Science - If bigfoot is there, it could be a bear.

FatPhil

Senior Member.
https://zslpublications.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jzo.13148

Bigfoot: If it's there, could it be a bear?
Floe Foxon

Abstract

It has been suggested that the American black bear (Ursus americanus) may be responsible for a significant number of purported sightings of an alleged unknown species of hominid in North America. Previous analyses have identified a correlation between ‘sasquatch’ or ‘bigfoot’ sightings and black bear populations in the Pacific Northwest using ecological niche models and simple models of expected animal sightings. The present study expands the analysis to the entire US and Canada by modelling sasquatch sightings and bear populations in each state/province while adjusting for human population and forest area in a generalized linear model. Sasquatch sightings were statistically significantly associated with bear populations such that, on the average, every 1000 $$ 1000 $$ bear increase in the bear population is associated with a 4 % $$ 4\% $$ ( 95 % $$ 95\% $$ CI: 1 $$ 1 $$ – 7 % $$ 7\% $$ ) increase in sasquatch sightings. Thus, as black bear populations increase, sasquatch sightings are expected to increase. On average, across all states and provinces in 2006, after controlling for human population and forest area, there were approximately 5000 $$ 5000 $$ bears per sasquatch sighting. Based on statistical considerations, it is likely that many supposed sasquatch are really misidentified known forms. If bigfoot is there, it could be a bear.
Content from External Source
 
The quoting has ruined the presentation of the mathematical formulae.
Thanks for clearing that up. I was afraid Phil was having a stroke.

On the assumption that a Sasquatch, if it existed at all, would be both a competitor and a foe for a similarly sized bear, it would be surprising indeed if they shared a territory, wouldn't it?
 
To be a little pedantic, I offer that like alien sightings which are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be aliens; Sasquatch sightings are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be Sasquatch (Bigfoot, yeti, etc).
Until these cryptids are proven to actually exist, it is disingenuous to assert what people are seeing. People don't actually know what they see. These reports are really nothing more than "I don't know what I saw, but I know it was Sasquatch."

This may seem trivial as a point of fact, but much of the widespread belief in cryptids (as well as aliens) comes from the large numbers of claimed sightings. It's the old, "some of them must be true" argument.
I think the skeptical community should make it a practice of referring to these claims as assertions rather than sightings.
 
I think the skeptical community should make it a practice of referring to these claims as assertions rather than sightings.
Not 100% aligned on that. We need to engage with the public to persuade the public, and that means we need to use language the way that the public understands it. Poncing around with a pedantically precise argot can be *harmful* to that end.

And yes, this might appear hypocritical coming from me, but I don't engage with the public, I only engage with my fellow elite MBians.
 
The quoting has ruined the presentation of the mathematical formulae.

Oi! Learn TeX, you heathen! (Not that my quoting would even be sensible TeX, $$ is a block element, only $ is needed for an inline element.)

Just as an aside, whilst I'm here, this paper was a "Perspective", which meant at the time meant nothing to me, but after some digging because I had to satisfy my curiosity means:

The ‘Perspectives’ category include forum papers, primers, future trends and opposing points, and commentaries such as summaries of the state of the field, discussions of theoretical frameworks, gaps in knowledge and/or methodology in zoology, novel directions for future research, and commentaries on the practice of zoology. Authors wishing to submit review articles or ‘Perspectives’ are advised to contact the Reviews Editors at journalofzoology@zsl.org prior to submission.
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-- https://zslpublications.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/hub/journal/14697998/author-guidelines

I.e. hasn't had peer review, possibly may never have peer review.
 
To be a little pedantic, I offer that like alien sightings which are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be aliens; Sasquatch sightings are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be Sasquatch (Bigfoot, yeti, etc).
Someone did identify these sightings; just not correctly (probably).
 
Not 100% aligned on that. We need to engage with the public to persuade the public, and that means we need to use language the way that the public understands it. Poncing around with a pedantically precise argot can be *harmful* to that end.

