Re: Dissecting the Aquatic Ape: Bipedalism

Elaine Morgan (
Fri, 5 Jul 1996 17:28:44 GMT

In article <4q00pc$> wrote...

> Elaine Morgan (Elaine Morgan <>) writes:
> >In article <4olomk$> wrote...
> >> Then you have not been paying much attention to Alex Duncan lately.
> >> Again, the hominid ancestor was not a chimpanzee. It was most likely
> >> an arboreal ape and as has been pointed out repeatedly highly arboreal
> >> primates from spider monkeys ot gibbons, when they descend to the
> >> forest floor, a bipedal.

This is not strictly true. As far as I know only the brachiators
are habitually bipedal on the ground. You can't get more arboreal than
an orang-utan, but on the ground it habitually fist
> >
> >> Occan's razor, Elaine. Bipedalism IS a terrestrial adaptation so it
> >> is reasonable to conclude that it evolved AS a terrestrial adaptation.
Well I don't imagine it evolved for purposes of swimming. It evolved for
purposes of proceeding from A to B with the hind legs on the ground and
the forelimbs not involved in the operation. But when the ground is
partly covered with water any primate trying to cross it is far more
likely to proceed on two legs then than in other circumstances,, from
everything I
have seen in wildlife films and wildlife books.
I will be told this is a personal assessment, anecdotal etc. etc.
I am trying to make it more scientific. I am offering to fund a
piece of research on a Japanese island where macaques have been
naturalised and live partly on sea-food. I want a study done on the
lines of K.D. Hunt's study, getting hard data on the percentage of time
spent walking bipedally (a) on the beach and (b) inland. The Japs are
willing to co-operate. I have written to K.D.Hunt asking advice on how
to go about it and how to find properly qualified people to carry it out.
He may be out of the country.