Nostalgia Abominable fakes! new research shows that of nine 'yeti remains' collected from the himalayas and tibetan plateau, eight were bears and one was a dog.
ANDY RICHARDS email@example.com ALLEGED Yeti remains from museums and private collections are abominable fakes, a study has found. Eight specimens, including bones, teeth, skin, hair and faecal samples, were found to come from bears and one belonged to dog.
All the remnants, collected from the Himalayas and Tibetan Plateau, were claimed to be evidence for the existence of the Abominable Snowman or Yeti.
DNA tests proved they were nothing to do with hairy humanlike creatures living in remote regions of Nepal and Tibet. Lead scientist Dr Charlotte Lindqvist, from the University of Buffalo, in the US, said: "Our findings strongly suggest that the biological underpinnings of the Yeti legend can be found in local bears, and our study demonstrates that genetics should be able to unravel other, similar mysteries."
She added: "Clearly, a big part of the Yeti legend has to do with bears."
The study was the "most rigorous analysis to date" of samples linked to mythical "hominid-like" creatures, said the researchers writing in the journal Proceedings Of The Royal Society B. The Yeti legend is part of Nepalese folklore dating back many hundreds of years.
Stories of the Abominable Snowman first emerged in Western popular culture in the 19th century. Numerous sightings of the creature and its footprints have allegedly been made, supported by blurry photos and shaky video footage.
But over the years no one has come forward with any definitive evidence that the Yeti is real.
The new research showed that Asian black bears, Himalayan brown bears and Tibetan brown bears had all contributed to the myth.
One of the samples investigated by Dr Lindqvist's team was a monastic relic consisting of a preserved scrap of skin from the hand or paw of a Yeti.
Another was a thigh bone fragment from the decayed body of one of the creatures found in a Tibetan cave.
The skin sample turned out to be from an Asian black bear and the bone from a Tibetan brown bear.
The name "Abominable Snowman" was coined in 1921, the same year Lieutenant-Colonel Charles Howard-Bury led the 1921 British Mount Everest reconnaissance expedition which he chronicled in Mount Everest The Reconnaissance, 1921.
In the book, Howard-Bury includes an account of crossing the Lhakpa La at 21,000 ft where he found footprints that he believed "were probably caused by a large 'loping' grey wolf, which in the soft snow formed double tracks rather like those of a bare-footed man".
The use of "Abominable Snowman" began when Henry Newman, a longtime contributor to The Statesman in Calcutta, interviewed the porters of the Everest Reconnaissance expedition on their return to Darjeeling and mistranslated what they said, perhaps out of artistic licence.
A Himalayan black bear and a thigh bone alleged to have come from the decayed body of a yeti found in a cave in Tibet, which DNA tests showed actually belonged to a bear