Re: An alternative to ST and AAT

Gerrit Hanenburg (
Fri, 22 Nov 1996 07:54:32 GMT (Paul Crowley) wrote:

>1) Is a regression equation for primates appropriate for
> hominoids? I'd expect that one using gibbons, chimps, gorillas
> and orangs would give a better (and larger) figure.

Hominoids *are* primates.
But as you wish,I calculated a regression equation using only
Hylobates,Pongo,Pan and Gorilla,(values of life history variables for
these genera taken from table 1 in Harvey and Clutton-Brock (1985).
Life History Variation in Primates. Evolution 39:559-581),

log (lifespan) = 3.698 + 0.107 * log (female bodyweight)
(lifespan in days,female bodyweight in grams) r=0.65

Expected lifespan A.afarensis (female bodyweight=29.3kg) is 41.1

>2) Female australopithecines are particularly small for
> hominoids; (especially for a terrestrial hominoid;) I suggest
> that when they adapted to their niche probably they experienced
> a reduction in size; that this was unlikely to have affected
> their longevity and that the figure should therefore be larger
> for this reason as well.

Care to explain why their longevity was not affected by the reduction
in body size?

>> JW: Phew. Just as well I didn't forward my information to
>> Roh. In the well known *science* journal National
>> Geographic Vol 168, No. 5 (1985), it is reported that an
>> exhaustive investigation by Alan Mann of the University of
>> Pennsylvania indicated an average life span for A.
>> africanus of 22 years.This was based upon a study of teeth.

>A.africanus fossils are found well inland, a long way from
>their natural home on the littoral.

And the evidence for the littoral being their natural home is?