Richard Freeman reports on evidence of the elusive orang pendek

Have we found evidence of the elusive orang pendek? | Richard Freeman | Science | guardian.co.uk.

Richard Freeman describes the evidence that was collected on a recent expedition, the largest of its kind, to Sumatra to search for the orang pendek, an animal suspected to exist but never confirmed.

On one trek, on the far side of the lake – an area with damper, thicker jungle – Sahar’s brother John found a print next to a rotting log that had been ripped apart. Orang pendek have been seen feeding off grubs in such logs. The print was cast by Andrew Sanderson using quick-drying dental plaster. Close by, Sahar found a number of hairs, which Adam preserved in ethanol for later laboratory analysis.

The hairs will be sent off for DNA testing to Professor Bryan Sykes, Professor Todd Disotell, Dr Tom Gilbert and Lars Thomas, but we won’t get the results for a few months. Copies of the cast will be sent to leading primatologists.

Source: Ghost Theory

This is an update to the story of the expedition that was featured in the Guardian. While they didn’t bring back a body, the project appeared well-run and carefully managed. We remain hopeful that some positive evidence comes from this collection but still, no body and that’s disappointing.

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  1 comment for “Richard Freeman reports on evidence of the elusive orang pendek

  1. Massachusetts
    October 18, 2011 at 6:37 PM

    Could it be a surviving Homo Floresiensis? Or perhaps a mis-identified Orangutan? Yeah, probably the latter, but still…the mind boggles!

    If there is a relict hominid out there, that area is more likely than any to have one. On the other hand…

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