Skunk ape

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
"Swamp ape" redirects here. For the Miocene primate, see Oreopithecus.
Skunk Ape
Myakka skunk ape 1.png
One of the two alleged Myaka Skunk Ape photographs taken in 2000
Grouping Cryptid
Sub grouping Hominid
Country  United States
Region Southeastern States
Habitat Swamps

The Skunk Ape, also known as the Swamp Ape, Stink Ape, Florida Bigfoot, Myakka Ape, and the Myakka Skunk Ape, is a hominid cryptid said to inhabit Florida,[1] as well as North Carolina and Arkansas, although reports from Florida are more common. It is named for its appearance and for the unpleasant odor that is said to accompany it. According to the United States National Park Service, the Skunk Ape does not exist.[2] Reports of the Skunk Ape were particularly common in the 1960s and 1970s. In the fall of 1974, numerous sightings were reported in suburban neighborhoods of Dade County, Florida, of a large, foul-smelling, hairy, ape-like creature, which ran upright on two legs.

The sightings became so common in the 1970s that many thought it was only a matter of time before a Skunk Ape was caught. So, in 1977, State Representative Paul Nuckolls (R) from Fort Myers tried to pass House bill 1664 (HB1664) which would make it a misdemeanor to “take, possess, harm or molest anthropoid or humanoid animals.” “I’d hate to see someone catch one and put it in a circus or in a zoo,” Nuckolls said. Although the “Skunk Ape Bill” made it through Committee, it was withdrawn before an official vote could be taken by the House. Undeterred, Nuckolls tried again the follow year with HB58, but it too got shot down before a vote could be taken. [3]

Myakka photographs[edit]

In 2000, two photographs were said to be of the Skunk Ape were taken by an anonymous woman and mailed to the Sarasota County, Florida, Sheriff's Department. The photographs were accompanied by a letter from the woman in which she claims to have photographed an ape in her backyard.[4] The woman wrote that on three different nights an ape had entered her backyard to take apples left on her back porch. She was convinced the ape was an escaped orangutan. The pictures have become known to Bigfoot enthusiasts as the "skunk ape photos."[5]

Loren Coleman is the primary researcher on the photographs, having helped track down the two photographs to an "Eckerd photo lab at the intersection of Fruitville and Tuttle Roads" in Sarasota, Florida.[6]

According to Chester Moore, Jr., the anonymous photographs were taken in Sarasota County near the Myakka River.[7]


  1. ^ Lennon, Vince (2003-10-22). "Is a Skunk Ape Loose in Campbell County?". WATE 6 News (WorldNow and WATE). Retrieved 2006-12-23. 
  2. ^ "The abominable swampman". BBC News. 1998-03-06. Retrieved 2006-12-23. 
  3. ^ Template:Cite web url=
  4. ^ Coleman, Loren. "Myaka Skunk Ape 'Letter'". The Cryptozoologist. International Cryptozoology Museum. Retrieved 2013-03-22. 
  5. ^ Newton, Michael (2005). "Skunk Ape". Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology: A Global Guide to Hidden Animals and Their Pursuers. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc. pp. 430–431. ISBN 978-0-786-42036-0. 
  6. ^ Coleman, Loren (2001). "The Myakka 'Skunk Ape' Photographs". The Cryptozoologist. International Cryptozoology Museum. Retrieved 2013-03-22. 
  7. ^ Moore, Jr., Chester (2001-02-22). "X-Files: Alleged 'skunk ape' baffles experts". The Orange Leader (Orange, Texas: Eric Bauer). Retrieved 2013-04-04.  Article reprinted courtesy of the International Cryptozoology Museum.

Further reading[edit]

  • Newton, Michael (2005). "Skunk Ape". Encyclopedia of Cryptozoology: A Global Guide to Hidden Animals and Their Pursuers. Jefferson: McFarland & Company, Inc. ISBN 978-0-786-42036-0. 
  • Coleman, Loren (2003). Bigfoot!: The True Story of Apes in America. New York: Paraview Pocket Books. ISBN 978-0-743-46975-3.  Contains primary historical material on apes, Skunk Apes, and the Myakka photographs.
  • Coleman, Loren; Huyghe, Patrick (1999). The Field Guide to Bigfoot, Yeti, and Other Mystery Primates Worldwide. New York: Avon Books. ISBN 978-0-380-80263-0.