Re: Speciation-how do you know?

Sharyn Woodcock (
Sun, 13 Oct 1996 12:31:24 +1000

On 12 Oct 1996, Robert Gotschall wrote:

> In <> Phillip Bigelow <> writes:
> >
> >
> >The problem with this is that, assuming your claim is
> >true, neanderthals were never-the-less STILL quite successful in
> >their northern niche. Keep in mind that neanderthals go back nearly
> >200,000 years (and probably much earlier than that).
> >The last of them died out around 30Ka.
> > If neanderthals were unsuccessful in their environment, then they
> >were "unsuccessful" for at least 170,000 years! Surviving 170,000
> >years (roughly 3,400,000 reproductive generations) in a northern
> >tundra-like climate (with a few warmer glacial interstades
> >thrown-in) makes neanderthals pretty successful as a group.
> > Competition with H.s.s. probably led to neanderthal's demise, but
> >it only takes a SLIGHTLY different lifestyle (even something as
> >minor as cultural differences) for one group to wipe out
> >another group.
> > In other words, neanderthals may have been very good hunters,
> >and foliage foragers, and defenders, but H.s.s. was probably
> >slightly better at it.
> > It only takes a flea to tip a scale; you don't need an elephant
> >to sit on it.
> > <pb>
> I would add that modern European humans did a pretty good job of wiping
> out modern North American humans within the last few centuries. I
> don't think anyone would argue but that the North Americans were
> superior hunters and in most ways better adapted to the region. The
> introduction of Europeans to native N. Americans, or of modern humans
> to Neanderthals may have been ecologically comparable to turning
> rabbits loose in Australia. The evolutionary concept of -better fit-
> doesn't necessarily have anything to do with any human concept of
> superiority.
> Hob
To robert and philip, I only have one thing to say.......YES!!!
good stuff, coulden't agree more.