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King Kong, Gigantopithecus & the Missing Link

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Author Topic: King Kong, Gigantopithecus & the Missing Link  (Read 2515 times)
Kristin Moore
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« Reply #60 on: May 27, 2011, 07:27:07 pm »

Brooke
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5    Icon 1 posted 01-22-2006 02:31 AM      Profile for Brooke     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote  I saw it, too. Giganto is listed as a possible "king Kong," but the ape in the movie is twenty-five feet while he stood ten feet. Still mighty big and the ape did live side by side with humans! But scientists think that humans were the ones that hunted him to extinction, much like in the movie.

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"The most incomprehensible thing about our universe is that it can be comprehended." - Albert Einstein
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Kristin Moore
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« Reply #61 on: May 27, 2011, 07:27:20 pm »

oscar
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Rate Member    Icon 1 posted 01-24-2006 07:21 AM      Profile for oscar     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote  When we find a skeleton is naïve to think we can really reconstruct their forms. In fact no hair, no color is known and the artist reconstruct what they already think must be the basis. If they think the entity was a simian or ape-men they will use their imagination as National Geographic artists (each one of them creating a different being out of the same fragments of fossils), hence I'm not convinced some of these entities were so simian as THEY WANT US TO BELIEVE specially watching human gigantic bones:

Many pages to read:
www.s8int.com/giants1.html
www.world-mysteries.com/sar_6.htm
www.starchildproject.com/analysis-01.html
www.starchildproject.com/analysis-02.html
www.starchildproject.com/lloyd-01.html
www.starchildproject.com/hybrid-ani.html
www.enigmas.org/aef/lib/archeo/askulls.shtml Posts: 3542 | From: china | Registered: Feb 2003 
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Kristin Moore
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« Reply #62 on: May 27, 2011, 07:27:43 pm »

Jason
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5    Icon 1 posted 01-24-2006 09:55 PM      Profile for Jason     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote  Oscar, I'm not so sure that those skulls (from the enigmas page) are supposed to be simian so much as the native custom of "binding," a practice done while the child is an infant. I believe they were discovered by a German expedition to the area back in the 1930's. Posts: 318 | From: Dorm Room | Registered: Oct 200
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Kristin Moore
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« Reply #63 on: May 27, 2011, 07:29:14 pm »

Analysis of Early Hominins


    The bones of more than 500 early hominins have been found.  From them, we have gained a broad understanding of these related species using an array of new technological aids.
    click this icon in order to see the following video  New Technology for Old Fossils--members of the Human Origins Program team of the Smithsonian
            Institution describe how they use cutting-edge technology in their scientific investigations.
            This link takes you to a video at an external website.  To return here, you must click the "back" button
            on your browser program.         (length = 2 mins, 23 secs)

    It is now understood that while there were considerable anatomical differences between the early hominins, they also shared a number of important traits.  By 3 million years ago, most of them probably were nearly as efficient at bipedal locomotion as humans.  Like people, but unlike apes, the bones of their pelvis, or hip region, were shortened from top to bottom and bowl-shaped (shown below).  This made the pelvis more stable for weight support when standing or moving bipedally.  The longer ape pelvis is adapted for quadrupedal locomotion.  Early hominin leg and foot bones were also much more similar to ours than to those of apes.  This is consistent with the likelihood of early hominin bipedalism.

   
Comparison of Pelvis and Foot Bones

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Kristin Moore
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« Reply #64 on: May 27, 2011, 07:29:40 pm »

