Wednesday, August 06, 2014

battle for the earth


forbiddenknowledge | This is an episode in the series about of how Homo sapiens once shared the Earth with other species of hominids, and how, against all the odds, we survived.

In the not-too-distant past, humans shared this planet with other species of hominid: Homo Erectus, Homo floresiensis (which were kicking around until 12,000 years ago in modern-day Indonesia, as well as Homo neanderthalensis, which, it has been discovered, still lives on in 3-5% of the genetics of Europeans and Asians, and in some populations of the African Continent.

This episode begins 75,000 years ago in India, following a catastrophic super-volcanic eruption of Mount Toba. located in the archipelago which makes up the modern-day country of Indonesia. This volcanic blast was by far the largest volcanic event in the past 2 million years and the ensuing "nuclear winter" and dearth of food forced a showdown between the Homo sapiens who had strayed into India into and the Homo erectus, who up until that point had reigned supreme, in that area.

Homo sapiens populations are thought to have sharply decreased to 3,000–10,000 surviving individuals, which is supported by genetic evidence suggesting that today's humans are descended from a very small population of between 1,000 to 10,000 breeding pairs that existed about 70,000 years ago.

Evidence from pollen analysis has suggested prolonged deforestation in South Asia, and some researchers have suggested that the Toba eruption may have forced Homo sapiens to adopt new adaptive strategies, which may have permitted them to replace Neanderthals and Homo erectus - but it does not explain the mysterious survival of Homo floresiensis, a very small hominid, about 3 feet tall (I've seen a cast of a complete skeleton one of these cute little guys).

Homo floresiensis were living relatively close to the Mount Toba eruption compare to India, they were located in Southeastern Asia - and yet they only went extinct around 12,000 years ago and the legends told by numerous locals to this day still speak of them and how they would kidnap the children (of Homo sapiens' storytellers).

9 comments:

Dale Asberry said...

WTF?! Oh yeah...

Naive Tom said...

Long before there were any Israelites or Jews (all of whom were descendants of Abraham, none of whom yet existed in Abraham's lifetime - Abraham died when Jacob was just fifteen years old, before Jacob / Israel had any Israelite children), the LORD, Who is the Creator ("the LORD, the Creator of the ends of the earth" Isaiah 40:28 KJV) and Owner of all of the Earth ("all the earth is mine" Exodus 19:5 KJV), commanded the Iraqi-born Abraham to go and settle there, with the proclamation "Unto thy seed will I give this land."

http://www.keyway.ca/htm2012/20121118.htm

John Kurman said...

Yeah, it was freakin' Middle Earth back then. Fairies, goblins, elves, ogres… My explanation for H. Sap on top? Dogs.

CNu said...

since you decided to go there..., http://subrealism.blogspot.com/2014/08/scientific-morality-hard-in-paint-where.html

CNu said...

I never thought of that, but only a moment's reflection is required to realize exactly how HUGE a game-changer that little bit of inter-species symbiosis would be. Nocturnal alarm system, hunting partner, wingman(beast) in a fight, etc., etc., etc...,

Naive Tom said...

What's weird is, pre-language, were we/they people? Or just apes?

CNu said...

The simple answer is "yes". However, given the antiquity of figurative "art", I don't think the notions of hominid "pre-language" hold much water. Where there's figurative art, you can rest assured there's language. Before written language, is a whole other matter, and the technology of writing, of symbolizing language, HAD TO HAVE simultaneously reflected and spawned an immense surge in cognitive change.

Hominids who write are as different from hominids who only talk as chalk is different from cheese, imoho.

John Kurman said...

Language is far older than H. Sap. Fossil evidence suggest H. heidelbergensis, our common precursor, and possibly H. erectus, were quite the chatterboxes....

Naive Tom said...

I hear ya.