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28-12-2013, 15:51   #1
JuliusCaesar
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Mating Habits of Early Hominins

http://www.the-scientist.com/?articl...arly-Hominins/

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A high-quality genome sequence obtained from a female Neanderthal toe bone reveals that the individual’s parents were close relatives and that such inbreeding was prevalent among her recent ancestors, according to a paper published today (December 18) in Nature. But the sequence also reveals that interbreeding occurred between Neanderthals and other hominin groups, including early modern humans.

“Did humans evolve like a constantly branching tree? A lot of people think so,” said Milford Wolpoff, a professor of anthropology at the University of Michigan, who was not involved in the study. “But there’s also been this thread of thought, by some people like me, that humans evolved more like a network, where there are different populations and they split and sometimes they come back together and they mate.” The new toe bone sequence data, he said, is “really important because it’s giving us good evidence that there’s been constant interbreeding between different human groups all through prehistory.”
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29-12-2013, 18:11   #2
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The network idea appeals to me too. Makes more sense. You see it in populations even today. Cultures/populations mostly date and mate inwards, but some date and mate outwards. Even in very multicultural societies you tend to see this. Go back to a time of much lower populations densities and this would make even more sense. You get some inbreeding yes, but then you also have outlier genes coming in and going out from time to time.

The old idea still held on to dearly by some that we're all Africans, some left and we just outcompeted other humans always looked dodgy to me. We weren't migrating into virgin territory(except for the Americas/Australia), there were people already living there. In Africa too. I'm sure there were incidents of violence and xenophobia and you can see this among hunter gatherers today, but people being people you also see quite a bit of horizontal mambo goin on too. Exchanges of mates can often be a peace treaty vibe too. Chief's son marries other chiefs daughter kinda thing. Even Neandertals who seem to have been very xenophobic(in Europe anyway) got it on with moderns and vice versa.

Plus go back in time a bit and we don't look that very different from each other. Early modern humans are slightly taller on average, less bulky, but still more bulky than we are today. They had often had stonking brow ridges, eyes wider apart than us and not that much of a chin.

Let's take the Pepsi challenge


Spot the African early modern dude versus the European Neandertal?

Neandertal is the first guy, Early modern the second. Now unless you're really looking for certain features there's not that much between them. In life the biggest obvious diff would have been skin colour. The Neandertals were pale(though no doubt pretty tanned) and the Early modern were a dark people.

Interestingly when you google for Neandertal skull, this guy comes up a lot;

And IMHO it's the same Early Modern Skhul V I posted above. Compare and contrast I reckon they're one and the same. That's how easy it is too mix them up.
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30-12-2013, 01:41   #3
Adam Khor
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Funny that you should post this, as just yesterday I was looking at this (rather creepy) video of a supossed Yeren-human hybrid from China (Yeren being the name for the local Bigfoot/wildman variant). The mother claims to have been raped by the Yeren, but refused to allow her son to be studied further. (He's dead now, apparently).
Of course many say this was just someone afflicted with microcephaly or something, but there IS something eerily ape-like about him. Reminds me a lot of many Homo erectus reconstructions.

Not trying to defend the hybrid idea- just thought it was interesting and worth seeing if you hadn´t already:

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30-12-2013, 10:49   #4
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Man that's freaky..
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10-04-2015, 18:48   #5
Adam Khor
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Age of Australopithecus prometheus determined

This is the hominin usually known as "Little Foot"

http://www.ancient-origins.net/news-...reature-020282

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28-04-2016, 04:09   #6
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Our genus

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29-04-2016, 08:30   #7
Adam Khor
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Boskop man freaks me out to no end. But I think it's not considered a thing anymore. What a shame
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29-04-2016, 09:35   #8
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Sadly so and hasn't been a thing since the 60's IIRC. Basically early 20th century researchers at the height of the missing link craze found a partial braincase that was at the upper limit of modern humans and got excited. As you would. Then they cherry picked any larger - but still within upper normal limits - as being a part of this "race", et voila the Boskops.

