DHS Squirrel

First Large Academic Study of Bigfoot/Sasquatch Evidence


Article by Matt Moneymaker, President of the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization

This is definitely a HISTORIC MILESTONE for Bigfoot/ Sasquatch research.

It will be the first large university study of Bigfoot/Sasquatch evidence.

This is a long article, with links to some connected articles, but it is all essential if you want to be informed on the subject of DNA analysis applied to Bigfoot evidence. You must understand the history first.

NOTE: There is an important update below this first article.


Twenty years ago Jane Goodall stated publicly that she believes Sasquatches exist, and that DNA will prove their existence so it will not be necessary to kill one in order to prove their existence.

She was right, and still is. The problem with that, at the time:

No respected research institution that performed DNA analysis at the time wanted any connection with the words Bigfoot or Sasquatch. It was too controversial.

Twenty years later, a respected state university in the eastern United States will be the first one to conduct a long term, systematic study of Bigfoot/sasquatch evidence in all its forms, especially DNA from hairs.

This is the first time this has happened!!

The study will take place at North Carolina State University.

Among other things, the university will perform DNA analysis on hair samples already collected, including some which are suspected of being from Sasquatches but were never offered to previous DNA efforts (all 2 of them: Sykes and Ketchum) because those efforts were not legitimate academic/scientific studies.


The earliset attempt to have possible Bigfoot hairs analyzed for DNA:

Way back in the 1970's, decades before the Sykes and Ketchum DNA efforts, prominent Bigfoot researcher Peter Byrne sent a hair sample to the FBI for identification -- seemingly the best place, at the time, to identify a species from a hair sample. DNA analysis was very new in that era but they had the ability.

The FBI did Byrne a real solid favor ... 43 years after sending the hair sample, eh hem ... letting him know their results: It was just deer hair.

Gee, thanks.

For more info on the FBI case, see:


The next foray was "Bigfoot Genome Project" led by Melba Ketchum in Texas.

Melba Ketchum's effort was not connected to any university.  It was basically a hustle of wealthy sponsors. Both the results and the study itself have been debunked by actual scientists in an open-letter peer review process. Scientists were able to do that simply by examining the long delayed publication of the Bigfoot Genome Project's conclusions and methods.

For more on that, see:



The more recent attempt was led by the late Bryan Sykes, a world famous Emeritus Professor of human genetics at the University of Oxford. He was paid to oversee an effort for a television program commissioned by the BBC.  He was definitely a step up from Melbe Ketchum in terms of scientific talent.

Sykes was very respected for his genetics investigations but this "study" for the BBC was not normal scientific study. Sykes himself expressed misgivings about it afterward. He noted the lack of time and budget for a more thorough investigation.

It was a limited effort for a TV program, and the results were manipulated for cost reduction and timeline adjustment to work with the TV production schedule and its pre-determined script.

For more background on that, see:



As a skeptic of the professional skeptics, the lead of this DNA project got the ball rolling some years ago to organize an academic effort to look for DNA in possible Bigfoot hair samples.

He has now spoken with most of the prominent Bigfoot researchers who are still alive and in possession of hair samples that might contain DNA.

The project is not yet ready to receive hair samples but they would like to know what is out there in personal archives.

This effort already has a wide array of top level scientists from various fields quietly participating, and willing to publish any results they determine from the evidence.

They will receive samples but there will be protocols involved. They first want information about the hair samples before agreeing to receive them, so that interviews can occur and samples can be prioritized for analysis.

The most important and laudable aspect of this effort: It is not a short term project. It will go on for a long time, coordinated at this progressive (scientifically) university, with excellent top-level preparedness for dealing with interference.


Years ago the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Investigation and Identification put together a very useful web page showing microscope images of hairs of common mammal species. Thankfully, most of this web page still works properly and will continue to be work for a long time as a reference for citizen scientists who come across hair samples in the wild.


More refence material for hair analysis:

Twenty years ago the supreme authority on the topic of hair identification was a man named Doug Deedrick. He was (and may still be) the FBI's top hair identification guy at Quantico. A few of his articles are linked below. Deedrick's articles will make you much more knowledgeable on the subject of hair identification.


  2000 Deedrick Article: Hairs, Fibers, Crime and Evidence

2004 Deedrick Article: Microscopy of Hair



This first big DNA study is happening at North Carolina State University. The organizer of the effort is Darby Orcutt. He has already been featured in many Bigfoot-oriented podcasts.

I have been calling it the "Bigfoot Hair DNA Project" but formally it is (and needs to be, wisely, for political reasons) the University's "DNA Study of Anomalous Biological Samples" ... among a wider program to collect evidence and data on several major anomalies that have long been marginalized.

ONE the major anomalies they are keenly interested in is the Bigfoot mystery, not surprisingly. Their official position is that modern skeptical explanations for all the evidence (much of it physical) for Bigfoots is "unsatisfying" to the University.

This day has been a long time coming.

If you know someone who has good reason to believe they are in possession of Bigfoot/Sasquatch hairs, then Darby and team at NC State want to know about it. They would like to examine a good portion (always retain some of the hairs) of good samples.

If you merely have a clump of hairs you cannot identify, odds are they are not Bigfoot/Sasquatch hairs. You could send photos of unknown hairs (with a dime next to them for scale) to either the BFRO or other animal hair experts to see if they appear to match hairs of known animals.

Whereas if there has been indications of Sasquatches in the area (footprints, howls, sightings) where hairs were found then odds are much better. There should be some correlation.

The University needs to strike a balance between total openness for hair samples, and the need to prevent enthusiastic people from sending in any animal hairs they find in the woods.

Here is the URL for the hair sample intake form:

Do not be thrown off by the request on the web page for donation support. He has to include that. The project is supported already but donations will allow them to process more samples faster, among other things.

They are currently developing a convenient way to keep hair sample providers updated on the results of examinations of their sample(s).

They will be prioritizing every hair sample they receive, so you must be patient. You will not be able to plan for when your results are due, and you definitely should not bug them about it. They will not give a completion date in advance.

You can only bank on this:

If Darby agrees to accept your hair samples in the first place, based on what they see in the intake form, etc., and/or the followup phone interview, then you can be sure they will provide updates about their examination of that sample so you do not need to keep checking with them.

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