Page last updated at 10:05 GMT, Monday, 27 February 2006

Johor bans foreign ape man hunt

By Jonathan Kent
BBC correspondent in Kuala Lumpur

Measuring tracks in Johor

The southern Malaysian state of Johor has threatened to jail foreigners who venture into its jungles looking for a legendary ape man, dubbed 'Big Foot'.

The state's Forestry Department says Big Foot enthusiasts found on its land without a permit will face up to three years jail or a fine of up to $2,500.

The hunt for Big Foot has gripped Malaysia after a spate of sightings.

Now authorities are determined that if the ape man exists, Malaysians will be the first to find him.

Malaysians are being invited to pay just over $1 for a permit to roam around Johor state's forest reserves, where most of the reported sightings have taken place.

The state also plans to sponsor a scientific expedition, and although Malaysia has few primate specialists, foreigners will again not be invited.

Local tourism industry leaders told the BBC the ban on non-Malaysians entering forest reserves was daft and should be rethought.

The country hopes to lure 20 million foreign visitors next year and its main attractions are its beaches and its jungles.

Tourism bosses say the move will simply confuse and possibly drive away just the people they want to attract.

Johor to mount hunt for 'bigfoot'
26 Jan 06 |  Asia-Pacific
Country profile: Malaysia
24 May 03 |  Country profiles

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Sign in

BBC navigation

Copyright © 2019 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific