The Yeren (Chinese: 野人; pinyin: yěrén; lit. ‘wild-man’), in Chinese folklore, is a purported ape-like creature said to reside in the remote mountainous forested regions of western Hubei, China. Supposed evidence of the creature’s existence is based on anecdotal accounts and alleged footprints, hair, and feces. Much like other creatures of similar descriptions in Asia such as the Yeti and Almas; and North America’s Bigfoot, mainstream science largely discredits the existence of such an animal, attributing it to a combination of hoax, misidentification, and folklore. Nevertheless, there are several notable researchers who have spent their careers investigating the subject of the Yeren.
The Yeren is thought to be a large, muscular, bipedal ape-like creature that walks upright. It is covered in shaggy black hair and has large canine teeth. The hands are much like humans with 5 fingers. Eyewitnesses have even described the creature as having a pungent smell and making loud howling noises not unlike that of a wolf. The face is described as being flat with canine like nose, flat forehead and heavy brow bones. Yeren sightings seem to occur primarily in remote areas such as along the Yangtze River and in mountainous terrain such as the Qionglai mountain range that runs through Sichuan and into Hubei provinces of China. In this area, it is believed, as in other mountainous regions around the globe that these creatures tend to reside. Sightings are also common along the Great Wall of China. In any areas where sightings have occurred, a variety of legends have come to be associated with the Yeren.
The creature is said to live in the remote Qionglai Mountains in western China, and makes it's home in the deepest valleys. The mountains are frequented by other supernatural creatures such as yeti, almas (Almas may be related to Almas-eurasia), long-haired devils, black witches and many other phenomena that are usually a part of Eastern Chinese folklore.
“Yeren” (妖猴) also known as the “Wildman of the Qin Mountains” and “Wildman of Hubei Province”, is a cryptid characterized as being an East Asian hominoid, often reported to be covered in hair all over its body. Yeren sightings were once abundant, especially in Hubei Province where most sightings were reported; however, recent reports have been rare. The name Yeren literally means “mountain monkey,” which is what the original eyewitnesses called it before the Chinese government coined the term Yeren.
The Yeren legends are closely related to the Qiang people, who speak a Tibeto-Burman language. The Qiang people used to live mainly on mountains and high plateaus, so they developed many legends about wild animals that live in the mountains with them. In modern times, sightings of Yeren are reported mostly near remote villages and towns, typically late in the evenings after dark during the winter months. As of print time, no substantial evidence of Yeren has been found and there is much dispute among cryptozoologists as to whether or not it actually exists. The Chinese government has conducted several searches for this beastly mammal but has so far come up empty handed.
Appearance varies greatly by region but is typically described as a human-like creature with extremely long arms and slightly hunched over posture. Height can reach up to two meters (6′ 5″). Some eyewitness accounts compare them to the size of an orangutan, while others claim they are much smaller, roughly the size of a large dog. The reported skin color is predominately brownish gray or black, but some eyewitnesses have claimed that Yeren have green and red hair. They are alleged to possess a terrible odor similar to sulfur.
Habitat: Reported mainly in areas surrounding remote villages and towns in the southeastern portion of China, such as Sichuan Province and Guangxi Province. Sightings have also been reported in areas surrounding Vietnam, Laos, and Myanmar.
Diet: Consists mainly of vegetation and small animals such as rodents.
Breeding: Mating habits are largely unknown but pair-bonding is believed to occur during the winter months, with the young being born in late spring.
Other Facts: It is unknown if these reports refer to a single species or several distinct species of ape. Many Chinese cryptozoologists believe that Yeren are a large unidentified species of primate native to southern China. Some also speculate that they may be an indigenous hominid descended from an archaic form of Homo erectus.
There is some speculation as to the origin and purpose of this animal. Some believe it may be a surviving member of a now-extinct primate species, others think it’s simply a large human that has gone unnoticed by modern man, while still others believe that it could be an animal sent by aliens or spirits for the consumption of humans.
- The Yeren is also said to resemble an ape or monkey in appearance; it is described as having long arms, swiveling eyes on stalks, and powerful legs that enable it to climb trees for food or shelter.
- The Yeren, translated in many ways, is viewed as a “wild or ferocious beast”.
- Reports of the creature have been made by locals since ancient times and there are numerous accounts of Yeren sightings from modern-day witnesses.
- Yeren is known as the “Chinese Bigfoot” or “Hairy Man” (hairy man 內便外馬)