Climate change has driven ancient human species to extinction

Many close relatives of our species, Homo sapiens, Has gone on this earth since the genus Fagot Developed over 2 million years ago. These hominins lived in various habitats and challenging environments. Some even crossed paths and intervened.

Although more than one can reach important technical and cognitive milestones, such as controlling fires, developing stone tools, or making clothes, today only we, H. Sapiens, Survive.

Our current uniqueness has been much debated by scholars. Some have proposed that H. Sapiens‘Better technical capabilities have given us an advantage over the rest. Others have suggested that we ate more varied diets or were more efficient runners than other homin.

Meanwhile, other researchers say that, given the high level of interbreeding, perhaps some hominins did not become extinct, as much as merged completely with our gene pool.

Researchers also hypothesize that climate change may have a role in extinction Fagot Species. In a new study published in the journal One earth, A multi-disciplinary team of scientists from Italy, the United Kingdom and Brazil make the case that this factor was the major driver in the extinction of other hominins.

The authors believe the findings may serve as a warning as humanity today faces man-made climate change.

“Even the brain powerhouse in the animal kingdom, [the Homo genus]”When it gets too extreme, one cannot survive climate change,” says paleontologist Pasquale Raya of the University of Naples Federico II, one of the study’s authors.

For this study, the team focused on just six of the accredited Fagot Species: H. Habilis, h. Ergaster, h. Erectus, h. Heidelbergensis, h. Neanderthalensis, And H. Sapiens. They left others because the available fossil records were too limited for their analysis.

Using a fossil database spanning 2,754 archaeological records, researchers discovered where these species have lived over time – linking both fossil evidence and tools associated with each species to different locations and time periods.

They also applied a statistical modeling technique called climate emulator of the past utilizing available records to reconstruct climatic conditions including temperature and precipitation over the past 5 million years.

“It offers a picture of the tremendous effects that climate adversities had,” says anthropologist Giorgio Manzi.

For three out of five extinct species – H. Erectus, h. Heidelbergensis, And H. Neanderthalensis – Just before these species died there was a sudden, strong change in climate on the planet. Climmer cools down for all three, for drip H. Heidelbergensis And for Neanderthal and wet H. Erectus. According to Raia, the annual average, temperature change was about 4 to 5 degrees Celsius.

The researchers further assessed how vulnerable these species were by trying to determine their tolerance to climate change over time, as their niche of choice for their presence in various locations.

The team determined, before disappearing, H. Erectus And H. Heidelbergensis More than half lost to their niche for climate change. Neanderthals lost one-quarter. Food sources are likely to decline as habitats have changed, and the cold has threatened survival for species with warmer climates.

This climate explanation is not necessarily significant for other drivers of extinction as well – the authors note that the competition H. Sapiens, For example, things could have been worse for Neanderthals – but Rai and his colleagues believe that their analysis reveals “primary factors” in the past. Fagot Extinction.

The extinction of neanderthals has been studied – and debated – quite a bit, but little attention has been paid to the loss of other hominin species, says archaeologist Tyler Faith, from the University of Utah, who was not involved in the study. This new study represents the first attempt to understand how many Fagot They say that species died out on a large scale in space and time.

“But I think it’s a little early to discount other possible extinction mechanisms,” Biswas says. He noted that the limited fossil record for some species makes it difficult to get a complete picture of the environment or climatic conditions Fagot Species can handle

Similarly, anthropologist Giorgio Manzie of the University of Rome’s Sapnija, who was not a contributor to the study, notes that several elements must be taken into account to explain the disappearance of the past. Fagot Species.

The relationship between climate change and extinction is complex, he says, and one does not always lead to the other: “Various sudden climate breakdowns and environmental crises have been known, at least, over the past million years. These Circumstances did not always lead. To extinction. “

Nevertheless, Manji believes that the new work makes a reasonable case that climate change can have a major impact.

“It presents a picture of the tremendous effects that climate adversities had on human populations of different species,” says Manji.

With the planet projected to be 5 ° C warmer than preindustrial levels by 2100, more climate challenges remain.

This work first took place on SAPIENS under CC BY-ND 4.0 license. Read the original here.


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