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Media Article # 486
Wednesday, February 22, 2006
[Investigators in Kota Tinggi]
By R. Sittamparam
New Straits Times
‘Creature prefers cool spot’
KOTA TINGGI, Feb 22: The search for the elusive Bigfoot continues to throw up bits and pieces of the jigsaw puzzle.
In the latest evidence of the creature’s presence at Kampung Lukut Cina in Panti, a local scientist has found two piles of tree branches and saplings which showed no sign of having been cut.
Bio-diversity researcher Vincent Chow said it appeared that something powerful had pulled them down from a height of about 3m besides uprooting the 3cm thick saplings.
Chow said it was interesting to note that the creature had chosen a cool and shady area for the pile.
MASSIVE: Documentary film-maker Joshua Gates (left) and his associate, Neil Mandt casting the print to be brought home as proof.
The area is where a group comprising an American filming crew from Mandt Bros. Productions, members of Singapore Paranormal Investigators (SPI), filming crew from Makim Abad Sdn Bhd and the Southeast Asia correspondent for The Independent of London found fresh footprints on Monday.
One of the 60cm by 30cm footprints about 10cm deep was so clear the group managed to make plaster casts of it.
The find will be seen on Destination Truth, a television programme to be shown on NBC Universal’s Sci-Fi Network in the United States and NTV7’s Seekers series.
Jan McGirk, the correspondent for The Independent, reported seeing broken tree branches more than 3m above the spot where the deep footprint was found.
She said it appeared that the creature had grabbed the branches for support when it lost balance as its left heel sunk into a muddy puddle adding that a stick was also seen snapped beneath one of its toe depressions.
"Australian Tony Burke, who was with the SPI, estimated that to make such a print, an animal would have to weigh at least 240kg," she added.
Meanwhile, Chow said the cleared areas were less than 20 metres from the road leading to rubber and oil palm smallholdings at the hills of Panti.
"The clearing work seems to have been done by some intelligent being but for what purpose, we don’t know yet.
"We know of wild pigs making a nest to deliver their young but this is different and looks more like a resting place."
Chow said the only explanation was that the spot must have been a traditional rest stop for the creature which it instinctively returns to, despite the area now being encroached by human habitations.
"This find is important as at this stage of our Bigfoot search, we need to collect information on the habits of the creature.
"Based on the information we have accumulated so far, there is hope we will soon get a good chance to actually sight the creature and photograph it."
Experts to analyse Bigfoot’s footprint
KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 22: A plaster cast of the "Bigfoot" footprint will be sent to the forensics department to be analysed by experts.
The footprint will be examined for the creature’s DNA.
It was discovered by a 16-member international team of paranormal researchers, bio-diversity experts and journalists at the Bukit Lintang rainforest.
"There were other footprints in the area, but most were washed away by the rainfall earlier in the day," said paranormal researcher Syed Abdullah Syed Hussein Al-Attas.
He was speaking to reporters at a Press conference at the headquarters of Seekers, a popular show on paranormal activities.
"To us, the prints seemed to show that the creature was walking stealthily in search of food.
"There were small broken branches as high as five metres from the ground," he said adding that the print measured 60cm by 30cm.
Joshua Gates, 28, who found the print, said ground conditions surrounding the footprint had helped preserve it.
"It was not covered in as much leaves as the other prints that we found. The soil was soft enough for the depression of the footprint to be very distinctive.
"We couldn’t make casts of the other prints as we did not bring enough plaster with us."
Gates, a documentary film-maker from USA, said the footprints led to a deeper and rougher section of the jungle.
"We could not follow the trail as it was getting dark, even though we were tempted to. We were actually about to leave the place when I spotted the broken branches and the footprint."
The team strongly feels that the creatures were beginning to emerge from the jungle because of the thinning vegetation and the intermittent rainfall which may have disturbed its habitat.
Syed Abdullah said the cast would be handed over to the Johor Government after it had been thoroughly analysed by the forensics team.
"We understand that this belongs to the Johor State Government, and we will hand it over as soon as the forensics team is done with it."
Other members of the team were allowed to make a copy of the cast.
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