And yes, this might appear hypocritical coming from me, but I don't engage with the public, I only engage with my fellow elite MBians.
I disagree. Addressing these claims using the same language gives credibility to the claim. It's as if we are saying someone saw a Sasquatch, and we don't think they did; where we could be saying someone has asserted that some unknown thing he saw was a Sasquatch. I am sure some work could be done with the phrasing, but the idea is to begin with the idea that they don't know what they saw, rather than accepting their claim and then trying to refute it.
There's no good reason to think Sasquatch are real, so no reason to treat claims as legitimate.
 
Someone did identify these sightings; just not correctly (probably).
Well, no they didn't. You can't identify something that isn't real. I saw a ghost is not a factual statement, and identifying some visual anomaly as a ghost shouldn't be treated as credible. The same should apply to Sasquatch. They are mythical creatures, like fairies and leprechauns. The problem with Bigfoot claims is that they took ahold of the public's imagination to the point that people treat the claims differently than they would other preposterous claims.
Yes, it is an uphill battle as the people are largely pretty gullible.
 
To be a little pedantic, I offer that like alien sightings which are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be aliens; Sasquatch sightings are actually unidentified sightings asserted to be Sasquatch (Bigfoot, yeti, etc).

Wait a sec - how come you're allowing yourself to use the noun phrases "alien sightings" and "Sasquatch sightings" whilst telling us to not use those phrases? That smacks of hypocrisy to me. If you truly want to be pedantic, you're really going to need to get on top of the use/mention distinction.

@deirdre's right that, to remove ambiguity, "alleged" is a solution, but, in reality, the way we are all communicating already, it is taken as read that all claims are merely claims. Discussion of an absurd concept neither validates nor reifies the thing being referred to. Feel free to put "so-called" or "alleged" before such concepts, or wrap them in quote symbols, but (a) don't expect us to change our ways, this is not a miscommunication that is happening herein; (b) don't feign surprise if someone more pedantic than you points out any of your failures to so do.
 
Well, no they didn't. You can't identify something that isn't real. I saw a ghost is not a factual statement, and identifying some visual anomaly as a ghost shouldn't be treated as credible. The same should apply to Sasquatch. They are mythical creatures, like fairies and leprechauns.
Look at this:
Article:
Rainbow_Leprechaun.png
CC-BY-SA SatyrTN

I can identify this as a picture of a leprechaun, even though I agree with you that leprechauns are not real: the picture is real.

Similarly, when someone says, "I saw a sasquatch", I can identify this as a sasquatch sighting, because the sighting is real even though the sasquatch likely does not exist, and the sighting is based on a misidentification. The sighting is identified correctly by calling it a sasquatch sighting (though you could also call it a probable bear sighting).
 
Look at this:
Article:
Rainbow_Leprechaun.png
CC-BY-SA SatyrTN

I can identify this as a picture of a leprechaun, even though I agree with you that leprechauns are not real: the picture is real.

Similarly, when someone says, "I saw a sasquatch", I can identify this as a sasquatch sighting, because the sighting is real even though the sasquatch likely does not exist, and the sighting is based on a misidentification. The sighting is identified correctly by calling it a sasquatch sighting (though you could also call it a probable bear sighting).
I suppose if I can be pedantic so can you. ;-)
My goal here is to demote claims of cryptids (and other things) to the rank of imagination run wild, rather than leave them at their elevated status of reasonable.
 
Wait a sec - how come you're allowing yourself to use the noun phrases "alien sightings" and "Sasquatch sightings" whilst telling us to not use those phrases? That smacks of hypocrisy to me. If you truly want to be pedantic, you're really going to need to get on top of the use/mention distinction.

