t be falsified,” said Sykes. “So I don’t have to put myself into the position of either believing or disbelieving these creatures.”
The collection period extends through September. After that, through November, the testing will occur. Results will be published in a peer-reviewed article in a scientific journal shortly after that, probably in the December timeframe. Sykes added, “This would be the first such publication of cryptozoology results.”
Is There Any Hope?
Earlier in Sykes career he set out to find DNA from ancient human remains even though he felt the endeavor would most likely be unsuccessful. But he did succeed in finding DNA from these remains and published that report in the journal Nature in 1989.
So let’s hope he succeeds this time, despite all his skepticism!
Prepare an email that includes the following information:
- Your name, institutional affiliation (University, college, Bigfoot research group, etc.)
- Physical description of the sample (hair, tooth, scat). Include any and all photos you have of these materials.
- The sample’s provenance: that means tell them where, when, and how you obtained the sample(s). If you didn’t collect it directly, tell them how you obtained the sample(s).
- Identification: tell them what you think it is (what animal) and why you feel that way.
- Authority: Include a statement (sentence or two) that you are entitled to send the specimen for analysis. Also include a sentence that gives the researchers permission to publish the results. This is very important!
The researchers prefer hair samples (to avoid misidentification of samples due to human contamination), but they will consider other tissues.
When ready, send the email to Dr. Sykes and Dr. Sartori at these email addresses:
Email Subject Line: Use OLCHP as the subject for your email.
DO NOT send any samples until you are contacted by Dr. Sykes. If they want to test your samples, they will send you a Sample Kit with directions how to proceed from there.
Don’t be upset if your samples aren’t chosen. The process of finding viable DNA is VERY tricky and these experts will be able to tell which samples give them the best chance, scientifically, of finding that DNA.
Dear Drs. Sykes and Sartori,
I’d like to submit a sample for your cryptozoological DNA test.
Name: SA McNally, I’m with CryptoVille blog
<put your email address>
<put your mailing address>
Description: 3 inch long piece of reddish auburn hair. (If your sample also has what looks like the root of the hair attached, MENTION that! Very important.)
Provenance: Found it in the woods stuck on a sago palm leaf, about 25 miles west of Pensacola, FL, USA. We were hiking through the <xxx state park or whatever> and saw some Bigfoot footprints in the mud. It had rained earlier in the day so the ground was wet and muddy. I just looked to the left and noticed this tuft of hair on the sago palm leaf. I put it in a plastic ziplock bag that I always carry with me for evidence collecting. I found it on the February 10, 2012.
Authority: I am entitled to share this sample with you, as the finder and owner of the sample. I give you permission to publish the results of any testing done to this sample I’m submitting.
Don’t forget to attach any photos to the email, and make the Subject line “OLCHP”.
Let Us Know
Please let us know here in CryptoVille if your sample is chosen! Share the joy – we’d love to celebrate along with you!
Good luck to you all!