Data and Statistical Analysis
I incorporate a multidisciplinary approach to bigfoot research, drawing upon three core areas—field research, scholarly research, and data analysis. Bigfoot, needless to say, is a complex topic, with many unknowns. It is these unknowns that demand the most thorough approach available.
“The author takes an anthropologist’s approach, studying many different aspects of the creature known as “Bigfoot”…Wilson presents us with a plethora of statistical evidence…a nice, organized analysis of this elusive cryptid…intellectual rather than sensational.” —San Francisco Book Review
“Who does not love a good Bigfoot tale? The large, hairy creature has captured the imagination of people all over the world…T. A. Wilson goes one step further and places Bigfoot in the context of evolution of hominids…A mix between speculation of a popular myth and science, this book aims to connect the dots and explain this cultural phenomenon in terms of data and evolutionary biology.” —About.com Science
“I can also happily say that I picked up a couple things from the book that I hadn’t considered before. Wilson bravely speculates on what he thinks bigfoots are and can do, which makes for a much bolder book than the compendium of sighting reports that most bigfoot books end up being…the text is information rich…For those scientifically-minded bigfooters that use facts and data to drive their opinions about sasquatches, I strongly recommend reading this book. ” –Cliff Barackman, Finding Bigfoot
(Cliff Barackman and I have come to different conclusions about the credibility of the Paul Freeman bigfoot hand casts (and others), interpretations thereof, and some implications of bigfoot hand anatomy, which I feel lends itself to a healthy debate, much needed in the field of bigfoot research. Let readers weigh the evidence for themselves is always my stance.)
I have posted a portion of the data from my book Bigfoot in Evolutionary Perspective on this site. A subset of this data was obtained from John Green’s database (Sasquatchdatabase.com), open and freely available to anyone online, so I think it only reasonable that I should make any conclusions derived from this data available as well, together with some of the more straightforward charts and tables used to illustrate it. I have also added tables and charts based on my own research. Of course, I have conducted in-depth analysis of these topics in my book, and I am only briefly touching upon these here.
While bigfoot researchers have been accused of not sharing their data in the past, and the field not advancing as a result, this is almost certainly a misnomer, whatever the temperaments of individual researchers may be. Very few researchers have anything but the most cursory of data to share and those that do oftentimes work with misapplied models, like scenarios where Giganto is the evolutionary forebear of bigfoot for example, which, by definition, can yield no data or incorrect data. Data sets like the hand casts of Ivan Marx or Paul Freeman will yield data, but what good are these if the data sets are themselves corrupt, the products of known hoaxers? Observations of hoaxers, which conform to a serial pattern of repeat encounters, can also yield data, but these must be weeded out, not elevated to play a disproportionate role in drawing conclusions about bigfoot anatomy and behavior.
In the final analysis, when field research, scholarly research, and data analysis are combined, a remarkably consistent evolutionary and ecological picture of bigfoot, our hominin cousin, emerges, one that is consistent with bigfoot being placed in the hominin lineage. Scenarios of convergent evolution, such as bigfoot being a descendent of Gigantopithecus, or some other unknown Asian ape are implausible and contradict solid anthropological/evolutionary principles.
Copyright T. A. Wilson 2016. All rights reserved.