@deirdre's right that, to remove ambiguity, "alleged" is a solution, but, in reality, the way we are all communicating already, it is taken as read that all claims are merely claims. Discussion of an absurd concept neither validates nor reifies the thing being referred to. Feel free to put "so-called" or "alleged" before such concepts, or wrap them in quote symbols, but (a) don't expect us to change our ways, this is not a miscommunication that is happening herein; (b) don't feign surprise if someone more pedantic than you points out any of your failures to so do.
I don't wish to elevate the "sightings" of these imaginary things, and don't think pedantry needs to be elevated either.
 
i use alleged. an alleged ufo sighting. the alleged ufo sighting. oops i mean.. the alleged bigfoot sighting.

disclaimer: and i love bigfoot, while ufos bore me to tears.
Alleged isn't bad. It does convey doubt to the claim.
For me, I would like to drive cryptid claims out of serious discussion at all, though I admit it is unlikely that will happen. The next best thing is to treat those making these claims with a fair amount of derision.
 
disclaimer: and i love bigfoot, while ufos bore me to tears.

Yeah, but what if Bigfoot is traveling in UFOs? :D

1706112961532.png
In the 1960s, the CIA investigated an alleged simultaneous encounter with Bigfoot and a UFO at Presque Isle State Park in the all too appropriately named city — Erie, Pennsylvania. The ensuing reports were documented as part of the infamous Project Bluebook, during which the government investigated thousands of cases involving UFOs.
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https://www.gaia.com/article/ufos-bigfoot-evidence-interdimensional-connection

Alleged isn't bad. It does convey doubt to the claim.
For me, I would like to drive cryptid claims out of serious discussion at all, though I admit it is unlikely that will happen. The next best thing is to treat those making these claims with a fair amount of derision.

Responding to the claim can give the claim credence. A classic example of this was the USAF's report on Roswell where they talked about anthropomorphic dummies that were used in testing in the area during the late '50s. It was a logical idea; the suggestion was that people that were claiming in the '80 and '90s to have seen alien bodies near Roswell in 1947, had confabulated the test dummies from the '50s. Unfortunately, the UFOlogist took that seemingly reasonable argument as "So you're saying there were bodies!" The solution confirmed the claim.

It's been suggested that the USAF should have just said "There were no reports of alien bodies in 1947, the reports of alien bodies are from 30-40 years later and none of those reports stands up to scrutiny, therefore there is nothing to explain."

I'm not sure if either solution is correct. I think we try to take each case individually and proceed from there.
 
I'm not sure if either solution is correct. I think we try to take each case individually and proceed from there.
i think in debunking, honesty is the best policy. Because if you're caught out being dishonest (even for people like Corbell or the NYTimes etc), there really is no coming back from that.
 
i think in debunking, honesty is the best policy. Because if you're caught out being dishonest (even for people like Corbell or the NYTimes etc), there really is no coming back from that.
Are you kidding me? So Peter Popoff, the charlatan that was caught committing fraud on parishioners isn't back at it right now? What about Martha Stewart who was convicted by the Feds with a felony and served prison time? She's all over the TV and it's like people have forgotten all about what she did. People have short memories and con artists and criminals can make comebacks and many times do.
 
Are you kidding me? So Peter Popoff, the charlatan that was caught committing fraud on parishioners isn't back at it right now? What about Martha Stewart who was convicted by the Feds with a felony and served prison time? She's all over the TV and it's like people have forgotten all about what she did. People have short memories and con artists and criminals can make comebacks and many times do.
Martha Stewart was convicted of insider trading. she didnt lie to us about the use of vanilla in her tart recipe or that using natural twig sprigs will give your home a more peaceful, cozy feel.

Whether people BELIEVE someone lied is a different story.
 
she didnt lie to us about the use of vanilla in her tart recipe
Article:
The press release states “Stewart is leveraging her passion for home cooking and healthy nutrition, as well as her passion for pets, to create Martha Stewart Pet Food. ‘My pets mean the world to me, which is why I insist on feeding them delicious whole ingredients like real chicken, fish, cage-free eggs, and nutrient-dense grains and vegetables,’ Stewart said.”
But Martha Stewart’s new pet food line is not made with all whole food ingredients (that she “insists” on feeding her own pets). Instead, her pet foods are highly processed made with feed grade ingredients. And, her ‘new’ pet foods are not new formulas…they are disappointingly similar to many other brands of pet foods (but strikingly more expensive).

or that using natural twig sprigs will give your home a more peaceful, cozy feel
... unless the kids dragged them in. I call BS on this one, too.
 
