Harry Erwin (
Mon, 19 Jun 1995 07:19:11 -0400

I went through Tuttle's article on the subject in Primate Functional
Morphology and Evolution. Very interesting! Orangs knucklewalk in addition
to fist walking when they spend time on the ground. It's not as optimized
as in Pan and Gorilla, where the hand has been modified to handle the
stresses. On the other hand, I understand the small apes tend to be
bipedal, since they don't need the forelimb support as much. Morphology
tracks behavior, but at a distance! All this tells us that early hominids
probably used knucklewalking at times (when forelimb support was needed)
and abandoned it under some sort of selective pressure.


Harry Erwin
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PhD student in comp neurosci: "Glitches happen" & "Meaning is emotional"