A British scientist believes he may have solved the mystery of the Yeti, the fabled bipedal creature that roams the Himalayas. According to an October 17 report by The Telegraph, Professor Bryan Sykes, a geneticist from the University of Oxford has found a match to DNA samples of the elusive creature.
Two modern day samples thought to belong to Yeti - one from the mummified remains of an animal shot by a hunter approximately 40 years ago, and another from a hair discovered in the bamboo forest 10 years ago – are a perfect match to the DNA of an ancient polar bear that roamed the earth 40,000 years ago.
When compared against the DNA from a jawbone of an ancient polar bear found in Svalbard, Norway, Sykes found a 100 percent match.
Although Sykes says he doesn’t believe ancient polar bears continue to roam the Himalayas, he does think that the Yeti may represent a cross between polar bears and brown bears. This new hybrid could exhibit very different behaviors from its ancestors, including becoming bipedal.
Like its American cousin, Bigfoot, Yeti reportedly walks upright and is covered with hair. Although stories of encounters with the creature have existed for hundreds of years, until now no DNA evidence has proved its existence.
Professor Sykes' research has been submitted to a peer reviewed science journal and will be featured in “The Bigfoot Files” a documentary series on the elusive creatures. The series will premiere on Sunday on Britain’s Channel 4, reports NBC NEWS.