Ethiopia - Ancient jawbones put new species on the human family tree.

Discussion in 'Up to the Minute' started by Tulessa, May 28, 2015.

  1. Tulessa

    Tulessa Well-Known Member

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  3. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    I'm convinced that the evolution of homo sapiens was multi-faceted rather than strictly linear.

    But I wonder how scientists can confidently identify a new species on the basis of a single jawbone. What if they found the partial skeleton of someone like John Merrick (the "Elephant Man") dating from millions of years ago? Would they identify HIM as a separate species?
     
  4. Tulessa

    Tulessa Well-Known Member

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    Nova, I was thinking of you and woofy when I posted this. That's a good question. I just don't have the answer.
     
  5. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    Well, bless your cotton-pickin' heart, Tulessa!

    How kind of you to think of me when paleontologists find the "missing link"!

    Harumph! ;)
     
  6. Nova

    Nova Active Member

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    I could well be wrong, Tulessa, but maybe they assume for their hypothesis that the jawbone is "typical" of the subspecies. Then they look for other bones to confirm the existence of said subspecies.

    This isn't my field, but this is my best guess based on my liberal arts education.
     

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