There have been sightings of a creature in the mountainous forest area’s on the island of Sumatra and in Southeast Asia. This creature is a cryptozoological animal known as “Orang Pendek“. The name Orang Pendek is Indonesian and translates to “short person”. This creature has been seen and sightings documented for over a hundred years now by everyone from colonist , local villagers , and ever some western scientist. Some call the creatures the “Forest Hobbits of Sumatra“.
Orang Pendek has yet to have any authoritative accounts as to its behavior and exact physical characteristics. However there have been many witness reports which show some consistent characteristics to go by. The creature is said to be approx. 31-59 inches tall and is covered in short grey to brown fur and is considered to be a ground dwelling bipedal primate. The Orang Pendek is said to have very broad shoulders , powerfull arms, and a huge chest and upper abdomen. Its said the creature’s legs are short and slim and the feet small and are usually turned out at a 45 degree angle , its head has a distinct crest similar to a gorilla but it has a bony ridge above its wide set eyes and a nose that is very humanoid like. The creature is said to have extreme sheer physical power. Its also reported that the creature when frightened will expose its teeth which have oddly broad incisors and long canine type teeth.
Orang Pendek has often been seen along the edge of forest which are located along farm land and planted fields. The creature is often said to raid crops of corn , potatoes , and some fruit. Some locals claim the creature often seeks out ginger roots which is known locally as “pahur” and also river crabs , insects in rotting logs , and young shoots.
Reports and sightings of the creature have been reported by various groups over the years. Reports from as far back as the early 1900’s from Dutch colonists were documented. There have also been many many reports and sightings documented from the local tribes people the “Suku Anak Dalam” also know as “Orang Kubu” who have lived in the forest of Kerinci and surrounding area’s. These people have reported the Orang Pendek as being part of the forest and their world for centuries. The local villagers of Indonesia have also been a large source of reports and sightings of the creature over the years.
There are some western researchers who are attempting to study the Orang Pendek and attempting to find proof of its existence. There have been many foot print cast and hair samples collected by scientist in the area. Three British men found foot prints and hairs possibly linked to Orang Pendek while traveling through the forest of Kerinci. These foot cast and hairs were studied by scientist from 2001-2003 and a primate biologist from the University of Cambridge compared the cast to those from all other known primates and local animals and had the conclusion that the cast of the footprints taken were ape like with some unique blends and features of other animals. Further examination of the print found that it did not match any other known primate species and it was concluded that these prints pointed toward there being a very large yet unknown primate in the Sumatra forests. The hair samples found were examined by a hair analysis expert and were also found that they also originated from a yet unknown species of primate. National Geographic has been funding a multi-year project attempting to use camera traps to obtain photo evidence of Orang Pendek and has been ongoing since 2005.
There are many varying opinions as to what Orang Pendek actually is and if it even actually exist. Some say that these sighting and reports are simply cases of mistaken identity and likely mis identification of local animals like the sun bear. Others in the field of cryptozoology think that Orang Pendek could possibly be some form of undocumented primate or even a surviving hominid which would be a “missing link” of human evolution yet to be discovered.
The Search Continues – CryPtoReports