Re: Who Killed the Australopithecines?
Phil Nicholls (email@example.com)
21 Apr 1995 14:07:52 GMT
In article <bardD7CG75.MF@netcom.com>, BARD <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
>>Please note the last sentence in the second paragraph of my original
>>message. Australopithecus robustus may have continued to exist until
>>as recently as 700,000 years ago, well after the extinction of
>>Homo habilis and well after Homo erectus left Africa.
>>The only sign of violence we can see in any of the Australopithecine
>>fossils is some evidence that leopards considered them good prey.
>>Your proposal is an extraordinary claim and extraordinary claims
>>require extraordinary evidence. You have presented NO evidence
>>MY position is that there is no evidence as to what caused the
>>extinction of Australopithecines and therefore there is no reason
>>to suspect and unnatural demise.
>>Phil Nicholls "To ask a question you must first
> I repeat....
> What *EVIDENCE* do you have that A. species demise
> was due to natural extinction?
I am, perhaps mistakenly, under the impression that we are talking
about scientific evidence here. To repeat my previous answer,
I don't know what caused the extinction of any species of Australo-
pithecines. You are the one proposing a specific cause and therefore
the burden of proof is on you, not me.
I assume natural extinction because there is no evidence to suggest
otherwise. You are the one proposing a specific cause. All you are
being asked to do is to support it with some evidence.
Try completing the following statement:
IF Homo ___________ [fill in species] killed off Australopithecines,
THEN we should find _____________________________________________
observations from the fossil record that you predict should indicate
To put forward a hypothesis you have to have an IF/THEN relationship
between your explanation and the data.
If you can't generate predictions then you don't have a hypothesis.
Phil Nicholls "To ask a question you must first
Department of Anthropology know most of the answer."
SUNY Albany -Robert Sheckley
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