Re: Speciation - how do you know?

Nick Maclaren (
18 Sep 1996 16:12:25 GMT

In article <>, (Paul Crowley) writes:
|> In article <51gmfr$>
|> "Nick Maclaren" writes:
|> > You are implying that humans armed
|> > with wooden spears are much less lethal than African hunting dogs. The
|> > latter have been reported as occasionally killing even Cape buffalo,
|> > which are a damn sight tougher than the aurochs was. And they routinely
|> > kill wildebeest . .
|> You're forgetting the relative speed and vulnerability of the
|> predator. When the hunted wildebeest (or other prey) turns on
|> a dog, it can quickly skip out of danger while others attack the
|> prey's rear. H.n. wouldn't have the agility for this. It would
|> just get mown down.

Eh? Modern humans are quite capable of such manoeuvres (witness
bullfighting). Why should Neanderthals be so much slower? I just
DON'T believe that they got prematurely fat, paunchy and breathless!

Whether or not they regularly hunted aurochs 'close to', the poster
originally claimed that their build was a result of adaptation to
such hunting of large animals. Hunting red deer, reindeer, ponies
and wild sows with clubs alone is well within the ability of modern

Nick Maclaren,
University of Cambridge Computer Laboratory,
New Museums Site, Pembroke Street, Cambridge CB2 3QG, England.
Tel.: +44 1223 334761 Fax: +44 1223 334679