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Early Human Ancestors Ate Grass

human ancestors ate grass

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#1    Karlis

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:19 PM

Early human ancestors in central Africa 3.5 million years ago ate mostly tropical grasses and sedges

"We found evidence suggesting that early hominins, in central Africa at least, ate a diet mainly comprised of tropical grasses and sedges," co-author Julia Lee-Thorp, a University of Oxford archaeologist, said in a press release.

She continued, "No African great apes, including chimpanzees, eat this type of food despite the fact it grows in abundance in tropical and subtropical regions. The only notable exception is the savannah baboon which still forages for these types of plants today. We were surprised to discover that early hominins appear to have consumed more than even the baboons."
Source


#2    questionmark

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:27 PM

That is not really new, new is that they started eating grass at such an early stage after leaving the trees... or maybe because they had not enough left on the trees they resorted to grass.

In any case, just another little detail confirming Darwin.

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#3    Abramelin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 05:27 PM

View PostKarlis, on 13 November 2012 - 05:19 PM, said:

Early human ancestors in central Africa 3.5 million years ago ate mostly tropical grasses and sedges

"We found evidence suggesting that early hominins, in central Africa at least, ate a diet mainly comprised of tropical grasses and sedges," co-author Julia Lee-Thorp, a University of Oxford archaeologist, said in a press release.

She continued, "No African great apes, including chimpanzees, eat this type of food despite the fact it grows in abundance in tropical and subtropical regions. The only notable exception is the savannah baboon which still forages for these types of plants today. We were surprised to discover that early hominins appear to have consumed more than even the baboons."
Source

From the article:

While this ancestor of ours clearly had big, impressive teeth, they would not have been able to tackle leaves day after day. The individuals also lacked cow-like guts to break down and digest such food, so the researchers suspect the early hominids probably relied more on the roots, corms and bulbs at the base of the plants.

Given the carbon isotope data, there is a very remote chance that the early hominids ate animals that, in turn, ate the tropical grasses.

"But as neither humans nor other primates have diets rich in animal food, and of course the hominins are not equipped as carnivores are with sharp teeth, we can assume that they ate the tropical grasses and the sedges directly," Lee-Thorp said.


Maybe the pain in their bellies made them start walking upright??


#4    Ashotep

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:20 PM

Maybe they ate the grass when nothing else could be found.


#5    Abramelin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:46 PM

View PostHilander, on 13 November 2012 - 08:20 PM, said:

Maybe they ate the grass when nothing else could be found.

YOU try to eat grass and digest it.

You will feel sorry you tried, next day.

You are not a cow, you do not have the guts to digest it.


#6    CRIPTIC CHAMELEON

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:46 PM

Hmm what you have here by the sound of it, is the making of the first salad.  :tu:


#7    Abramelin

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Posted 13 November 2012 - 08:53 PM

View PostCRIPTIC CHAMELEON, on 13 November 2012 - 08:46 PM, said:

Hmm what you have here by the sound of it, is the making of the first salad.  :tu:

Grass is not salad.

Try it.


#8    DieChecker

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 02:15 AM

My dog eats grass sometimes.... Usually when she is sick.

Didn't Abramelin just point out that the article says these early people ate the Roots, and not the stems of the grass? Post #3.

I wonder if they cooked their food if they had the opportunity? I've heard of chimps that will cook their raw food if they are provided a heat source.

Edited by DieChecker, 14 November 2012 - 02:15 AM.

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#9    JGirl

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 06:39 AM

they ate their grass cuz they had no papers.

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#10    DieChecker

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 08:09 AM

I believe the Ancestors also used the grass to Wipe....

Because leaves are scratchy.

Edited by DieChecker, 14 November 2012 - 08:09 AM.

Here at Intel we make processors on 12 inch wafers. And, the individual processors on the wafers are called die. And, I am employed to check these die. That is why I am the DieChecker.

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#11    PersonFromPorlock

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Posted 14 November 2012 - 11:08 PM

We eat 'grass' every time we eat wheat, and I'm not really sure what part of the grass they're talking about here: If our ancestors were eating the seed heads, that's not much of a revelation.


#12    lightly

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 11:50 AM

That's a good point.     Did they know how to use fire  3.5 million years ago ? Cooked would be nice.. and maybe honey.. .. and milk.

Edited by lightly, 15 November 2012 - 11:50 AM.

Important:  The above may contain errors, inaccuracies, omissions, and other limitations.

#13    Big Bad Voodoo

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 12:28 PM

View Postquestionmark, on 13 November 2012 - 05:27 PM, said:

That is not really new, new is that they started eating grass at such an early stage after leaving the trees... or maybe because they had not enough left on the trees they resorted to grass.

In any case, just another little detail confirming Darwin.

Its nothing new but it have nothing to do with Darwin. People countless time in history even in last century ate grass to survive in extreme situation. Wars, droughts...
In these days everything fits in Darwin theory.

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#14    questionmark

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 01:36 PM

View Postlightly, on 15 November 2012 - 11:50 AM, said:

That's a good point. Did they know how to use fire  3.5 million years ago ? Cooked would be nice.. and maybe honey.. .. and milk.

most probably not, and they started eating grass most probably because they were durn hungry, invading a new ecological niche.

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#15    Harte

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 04:11 PM

View PostKarlis, on 13 November 2012 - 05:19 PM, said:

Early human ancestors in central Africa 3.5 million years ago ate mostly tropical grasses and sedges

"We found evidence suggesting that early hominins, in central Africa at least, ate a diet mainly comprised of tropical grasses and sedges," co-author Julia Lee-Thorp, a University of Oxford archaeologist, said in a press release.

She continued, "No African great apes, including chimpanzees, eat this type of food despite the fact it grows in abundance in tropical and subtropical regions. The only notable exception is the savannah baboon which still forages for these types of plants today. We were surprised to discover that early hominins appear to have consumed more than even the baboons."
Source
Taken with the above information, this means that the fact that we have a city named Savanna in the USA serves as absolute proof that we Americans descend from baboons.

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