A man who spent years trying to persuade the world the Sasquatch exists is taking the B.C. government to court to try and prove it.

Todd Standing filed a civil lawsuit in B.C. Supreme Court earlier this month, alleging the B.C. government is in "dereliction of duty" because it won't recognize his efforts and evidence, which he says prove the Sasquatch exists.

The creature — sometimes referred to as Bigfoot — is said to resemble an ape, walks upright and inhabits forests. It is widely considered to be a myth.

However, Standing argues that the Sasquatch has a right to be recognized as a distinct and protected species.

He intends to present physical and video evidence, and expert eye-witness testimony to the court to prove the elusive creature exists in the forests of British Columbia, as well as Alberta and Washington state, where he is also filing similar claims.

'This is the real deal'

"When a judge sits down with me and realizes what I have and who's with me — this is going to happen," Standing said in an interview from Golden B.C.

"It's no joke, I'm coming with PhDs, professors, police officers, the best in the world … this is the real deal, the evidence is here."

In 2014, Standing claimed to have found a Sasquatch hair, but a lab that studied it said it was human hair, or that of another species.

Many have tried

Many Sasquatch and Bigfoot trackers have tried — and failed — to prove to the world that the mythical, mysterious creatures are real.

In 2008, two Georgia men claimed they had bagged the dead body of a Sasquatch. The material turned out to be a rubber Halloween costume.

In 1967, the dark, grainy footage of a hairy lumbering creature walking in the wilderness, known as the Patterson-Gimlin film, was hailed by believers as positive evidence. Despite decades of examining the film, no one has been able to definitively debunk its contents.

Standing said he is aware his court action may make him seem a little off balance, and that he may next be asked to "prove unicorns and Santa Claus should be a protected species too." But he doesn't mind if his claim is met with skepticism.

"I have a lot of love and respect for the species. I admire them so greatly," he said.

A spokesperson with the Ministry of Environment said the province has yet to file a response.