|*Photo Updated With Higher Resolution|
Click To Enlarge
[Update] Since this original posting, much has happened with this photo and with all the drama surrounding it. First came Phil Poling who made two videos about Hovey and pointing out his belief that her copyright on the photo was fraudulent since she admits not owning the photo. Then came Hovey’s filing of two DMCA takedown notices on those videos, followed by Poling’s counter filing contesting them. Poling succeeded and he videos remained on his channel. A year later, Hovey filed a Federal lawsuit against Poling for copyright infringement. Poling fought the suit and, after the Judge saw his evidence, the case against Mr. Poling was dismissed with prejudice. Hovey was then required by court agreement to remove her copyright on this photo. The exact source of the photo remains a mystery. The following is the original blog post from when Hovey first released the mysterious photo, a photo that remains to this day, a testament to the weird and ever changing world of Bigfootery. Melissa Hovey continues to run her blog ‘The Search For Bigfoot’ and Phil Poling operates the Youtube channel ‘ParaBreakdown’.
The Patterson-Gimlin footage is/was the most important piece of evidence of Bigfoot in history, until now. This latest trail cam photo of Bigfoot taken by a person who chose not to reveal himself was handed over to a blogger named Melissa Hovey. Melissa "struggled" with releasing the photo to the Bigfoot community as she made a promise to the person that he can trust her.
Is this photo real? You be the judge, because this photo will definitely be scrutinized and photo-enhanced six ways to Sunday.
Is this photo from Melissa Hovey the new Patterson-Gimlin?
It was at Bluff Creek, around 44 years ago --- on October 20, 1967 -- Yakima, Washington resident Roger Patterson, then 34, and his tracking assistant Bob Gimlin, then 36, emerged from the woods with a strip of colored 16mm film of what many have taken to be a female Bigfoot. Since then, the P/G film has been the Gold Standard in Bigfootery.
In early 2008 I was contacted via email by a person claiming to have photographed a Bigfoot. The photo is posted above.
The American Bigfoot Society holds the copyright for this image for any and all purposes. As stated in the last article, if and when the true owner of this photo steps up, we will turn the copyright over to them, and they can cover this.
Permission granted to reproduce for educational use only. Commercial copying, hiring, lending is strictly prohibited.
This image and its use on the various websites, discussion forums blogs and any other form of social media, for purposes of discussion/evaluation/research by the general public, Bigfoot Researchers and/or the media, BE ON NOTICE: the copyright MUST be maintained and placed on any images taken from this photo for any purpose and/or distributed or displayed in any manner.
This will be strictly enforced. Any questions about the use of this image should be emailed to the American Bigfoot Society at:
All website, forum, blog or any other form of social media owners, Bigfoot Researchers/enthusiasts/media and the general public, PLEASE be mindful, of potential hoaxers by maintaining the copyright on the image above. The use of this photo for hoaxing is our primary concern.
The ABS is not releasing this photo to help any potential hoaxer.
I know that everyone will have questions about this situation, but please understand there are questions that will NOT be answered about this photo and/or its owner:
1. Name of witness: This information will not be disclosed,
2. Statistical information about the witness: Age, race, or employment/occupation or marital status will not be disclosed,
3. Location of the witness: City, State, County or Address. This information will not be disclosed,
4. Number of images in this series: This will not be disclosed OR what number this photo is in the series,
5. One other researcher was sent this photo (that I know about): I will not release the name of this researcher at this time,or;
6. Any question that may compromise the witness and/or the integrity of information that could identify the witness and/or make it difficult to properly identify the witness should he/she come forward.
The American Bigfoot Society takes no particular stance on whether this is a photo of a Bigfoot or not. In other words, we do not know if this is in fact a Bigfoot or a hoax. The American Bigfoot Society has contacted and has allowed various professionals, in a number of fields, to view the photo in order to assess any information that may be contained within this photograph. While the American Bigfoot Society has the responsibility to protect their witnesses and any information we may have about them, the American Bigfoot Society also has the responsibility of exposing any photo, or evidence, which may lead to hoaxing. The American Bigfoot Society has NO information that this is in fact a hoax. We feel this photo can be released, analyzed and discussed without disclosing any information about the witness, thereby keeping our promise of confidentiality of our witnesses.
Information about the photo:
This witness asked for my (Melissa Hovey) help in seeking protection for what he/she claimed was a Bigfoot that had been coming onto his/her property.
The witness broke contact after becoming concerned for his/her privacy and the safety of the animal. He/she was concerned people would discover who he/she is and that he/she would be called, “crazy”. The witness also expressed concern that if his/her identity were discovered the alleged animal would be in danger of being killed.
The witness expressed in multiple emails that his/her interest was in protection of the alleged animal and not financial gain.
The witness stated this is one game cam photo in a series of photos.
The witness denies any form of manipulation to this photo, other than cropping the image.
Any conversations had between Melissa Hovey and the witness will not be disclosed. Even though the ABS is releasing this photo we still feel it is our responsibility to protect any information that may harm the investigation or the witness.
The photo has been examined and the ABS is in possession of these written opinions. I will do my best to have these opinions released as soon as possible. As is usually the case with opinions, photos and other miscellaneous information is sent, and can create difficulties in their uploading to the internet. My blog is a very temperamental site.
But, rest assured I have no desire to “string this out” any longer than I must – and that is only to make sure the information and the opinions given are published properly.
[Update] Here's Melissa Hovey talking about the photo on the Conundrums radio show: