Gigantopithecus Blacki and the Bigfoot-Giganto Hypothesis
What Is the Bigfoot-Giganto Hypothesis?
The Bigfoot-Giganto Hypothesis is a compelling idea that offers an explanation for one of the most vexing questions surrounding the Sasquatch phenomenon: Where did Bigfoot come from?
Even rare and mysterious creatures aren't outside of the laws of nature. If Bigfoot exists, it must have a history and lineage just like any other species. For this we look to an ancient creature called Gigantopithecus Blacki.
Could Gigantopithecus be an ancient Bigfoot ancestor?
Gigantopithecus: The Real Bigfoot
Ol’ Charles Darwin was really onto something when he thought up the whole evolution thing. Looking around in nature, it seems to make a lot of sense.
Species evolve through natural selection, changing through time, adapting and improving, or failing to adapt and going extinct.
But what about a creature we know less about? What about a cryptid like Bigfoot? There are no great apes in North America, nor any record of hominid species before humans arrived. If Darwin is right, where did Bigfoot come from?
If you believe in both Bigfoot (not everyone does) and Charles Darwin (not everyone does) you have to think there is an evolutionary explanation for how Bigfoot came to tromping around the woods of North America. Bigfoot-Giganto Theory is a hypothesis that explains exactly that.
Discovery of Gigantopithecus Blacki
Way back in 1935 an anthropologist named Ralph von Koenigswald discovered remnants of a genus of giant prehistoric ape in a Hong Kong apothecary shop. After a lot of head scratching and hypothesizing, this amazing creature came to be called Gigantopithecus.
The biggest species, Gigantopithecus Blacki, stood ten feet tall and is the largest ape ever known to science. Paleontologists believe Gigantopithecus inhabited areas of Asia and went extinct around 300,000 years ago.
Relatively few Gigantopithecus fossils have been found; what we know of the creature has been extrapolated from fossilized teeth and jaw bones. Based on educated assumptions, it’s understood that Gigantopithecus was a ground-dwelling animal who survived on vegetation, possibly bamboo.
Most researchers believe Gigantopithecus walked on all fours like an orangutan, its closest living relative. However, some hold to the idea that Gigantopithecus may have been bipedal.
Since there are no fossils of hip or leg bones on record, it is impossible to know for certain.
Several theories exist to explain the extinction of Gigantopithecus, ranging from the inadequacy of its diet, to climate change, to competition with early humans, or even predation by humans.
However, one interesting theory may not only explain what happened to Gigantopithecus, but solve another of the world’s great mysteries: It evolved.
Gigantopithecus evolved into what we know of as Bigfoot in North America, and the Yeti in Asia.
During the Pleistocene Epoch sea levels were lower due to ice-age conditions and massive glaciers. This allowed a land bridge to form between Asia and North America: the Bering Land Bridge.
Early humans, as well as other animal species, crossed this land bridge some 15,000-30,000 years ago, migrating from Asia to North America.
Could Gigantopithecus have made this trek as well?
Is Gigantopithecus Bigfoot?
Some believe that living relatives of Gigantopithecus Blacki could account for sightings of North America’s Bigfoot.
Many qualities seem identical. Both are large primates, both (possibly) bipedal. It’s an easy jump in logic, given the similarities between the creatures.
What assumptions need to become fact for this hypothesis to work? For one thing, there is a huge gap in time between the assumed die off of Gigantopithecus and the estimated window when the Bering Land Bridge would have been negotiable.
Gigantopithecus would have had to survive this time period, for which we have no fossil record. Bigfoot-Giganto advocates argue that this is reasonable, considering the relatively minute amount of evidence that presently exists for an animal that lived for hundreds of thousands of years.
Thus, there may well be Gigantopithecus remains yet to be discovered in North America.
Gigantopithecus would have also had to change its diet to exist in its new world. Would it be possible for a species dedicated to a specific diet and environment to adapt to such dramatic changes?
Numerous species that traversed the Bering Land Bridge are shown to have adapted significantly to their new environments. And, if we assume Gigantopithecus was a highly intelligent creature, we can compare its circumstance to that of one of its relatives: Homo sapiens.
Another Explanation for Bigfoot
Gigantopithecus may present another interesting idea of the origins of Bigfoot: Ancient peoples traveling tens of thousands of years ago may have encountered species of giant apes and perpetuated those stories by word of mouth.
In other words, could the legend of Bigfoot simply be a case of campfire stories passed on for generations?
Native Americans have known of this creature’s existence long before Europeans ever came to America, but are not known to have used written language before European contact. Many times, Native American stories and traditions were passed on by spoken word.
Is it possible that ancient stories of Gigantopithecus, remembered over thousands of years, were carried on in the folklore of native people and account for stories of Bigfoot in the forest?
An interesting idea that begs a few questions. Did ancient native people understand the idea that an animal could go extinct? Or, fully grasp just how different the lands of North America were compared to where their ancestors lived thousands of years earlier?
To them, since the stories remained the same, there was still a large ape out there somewhere in the forest, even though Gigantopithecus may have gone extinct long ago and lived in a land far away.
Of course this does nothing to explain Bigfoot sightings in recent times.
Is Gigantopithecus Still Among Us Today?
Did Gigantopithecus follow early humans across the Bering Land Bridge, evolve into the Yeti in the old world and Bigfoot in the new? Certainly it's possible, but the theory does have many holes.
Even granting the behavioral adaptations Gigantopithecus would have had to make to accomplish this migration, it seems unlikely that such a large creature could go undetected for so long.
Then again, as technology improves and the internet spreads information around the world faster each day, it seems more and more apparent that Bigfoot isn’t evading detection at all. He’s sighted in just about every state by dozens if not hundreds of people every year, and those are just the accounts of people who are willing to talk about them.
As a wise man in a basement office once said: The truth is out there. Perhaps an ancient, long-thought-extinct ape lurks in the depths of the North American forests. Until science has a body the real story of Bigfoot will be left to speculation, theory, and rambling internet articles like this one.