DNA Studies: The Search for Sasquatch Continues with eDNA
DNA is one of the great scientific ways that we learn about the organisms surrounding us. It helps us take a look under the hood, if you will, of everything that lives around us and understand each creature a little bit more.
So, it’s no surprise that proving the existence of Sasquatch would be significantly easier if we could get our hands on a piece of truly scientific evidence like DNA. But, thus far, we’ve had no luck and DNA studies have been moot when it comes to proving the existence of these mysterious creatures.
But the discovery and pursuit of environmental DNA has Sasquatch searchers excited. What if we could prove the existence of a creature, not by encountering them and taking a cheek swab or pulling out a lock of hair, but by testing the environment it lives in?
It would be monumental to the Sasquatch community and bring us one step closer to these creatures. One large step, one that we’ve never had access to before.
What is eDNA?
We know that DNA—deoxyribonucleic acid—is critical for the existence of any organism. It’s essentially a blueprint that carries the “genetic instructions for the development, functioning, growth and reproduction of all known organisms.” But to properly study the DNA of an organism, you for example, you need to have an actual sample.
Or, you did.
Environmental DNA or eDNA is the collection of materials from environmental sources—things like soil, snow, sea water, and, in some cases, air—to extract information about an organism without actually having to take it from them directly.
It works because as we live our day-to-day lives, we spew tiny pieces of ourselves into our surroundings that contain our DNA. Therefore, when we test the things around us, we should be able to get tiny little pieces of evidence that tell us about the organisms that interact with that environment.
eDNA and Sasquatch
Before everyone gets too excited, we haven’t had any luck with finding Sasquatch through eDNA yet. But Byran Sykes one of the leading researchers in this area has learned a lot about the evolution of other creatures.
In attempting to uncover information about the famed Yeti, Sasquatch’s Himalyan cousin, he was able to find DNA related to “an animal related to Paleolithic polar bears.” He’s also tested hair suspected of being from Sasquatch, but unfortunately found it to be attributed to other animals, namely in the bear family.
But the absence of evidence isn’t evidence of absence, as they say. And it’s entirely possible that one of these days we’ll manage to come across DNA in an environment that leads us to Sasquatch. Until then, we can keep searching for these elusive creatures.
We’re bound to find one soon enough, right?
If you’re headed out to do your own search for Sasquatch, you’ll definitely want to make sure you bring your hiking supplies, and don’t forget about your Sasquatch camping mug. And, if you find anything out there in the woods, make sure to let us know.
What do you think about eDNA? Do you think it could help us get closer to the answer we’re all seeking?
Please let us know in the comments below or email us, we'd love to hear from you!
By Tae Haahr
Research Writer, Sasquatch Syndicate Inc.