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← Where's the Beef? Early Humans Took It

Where's the Beef? Early Humans Took It - Comments

gordon's Avatar Comment 1 by gordon

McDonalds opened earlier than thought then?

Sun, 29 Apr 2012 14:33:55 UTC | #938154

Sjoerd Westenborg's Avatar Comment 2 by Sjoerd Westenborg

"One of my favorite images is of an Au. afarensis being dragged down by a giant otter," says vertebrate paleontologist Lars Werdelin at the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm.

Pictures or it didn't happen :)

Sun, 29 Apr 2012 14:48:11 UTC | #938158

GreatWhiteShark's Avatar Comment 3 by GreatWhiteShark

The sentiment of this article is comparable to a discussion I have submitted to RD.net and similar to many others on this forum: When, how and why do human/human ancestors cause extinction.

Predation within natural systems does not cause extinction, but rather effects it in species who have had their population fecundity reduced by environmental change. The last member of a species may be eaten by a predator, but predation alone can not cause extinction, in fact it some ways it prevents it (my opinion).

The shift from ecolgical member to ecological voyeur is ambiguous, at what point did we become so objective to ecology we found ways of beating it. Its the ecolgical equivalent of the 'apple of knowledge'. How we caused these extinctions was not necessarily a result of over predation, but more likely a combination of our heavy predation upon them and the concurrent impact of human existence on our shared environment.

Once you are aware of a social problem in your behaviour, you are responsible for fixing it. Thats a pretty uncontroversial comment, but not for ancient man who had no idea about evolution, ecology or the health of biodiversity being relative to the genetic diversity which exists within it.

Sun, 29 Apr 2012 14:48:38 UTC | #938159

squeegee's Avatar Comment 4 by squeegee

The poor Moa, it never stood a chance. Island hopping polynesians virtually used a scorched earth policy when discovering new lands and the 3 major islands of New Zealand must have seemed like an endless food source to them. Most of the larger prey [mostly species of Moa] would have become extinct very quickly...there are piles of bones which show they basically ate the drum stick and threw the rest away. Huge eagles, large enough to take a child, also disappeared very quickly once their prey was no more. By the time Cook arrived the Maori were down to hunting seals on the remote and difficult to get to coast of Fiordland.

Conservation seems like a very recent idea indeed although some communities must have been forced to practiced it once they had used up all resources and could not move on...Easter Island being a classic example.

Mon, 30 Apr 2012 01:27:55 UTC | #938254

Klaasjansch's Avatar Comment 5 by Klaasjansch

At first I thought this was an interesting piece but it ended giving me the feeling I had to feel guilty for my ancestors causing these poor predators to go extinct. Why does this always happen? Why is it so hard to see humans as an integral part of nature? Species have been causing other species to go extinct ever since evolution started. I don't think this means we can carelessly rummage our planet like idiots. By now we know that the impact we have on the planet is of a scale never seen before. We do have a responsibility there, but we have because we know what our impact is. We can hardly "blame" Australopithecus Afarensis for causing the extinction of a number of omnivorous species even if they did. And as I mentioned in a response to another article, there were probably other events adding to the equation. What of the other hyper carnivores? What so you think?

Mon, 30 Apr 2012 18:34:04 UTC | #938430

Tiende Landeplage's Avatar Comment 6 by Tiende Landeplage

"One of my favorite images is of an Au. afarensis being dragged down by a giant otter," says vertebrate paleontologist Lars Werdelin at the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm.

Isn't this somewhat redundant? I thought all paleontologists were vertebrates.

Mon, 30 Apr 2012 19:06:26 UTC | #938438

zappafile's Avatar Comment 7 by zappafile

Comment 6 by Tiende Landeplage :

"One of my favorite images is of an Au. afarensis being dragged down by a giant otter," says vertebrate paleontologist Lars Werdelin at the Swedish Museum of Natural History in Stockholm.

Isn't this somewhat redundant? I thought all paleontologists were vertebrates.

Badum pssssh!

Tue, 01 May 2012 22:55:21 UTC | #938831