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Palaeontology

Potential new human species discovered

By T.K. Randall
June 21, 2014 · Comment icon 80 comments

The find is being hailed as potentially groundbreaking. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Tim Evanson
Ancient remains found in a cave in China may belong to a species of human that lived 11,000 years ago.
In what could be one of the most significant paleoanthropological discoveries ever made, Australian researcher Darren Curnoe and his colleagues believe that they may have uncovered evidence of a previously undiscovered species of human that lived alongside our ancestors as recently as 11,000 years ago.

Known as the "Red Deer Cave people", these hominids were extremely similar to modern humans but with some significant physical differences.
The idea that they could have survived until so recently, even outliving the Neanderthals, has raised an array of questions about how these ancient people would have lived, how they interacted with humans and what it was that caused them to die out.

"The fossils just don't fit with the dominant view in science at the moment about who was around 11,000 years ago or 14,000 years ago, how they relate to us, and how we think of ourselves as humans in relation to nature," said Curnoe.

"We tend to think of ourselves as special. So it raises some pretty deep and challenging questions."

Source: Sydney Morning Herald | Comments (80)




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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #71 Posted by regeneratia 10 years ago
Yeah, seems like that would be true. Pretty lush environs as it appears today. Not too cold. Don't know where the poles were 11,000 years ago, but today the area probably sees little temp changes, most likely some monsoons or something. I don't know. I just have to explore more. http://www.tripadvis...ns.html#MAPVIEW Saw some photos of the area. https://en.wikipedia...ms_hatched).svg I am getting tired. 2am, central. Not my usual bedtime. Losing my typing skills, if I ever had any. Good night all. there is minor personal passion to find out about this glorious new fella. Amend: this is closer ... [More]
Comment icon #72 Posted by DieChecker 10 years ago
Honestly, I think we have to ask the question: Did they really die out? If they are so close to us, why are we not finding their burials or more of their bones? The recreation of the Red Deer people looks somewhat like some of the recreations of Almas seen in Asia. Could be a few still running around?
Comment icon #73 Posted by aquatus1 10 years ago
And the ones ofiound in Western China? Got a perception control for that? Nope. I don't often indulge in politics when it comes to science. What you see is what you get. Why exactly you see conflict where there is none is baffling to me. You keep coming up with these new discoveries in science and then use them to claim that scientists hate new discoveries. You keep accusing scientists of being static and unchanging, and you support it by quoting scientific opinions that are decades out of date. This isn't the first time it's happened. Like it or not, science is indeed fluid. Dogma plays a ver... [More]
Comment icon #74 Posted by SaraT 10 years ago
No, no. I've seen that person on the Tube. He mumbles to himself in the corner whilst the rest of the passengers stay far away.
Comment icon #75 Posted by psyche101 10 years ago
The recreation of the Red Deer people looks somewhat like some of the recreations of Almas seen in Asia. Could be a few still running around? I have seen this one, but I do not know that it is at all accurate: The more common depiction I have seen is this one: Which I find a striking resemblance to the Australian Indigenous. Yet, totally unrelated.
Comment icon #76 Posted by Peter B 10 years ago
http://www.abc.net.au/science/articles/2014/06/24/4027999.htm The depiction of human evolution as a simple linear affair is not only laden with historical baggage, it incorrectly portrays the true complexity of our past, argues Darren Curnoe. Curnoe is one of the archaeologists involved in the Red Deer Cave work.
Comment icon #77 Posted by DieChecker 10 years ago
No, no. I've seen that person on the Tube. He mumbles to himself in the corner whilst the rest of the passengers stay far away. That is because he is speaking "red deer people" language and he smells like a red deer person.
Comment icon #78 Posted by Leonardo 10 years ago
What I find interesting is that everyone can understand and agree that there are like 5 different Species of snub-nose monkey in Southern Asia, but some people have a real and dramatic problem if you suggest there might have been 2 or 3 species of hominid living there at some point. How would isolated populations of humans not evolve differently into new species just as a monkey does? Humans have only stopped differentiating due to the ease of travel over the last 2000 years. Depending on the definition of 'species' used, it could be argued that there are still multiple 'species' (or, perhaps,... [More]
Comment icon #79 Posted by Erowin 10 years ago
I missed this last night. Any link where it's streaming or uploaded?
Comment icon #80 Posted by nohands 10 years ago
aws


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