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Hobbits and Yeti

Making news around the world is the discovery of a new member of the human family tree, Homo floresiensis – a hominid only 1-metre in stature that lived just 18,000 years ago. Nicknamed ‘hobbits’ due to their tiny size, remains of the hominid have been found on the Indonesian island of Flores. A Nature special takes a detailed look at the find, which is destined to be a paradigm-changing event in anthropology.

Included in the Nature special is an interesting opinion piece which says the new find brings cryptozoology back from the scientific wilderness. It argues that, considering how recently the hominid was around (and that it may still be around for all we know), it brings more credibility to searches for creatures like the Yeti and the Orang Pendek of Sumatra. I think the article is spot on with this observation, and cryptozoologists will find plenty of ammunition in this latest find to back the underlying philosophy behind their research.

Editor
  1. The smallest discovery is often the most important
    This is an amazing discovery (that they kept secret for a year!).

    The Pygmies of Africa, the Bushmen of the Kalahari Desert, some tribes in the Amazon Rainforest … these are examples of small-statured people alive today. Homo floresiensis is even smaller than these groups of people.

    My question — if a race of humans lived close to the end of the Last Ice Age 18’000 years ago, then it is entirely possible for a race of [i]giants[/i]. Weren’t giant skeletons over 2 meters tall found on islands near Papua New Guinea?

    Rick

    1. Giants…
      Giant skeletons were found not only in Papua New Guinea, but also in the US, asia, neas east….. seems like there were quite a bunch of gentle giants around. Even the bible speaks of them…

      JBro

  2. Attitudes towards cryptozoology
    The discovery of the “hobbit” is indeed a paradigm-shifting discovery.

    It’s also great to see the scientific/academic community embracing the possibility that they “might not quite know everything”! How refreshing.

    I find it a great shame, however, that they couldn’t keep an open mind about reported sightings of other “unknown” (and therefore non-existent, in their minds) hominids (and other species, for that matter).

    As the saying goes: “An absence of evidence does not indicate evidence of absence.

    Why can’t the scientists and so-called experts actually set out to prove or disprove whether local myths and legends are based on any element of truth, rather than sitting in their ivory towers telling the masses that what they dictate is the absolute truth.

    Hopefully, this event will serve to change a few attitudes in the scientific and academic communities, and maybe we’ll get a few “official” expeditions to the Himalayas and Borneo to actually search for possible living examples of other hominid species.

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