Home Page Science Frontiers

No. 110: Mar-Apr 1997

Issue Contents

Other pages

Other Interesting Sites











Is oliver a "humanzee"?

Oliver: male, 30ish, very hairy, height 1.2 meters, weight 50 kilos, erect posture, unusual ears, offensive odor. Oscar always walks on two feet, uses a human toilet (which he flushes), can mix drinks, and enjoys a cup of coffee and a nightcap. Chimps ignore him; humans wonder what he is.

Superficially, Oscar is definitely chimp-like; but shave his head and he becomes eerily human. Although Oscar was widely exhibited in the 1970s, his fame diminished in the 1980s. But now, scientists want to count his chromosomes and find out what he really is. One suggestion is a cross between a chimpanzee and a bonobo (a "pygmy chimpanzee"). Or how about a chimp-human hybrid? There have been dark rumors of hushhush experiments in China, Italy, and the U.S.

We'll let you know what the geneticists conclude -- unless there is more "hush-hush."

(Holden, Constance; "'Mutant' Chimp Gets a Gene Check," Science, 274:727, 1996. Also: Anonymous; "Oo-be-doo, I Want to Be Like You," Fortean Times, no. 95, p. 15, February 1997.)

From Science Frontiers #110, MAR-APR 1997. 1997-2000 William R. Corliss

Science Frontiers Sourcebook Project Reviewed in:


  • "A sourcebook of unexplained phenomena is therefore a valuable addition to a collection of scientific literature. William R. Corliss has provided this in the past with his source books of scientific anomalies in several subjects, and now he has provided it for astronomy. He has done an excellent job of collecting and editing a large amount of material, taken in part from scientific journals and in part from scientific reporting in the popular or semi-scientific press." -- "The Mysterious Universe: A Handbook of Astronomical Anomalies", reviwed by Thomas Gold, Cornell University, in Icarus, vol.41, 1980

  • "An interesting, systematic presentation of unusual weather [..] This book is recommended for a general audience" --"Corliss, William R., Tornados, Dark Days, Anomalous Precipitation, and Related Weather Phenomena, Sourcebook Project, 1983.", revieweed in Choice, September 1983
  • "..the science is necessarily somewhat speculative, but Corliss's symthesis is based on reputable sources." -- "Corliss, William R. (Compiler). Lightning, Auroras, Nocturnal Lights, and Related Luminous Phenomena" reviwed by Joseph M. Moran, Univ. of Wisconsin in Science Books and Films, Sep/Oct 1983

  • "Before opening the book, I set certain standards that a volume which treads into dangerous grounds grounds like this must meet. The author scrupulously met, or even exceeded those standards. Each phenomenon is exhaustively documented, with references to scientific journals [..] and extensive quotations" -- "Book Review: The moon and planets: a catalog of astronomical anomalies", The Sourcebook Project, 1985., Corliss, W. R., Journal of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Vol. 81, no. 1 (1987), p. 24., 02/1987