Re: AAH update (was: Bipe

J. Moore (
Wed, 28 Jun 95 17:42:00 -0500

Pa> The pack hunters, such as the wild dog and hyena, fill the "exhaustion
Pa> predation" niche. Lions fill the ambush niche, to an extent. Was there
Pa> room for a 10 mph weaponless bipedal ape to go pack hunting on the
Pa> savannah? Doesn't compute for me.

If you're going to talk about a transtional hominid, perhaps you could
try using some sort of example that actually has something to do with
how that hominid lived. Big game hunting seems to have begun no sooner
than at least 5-8 million years *after* the split from apes.

Pa> >different microhabitats were available. A. boisei is found in
Pa> >depositional environments that are indicative of wetter habitats than
Pa> the
Pa> >co-eval H. erectus. In fact, its not until the appearance of H.
Pa> erectus
Pa> >that we see good evidence for "good" adaptation to open habitats
Pa> >(human-like intermembral index, 1.8 m stature, thin "equatorial" body
Pa> >build).

Pa> Which leads back to the $64k question. If bipedalism wasn't a savannah
Pa> adaptation, what was it?

Why don't you just *try* reading some semi-current theory? Get rid of
your "treeless, waterless savannah" fixation and work with something
more accurate. You give some evidence above of knowing that the treeless,
waterless savannah you're using as a strawman versus the AAT is not

Pa> Display? No sign of sexual dimorphism.

Perhaps you could try using complete enough sentences to make
intelligible thoughts as well.

Pa> Temperature Regulation? But bipedalism didn't evolve on the savannah.

You mean your "treeless, waterless savannah"?

Pa> Speed? A new-born Gnu can out-run a mature human. You need a great 800m
Pa> time to survive on the savannah.

You think all animals which don't live in the deep forest, who instead
live in semi-open savannah mosaic woodlands, can run as fast as

Pa> Tool carrying? Bipedalism predates tools.

Actually unlikely; you are confusing "stone tools" with "tools". Again,
there's been *some* writing done on human evolution in the last 30 years.

Pa> Food gathering? Lots of problems with disadvantageous intermediate
Pa> forms.

The non-existent "law of disadvantageous intermediates" again. Give it
up, Pat; it doesn't exist.

Pa> > And finally, a comment on leopards -- yes, they climb trees, but
Pa> >they don't hunt in trees (their prey are almost exclusively terrestrial
Pa> >animals).

Pa> But they often hunt from trees. The Tatung boy was, apparently, an early
Pa> victim.
Pa> Pat Dooley

"Tatung"? I think that was those two-legged camel thingies Han Solo
rode in the second Star Wars movie. "Taung", on the other hand, was a
child, of unknown sex (where *do* you get your wacky ideas?), and you
also seem to mixing your sites willy-nilly (ie. mixing Taung and
Swartkrans here; Swartkrans is where you see possible signs of leopard
predation on australopithecines). Have you been checked for allergies
lately, like an allergy to facts? They don't seem to stick to you very

At any rate, leopards, except possibly in deep forest, do not "hunt from
trees". Even a little study, or just casual watching of nature shows on
the tube, would tell you that leopards in African open woodlands and
savannah, hunt "from" the ground, and usually then carry their prey up
into trees to get away from obnoxious prey-stealing beasties, such as
hunting dogs and hyenas.

Jim Moore (

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