Bipedal locomotion may have been an adaptation to living in a mixed woodland and grassland environment.  It has been suggested that bipedalism was selected for because it made it easier to see long distances when moving over areas covered with tall grasses.  This would have been a useful advantage in scavenging for food and watching for big cats and other predators in open environments.  An upright posture also potentially helps to dissipate excess body heat and reduces the absorption of heat from the sun because less skin has a direct exposure to ultra violet radiation during the hottest times of the day.  There is evidence suggesting that bipedal animals usually can walk greater distances because less energy is expended with their longer strides.  This would be useful for scavenging for food throughout vast areas.  However, the legs of bipedal animals need to be sturdy enough to support at least 2.5 times their body weight while running.  Over many generations, early hominin legs became longer and much stronger than their arms.  Their feet developed arches for more efficient support of their bodies.  In addition, their hands became more adept at carrying and manipulating objects such as tools and food.  These adaptations to walking bipedally on the ground made it progressively more difficult to climb and travel through the canopies of trees.
click this icon in order to see the following video  Walking Tall--a comparison between human and chimpanzee skeletons
        This link takes you to a video at an external website.  To return here, you must
        click the "back" button on your browser program.         (length = 56 secs)
click this icon in order to see the following video   Baby Steps: Learning to Walk, The Hominid Way--the evolution of bipedalism
        among our hominid ancestors.  This link takes you to an audio file at an
        external website.  To return here, you must click the "back" button on your
        browser program.         (length = 7 mins, 46 secs)

While the late australopithecines were similar to humans anatomically below the neck, their heads were significantly different from ours in several key features.  Their adult brain size was about 1/3 that of people today.  As a result, the widest part of the skull of these early hominins was below the brain case.  For modern humans, it usually is in the temple region.  Early hominin faces were large relative to the size of their brain cases.  They had comparatively big teeth with thick enamel, large jaws, and powerful jaw muscles. The size and shape of these muscles is indicated by flaring zygomatic arches click this icon to hear the preceding term pronounced and the presence of a sagittal crest click this icon to hear the preceding term pronounced, which was a jaw muscle attachment area in the robust species.  In modern humans, the jaw muscles are much smaller and attach onto the skull in the temple region.  From the side view, early hominin faces were concave or dish-shaped and projecting forward at the bottom due to their large teeth and jaws.  In contrast, our jaws are relatively small and our faces are nearly vertical.
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« Reply #65 on: May 27, 2011, 07:30:16 pm »


    Early hominin fossils have been found only in Africa.  The majority of them were discovered in East and South Africa.  However, some also were found recently in Chad, which is located in North Central Africa.  Current evidence indicates that there were as many as 12 species of early hominins between 6 and 1.5 million years ago, but they did not all live at the same time.  The following species are the most widely accepted ones:

        1.     Australopithecus anamensis
        2.    Australopithecus afarensis
        3.    Australopithecus africanus
        4.    Australopithecus aethiopicus (or Paranthropus aethiopicus)
        5.    Australopithecus boisei (or Paranthropus boisei)
        6.    Australopithecus robustus (or Paranthropus robustus)

    The fossil record of early hominins is being added to by new important discoveries almost every year.  As a result, it is not yet clear how many species of them actually existed nor is it certain what their evolutionary relationship was to each other.  However, the broad outlines of this complex evolutionary history are already known and are summarized here.  To see a more complete listing of proposed species of early hominins and their immediate ancestors, select the button below.  It would be helpful to have a printout of this table in order to understand the discussion of the early hominins that follows.
      Table of Early Hominins and Their Immediate Ancestors 
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« Reply #66 on: May 27, 2011, 07:30:31 pm »

Early Australopithecine Species

Australopithecus anamensis may have been the earliest australopithecine species.  They lived about 4.2-3.9 million years ago in East Africa.  Unfortunately, little is known about them due to the scarcity of their fossils and the fact that the ones that have been found are highly fragmentary.  This species apparently was descended from Ardipithecus ramidus, which lived around 4.4 million years ago, or an even earlier ape/hominin transitional species near the beginning of the Pliocene Epoch.  Anamensis was bipedal but may still have been an efficient tree climber.  The shapes of the arm and leg bones indicate that it was bipedal.  The canine teeth are relatively large compared to later australopithecines and humans.  The alignment of teeth in the jaw is somewhat rectangular, reminiscent of apes, rather than like the modern human parabolic dental arch (like the McDonald's golden arches sign).  Anamensis remains have been found in what had been woodlands around lakes.  Their diets were apparently mainly vegetarian with an emphasis on fruits and nuts.