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I can't believe this forum feels the need to argue against "using natural twig sprigs will give your home a more peaceful, cozy feel."

interesting.
 
Sasquatch Black bears using twigs to make their home more cozy

bears eating melon.png
 

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Yeah, but what if Bigfoot is traveling in UFOs? :D
He's not.

How do we know?

I'm not suggesting that Bigfoot is piloting UFOs, I'm not a total idiot.
Maybe BFs are transported in UFOs, just like big dogs are sometimes carried in police vans. Useful in establishing a perimeter...

The idea that cryptids are associated with UFOs was discussed in this book, which a very young version of myself* recommends:

2135160.jpg
Alien Animals, Janet & Colin Bord, 1980, Granada Publishing, ISBN 0236401548
(possibly viewable on the Internet Archive if you've got an account, here
https://archive.org/details/alienanimals0000bord/page/n1/mode/2up).

The authors (IIRC) proposed that lake monsters, sasquatches, phantom dogs etc. are somehow causally connected to UFOs.
I can't remember the exact connection, which is strange because I'm sure it made lots of sense when I read it.
Maybe the saucer owners don't want Bigfoot taking a dump in their own backyard dimension, or need to change the water in Nessie's bowl once in a while, something like that.

And having a big sentry for your Washington State landing site that might be mistaken for a bear is a win-win situation.
Or maybe BF is actually a bear, albeit a sentient alien bear, foretold (as is so often the case) by science fiction:
Spacepaw1988-265.jpg


*One thing I do remember about "Alien Animals" is a relevant and necessary photo of skyclad witches, looking more like healthy naked women than the stereotypical depictions of witches, a matter of interest to my innocent young self. (I think the witches were trying to make the Loch Ness Monster appear.)

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"using natural twig sprigs will give your home a more peaceful, cozy feel."
Black bears using twigs to make their home more cozy
Maybe I'm getting soft; maybe it's because it's Sunday, but bears with twigs are the epitome of peaceful and cosy.
poohsticks.jpg

Advice for hikers in the Pacific Northwest/ Arctic Circle/ Urals may vary,
but no-one carries a .357 Magnum in the Hundred Acre Wood.
 
There's an unfortunate amount of pro-gun fan-art showing Winnie the Pooh with a more modern arsenal.
If you recall, Pooh was once stuck aloft, drifting under a balloon in his search for honey, and asked Christopher Robin to shoot it with his pop gun to rescue him.

In my long-ago young childhood, a man named Arthur Milne used to read us Pooh stories. No, NOT the A.A. Milne who was the author (edit to add: although the author was still living at the time), but at the time I thought he must be.
 
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Not 100% aligned on that. We need to engage with the public to persuade the public, and that means we need to use language the way that the public understands it. Poncing around with a pedantically precise argot can be *harmful* to that end.

And yes, this might appear hypocritical coming from me, but I don't engage with the public, I only engage with my fellow elite MBians.
I do engage with the public, including family and friends, and suggest that "claims" might induce less defensiveness than "assertions".
 
Don't confuse a twig for a Genuine Official Pooh-stick!
a twig sprig, and a pooh stick is alot closer than mendel's logs.

1706504340440.png

although thin twigs can be good for adding additional texture to your home. not sure if twigs are "peaceful or cozy..although they do beat you with them in those fancy spas.
 
How do we know?

I'm not suggesting that Bigfoot is piloting UFOs, I'm not a total idiot.
Maybe BFs are transported in UFOs, just like big dogs are sometimes carried in police vans. Useful in establishing a perimeter...
If you recall, Pooh was once stuck aloft, drifting under a balloon in his search for honey, and asked Christopher Robin to shoot it with his pop gun to rescue him.
Given all the recent fuss information on certain threads here, is Pooh now an inter-dimensional being, transported by balloon UAP? Was AA Milne prescient?!
 
The earliest example of Bigfoot / Sasquatch in a UFO that I am aware of, was an "airship" sighting (1897?), where the pilot was seen sitting next to some sort of hairy creature. The idea remains popular today; I attended an Oregon MUFON meeting where the theory was brought up.
 
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