05-07-2009, 12:19 PM #1
New Species of Pre-Historic Human Confirmed
The "Hobbit" people on the Island of Flores off of Indonesia have confouned anthropologists since they were found in 2003. THere were many theories as to who they were and how they got there. The new study released today confirms that they are an entirely different, undiscovered species of ancient human.
Along with their fossils the bones of Hippos were found - dwarfed hippos.
Similar to Pygmy Elephants. When a species ends up in a small space like an island they will begin to dwarf over generations to ensure their survival. A huge animal is not going to be able to survive in a small space so they begin to adapt. It is pretty amazing.
The finding of the dwarfed hippos showed scientists that the brain dwarfs much more than they originally thought and it is thought the same happened to the prehistoric humans living on the island.
Anthropologist also believe they are descendents not of Homo-Erectus, which was originally thought, but of another undiscovered species.
This was a huge find in 2003 and being an Anthropology buff I have followed these little guys since then. It is exciting to hear them be declared an entirely new species.
We learn new things all the time.'The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated'
05-07-2009, 01:28 PM #2
I remember reading about the discovery in '03. What an exciting thing to have determined it's a new species!
05-10-2009, 11:44 AM #3
We were watching something about this on PBS a week or so ago. So fascinating. I can't remember how they said they thought the hobbits got there.
If anyone else is interested, here's the link to the PBS program.
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