Australopithecus afarensis lived about 3.7-3.0 million years ago in East Africa.  Skeletally, they were still somewhat transitional from earlier ape species.  This can be seen in their legs which were relatively shorter than those of the later australopithecines and humans.  Afarensis also had slender curved fingers reminiscent of chimpanzees.  Because of these anatomical characteristics, it has been suggested that they were less efficient bipeds and more efficient tree climbers than the later australopithecines.  Afarensis canine teeth were relatively large and pointed, reminiscent of apes.  They projected somewhat beyond their other teeth but not as much as in chimpanzees.  Some of the male afarensis had small sagittal crests.
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« Reply #67 on: May 27, 2011, 07:30:59 pm »



Australopithecus afarensis
(Lucy)
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« Reply #68 on: May 27, 2011, 07:31:25 pm »



    

Australopithecus afarensis
(reconstructed appearance)
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« Reply #69 on: May 27, 2011, 07:32:01 pm »



Kenyanthropus platyops
(reconstructed appearance
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« Reply #70 on: May 27, 2011, 07:32:16 pm »



photo of a reconstruction of the head and upper torso of an Kenyanthropus platyops
   

Kenyanthropus platyops
(reconstructed appearance)
   

Tim White and some other paleoanthropologists believe that there was considerable physical variation within the species Australopithecus afarensis.  They suggest that the recently discovered fossils classified as Kenyanthropus platyops (3.5-3.2 million years ago) was a variant form of afarensis but with somewhat smaller teeth.  White discounts the flattened face of platyops as being due to the deformation of the bones by ground pressure after death.  Meave Leakey disagrees.  She believes that platyops was a separate species and that it was more likely to have been the progenitor of humans.  Additional hominin fossils from the crucial time period of 4-3 million years ago must be discovered to conclusively determine the place of platyops in our evolution.
 
photo of an Australopithecus africanus skull
Australopithecus africanus

Australopithecus africanus lived about 3.3-2.5 million years ago in South and possibly East Africa.  Skeletally, they were less ape-like than earlier species of australopithecines but were still usually small and light in frame like afarensis.  However, the teeth of africanus were in some ways more like humans than like afarensis.  Specifically, the front teeth of africanus were relatively large like ours and their canine teeth did not project beyond the others.  Microscopic wear patterns on africanus teeth suggest a diet consisting of relatively soft foods, which very likely included some meat along with plants.  This does not necessarily imply efficient hunting skills.  More likely, they obtained meat by scavenging what remained on the corpses of animals killed by lions and other predators.  It is possible that they also did some hunting of small animals in much the same inefficient manner of chimpanzees today.  They probably ate insects and eggs as well.

The classification of Australopithecus garhi is still very problematical.  This Ethiopian fossil has been dated to 2.5 million years ago, which makes it contemporaneous with late africanus.  Largely for that reason, some paleoanthropologists have suggested that garhi is a variant of africanus.  However, several features of the head of garhi look more like a holdover from the older afarensis species.  On the other hand, the relative lengths of the arms and legs of garhi are more reminiscent of the first humans.  The discovery of butchered animal bones with garhi suggests that their diet included at least some meat, as was the case with africanus.
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« Reply #71 on: May 27, 2011, 07:33:03 pm »



Australopithecus africanus
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« Reply #72 on: May 27, 2011, 07:33:29 pm »

Late Australopithecine Species

The early australopithecines have been referred to collectively as gracile click this icon to hear the preceding term pronounced species (literally "gracefully slender").  Most of them were relatively small, slender, and delicate boned compared to the somewhat more muscular, robust species of australopithecines that mostly came later.  However, this is not always a reliable descriptive distinction because the range of variation in physical appearance of the two groups of species overlaps.  Subsequently, some individual graciles were bigger than some of the robust ones.  However, the robust species shared some characteristics of their heads that dramatically show that they had diverged from the evolutionary line that would become humans.  The late australopithecines, which were all robust species, had larger jaws accompanied by pronounced sagittal crests in the case of males.  They also had much larger back teeth (premolars and molars) and smaller front ones (incisors) compared to those of the early humans who were present at that time.
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« Reply #73 on: May 27, 2011, 07:34:02 pm »



 gracile
Australopithecine
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« Reply #74 on: May 27, 2011, 07:38:07 pm »



 robust   australopithecine   
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