Red Deer Cave People: a new human species?

Posted on March 27th, 2012 in Evolution,Science by Robert Miller

Cave diggings in Southwest China have revealed fossilized remains of what may turn out to be a new human species, now referred to as the Red Deer Cave People. Skulls and other bone fragments have been dated to 14,300 and 11,500 years ago, with features distinct from modern man. This is an unusual finding, because human remains that recent would ordinarily be expected to resemble modern humans. However,  distinctive skull features include thick skulls, prominent orbital protrusions, jutting jaws and very large molar teeth. Their diet was rich in venison, hence the Red Deer Cave People name.
The Guardian features a wonderful lineup of the major human ancestors,beginning with Australopithecus afarensis, ‘the southern ape’, which lived between 3.8 and 2.9 million years ago. The Guardian has one of the best science search features I have ever seen on a newspaper site. You first click on the “News” tab, then the “Science” tab, then the “A-Z” tab at the end of the choices and voila–you have a huge menu before you that covers a broad array of scientific topics; for this particular story click on “anthropology” and you see the many links related to the subject, including the  story on the Red Deer Cave People. The entire Guardian is organized that way. It certainly gets my recommendation as the best way to organize an online news and information organization.

Red Deer Cave People (from The Guardian: possible human ancestor who lived 14,000 to 11, 500 years ago)

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