This is quite common in hominid research. We see it with stone tools and actually I'd say IMH anyway, we're still seeing that today in that field to some degree. Take the "hand axe". When the antiquarians started to realise these were likely very ancient, they started to collect them using modern eyes and again cherry picked the finest and most symmetrical examples. The "pretty" ones. Today when we look at in situ assemblages we see that they varied in shape and levels of finish. A lot. There have been attempts to set different shapes into certain geographical areas and there's some meat on those bones, but again there's quite the bit of cherry picking going on there too. EG the Bout coupe hand axe. Considered locally strongly diagnostic for British Neandertals, yet I have a near letter perfect one in my personal stash found in southern France. Oops. Must have been on a gitte holiday back in the day.

The Mousterian Levallois technique lithic culture itself as described currently I have some issues with too. Again there is serious cherry picking going on and only the examples that fit the theory are focused on. There are tables of "types" of "final outcome" tools of different but planned shapes. Though if you look at assemblages you're really trying to fit square pegs in round holes. The vast majority of such tools don't fit neatly into the imagined types. If you look at the stone cores left over, you'll be looking a long time indeed to find one that looks like the one in the wiki animation. Yes they did make Levallois points and clearly set out to make them(as evidenced by some with secondary retouch to refine the shape), but equally they used the method to just get usable cutting edges and "design" be damned.

One more recent example of this was highlighted in that Brian Cox series on humanity and such a while back. A discovery in Africa of points and blades from a time way before they would be expected. Great, but if you read the original dig report and looked at the finds, the so called "blades" were a tiny proportion of the tools of all sorts of shapes actually found and were themselves variable in shape. You have a blade culture where you commonly find blades and they make up a large percentage of the finds, you don't have one where they're a minority.

Don't get me started on every new skeletal find being a new human species...
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29-04-2016, 09:54   #9
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Same happens with dinosaurs... so many good names wasted on measly fragments...

What do you know about Homo tsaichangensis? Think it may be H. erectus or something else?
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29-04-2016, 11:51   #10
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Going on a jawbone fragment dredged from the sea out of context and with no reliable dating means it's anybody's guess and anything more than a guess is "scientific" noodling over tiny details. Details that mean nada unless more specimens show up. If I was to guess and it is an archaic I'd say Erectus myself. They seemed to have been an extremely variable people. Check out the ones from Georgia all from the same place and contemporary with each other.



Now if I was a betting man I'd bet that if they had been found in five different places there'd be at least two different "species" claimed. Check out the guys second and third from the left. One has a much flatter face than the other. One looks more hominid than ape and brow ridges are very variable across the board. The toothless dude looks to be an old individual, but look at the size of the brows. That's before we get to possible gender differences. In that line up 1,2 and 5 might be lads and 3 and 4 might be lasses.
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01-06-2017, 21:25   #11
Adam Khor
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Homo naledi coexisted with Homo sapiens

Apparently, it lived 335.000 to 235.000 years ago or so, much younger than anticipated. 
https://phys.org/news/2017-05-homo-n...young-age.html
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01-06-2017, 21:39   #12
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This is the most complete spine of any early hominin known

https://www.sciencedaily.com/release...0523083546.htm
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05-06-2017, 21:43   #13
Adam Khor
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Did humans, other hominins reach North America 130.000 years ago?

This study suggests so, but is apparently controversial already.
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/26/s...ype=collection
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05-06-2017, 23:31   #14
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I've been always slightly surprised that they didn't TBH AK. I recall reading and seeing a pic of a skull found in South America and it looked very primitive, like Homo Heidelbergensis primitive. Set against that is the long history of North American folks collecting flint tools and not a single verifiable example of a pre Sapiens one has come up.
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05-06-2017, 23:56   #15
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Given the effectiveness of hominid.hunters and the local waves of extinctions that can be measured by their arrival in America, there should be lots of auxiallary evidence already to back that up if true.

Slightly OT, but the writer Harry Turtledove wrote a book that postulated what would happen if such early hominids instead of Native Americans were present in the time of Columbus onwards - "A Different Flesh".
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