Questions tagged [human-evolution]

The study of evolution with a particular focus on questions about the evolution of modern humans.

41 questions with no upvoted or accepted answers
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Were Neandertals as Hairy as We Are?

What I mean to say regards facial and androgenic hairs. There are many theories as to why some people have both kinds of hairs, while others have one or the same and others still have neither. The ...
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121 views

What niche was humanity theorized to fill before we possesd weapons and coordination to hunt & kill large prey?

I'm really interested in evolution, and for a err 'hobbyist' I think I understand a good bit of evolution and adaptation and the role it has played in many species. However, I feel I'm rather ...
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112 views

Genetic variance for a behavioural trait among human populations

From this article from The Guardian: We instinctively assume that differences in behaviour that are in fact due to culture must be linked to – even caused by – characteristics of appearance. That ...
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39 views

Are mosquitoes actually louder than similar flying insects, or have we evolved to hear them?

I've come across many flying insects smaller than the common housefly, but (anecdotally) the only such species that I can hear from an appreciable distance away is the mosquito, with its distinctive ...
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46 views

Around what time did dark skin disappear from Europe?

As Europeans gradually became lighter skinned, there would have been people that still had dark skin. Around what time period did Europeans become completely light skinned?
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54 views

What natural defence mechanism does the human body have against lead poisoning?

It is known that lead ion takes place of necessary ions, like calcium, in the body, but does not perform their task, hence wrecking the system. So how does the body eventually recognise this threat ...
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95 views

Is there any evolutionary significance of downward facing nostrils in human beings?

The nostrils in apes and monkeys are almost at the front, but in humans nostrils (external nares) face downwards. Also a lot of non-primate mammals like goats have nostrils at the front. Is it the ...
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588 views

Are humans getting taller, shorter, staying the same height?

This post stems from this question, and specifically this article, which was provided within a response. From what I gathered, the article attempts to make a correlation between the size of a ...
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216 views

What is the biology behind human population dynamics?

A paradox: Human population growth looks a lot like a simple logistic growth pattern. But the simplest interpretation of logistic growth doesn't seem to fit. Is this peculiar to humans, or does it ...
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47 views

How detailed a construction of the family tree of known human fossils do we have?

For the sake of this question, by "human" I mean Hominina. The best I could find is this, which isn't very detailed. Of the dozens of paleospecies we'd seek to link up, do we have a more detailed tree ...
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200 views

Have people in Africa already started evolving resistance to AIDS?

Are people living in areas where AIDS is rampant (for e.g. Africa), less likely to die from it than they once were because some of the people without genes/mutations that give them resistance already ...
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53 views

Why is it that only humans are ashamed of certain critical biological activities

Humans are ashamed of certain activities that are critical to our survival. Examples: mating, defecation, exposing certain parts of our bodies This restricts some activities from being performed while ...
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16 views

(Soft) Lay Survey of human natural history

I am looking for an introduction to the natural history of humans. I had originally thought Sapiens until I found out it is more a history and archeology book of dubious scientific accuracy. The Sorts ...
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31 views

Are there “old” neuron types in the neocortex?

"Old" may mean a neuron type that appeared early in the tree of life, and it may mean – going together – that it comes early in the lineage tree of neuronal cells, rooted in the fertilized ...
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82 views

Which theory has more evidence, humans appeared in Africa 200,000 years ago, or there were already humans in Europe at least 210,000 years ago?

This theory Modern humans originated from a woman who lived in modern day Botswana says Every person alive today descended from a woman who lived in modern-day Botswana about 200,000 years ...
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40 views

Do pale skinned people show other low light adaptations?

So, pale skin is, fundamentally, an adaptation to living in low light conditions. Pros: reduce energy spent on producing melanin, increase vitamin D production. Cons: more vulnerable to sunburns and ...
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59 views

Is it tautological that all living humans descended from a single male and single female human ancestor?

Many popular science articles cite high sequence conservation of mitochondrial DNA and the Y chromosome among living people as evidence that all humans are descended from a single male and single ...
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124 views

What is the evolutionary advantage of getting hard nipples when being aroused? Why can they even be stimulated sexually?

I try to understand the evolutionary advantages of the body reactions of nipples and penises/vaginas. I'm confused, because I can explain the evolutionary advantage in a logical & consistent way ...
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5k views

What is the occipital bun, precisely (in Neanderthals and Homo Sapiens)?

I've read that the occipital bun is an anatomical feature of the Neanderthals, and only because modern humans (except sub-Saharan Africans) carry a few percent of Neanderthal DNA due to ...
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24 views

Are there any open phylogenetic projects that don't require coding to make a contribution

I am stay at home learner, not pursuing education formal education and currently doing a part time job. I've however completed masters in biotechnology and I'm studying to pursue PhD in molecular ...
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36 views

What percentage of a complete Denisovan genomes lives on in the union of the sets of overlapping pieces in extant humans

In studies like this one mapping out distributions around the world or the analysis described in this article (suggesting a contribution from a non-Denisovan but Denisovan-like unidentified hominin to ...
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58 views

Sub-saharan africans (Andamanese, Semang) have the ancestral hair-type, do they also have pediculus humanus capitis lice?

Do humans with the ancestral hair-type also have pediculus humanus capitis lice? Pubic hair lice, Pthirus pubis, are adapted morphologically to cling onto coarse body hair, and originates from ...
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53 views

In this poisson distribution in olfactory receptor (OR) pseudogenes neutral mutation rate, how is the mean used?

The 2005 paper A comparison of the human and chimpanzee olfactory receptor gene repertoires describes a poisson distribution, with a mean of 0.701 From that mean, how is the gene disruption rate of ...
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202 views

Are there hyoid bones of Homo habilis in the fossil record?

Hyoid bones have been found for Homo erectus, Homo neanderthalensis, Australopithecus afarensis, and some more hominids. Have hyoid bones been found from Homo habilis? References: Capasso, L., E ...
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63 views

Different number of flaps in heart valves

Can anyone tell me why the different valves of heart have different number of flaps is it in any way related to evolution of homo sapiens.
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139 views

What were the Neanderthal innovations?

At some point the neanderthal and modern human lineages diverged. I'm not sure what exactly their most common recent ancestor was (I see some sources suggesting homo heidelbergensis), but in any case ...
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76 views

Why were the earliest humans hunter gatherers instead of fruit eaters living on trees?

How is it that the earliest humans who evolved from primates (who live on trees and mostly eat fruit) became hunter-gatherers (which seems like a harder, more stressful and more dangerous way to find ...
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54 views

Did humans evolve the ability to swim? Or is it just luck that we are able to swim?

Many animals like ducks have evolved features to be able to swim. Even not so aquatic animals like a tiger evolved so that its feet can act as paddles. In humans I don't see any direct feature that ...
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30 views

mircro evolution in human

I know that microevolution has been experemnted on Lizards https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2008/04/lizard-evolution-island-darwin/ it is clear that creatures evolve with new environment ...
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42 views

When did humans or their ancestors gain the instinct to take shelter?

I was going to ask if seeking shelter in a constructure dwelling or natural formation was instinctive to modern humans or if it is a learned sociatal behaviour. By shelter I mean seek routine ...
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19 views

Does the rate of human evolution change over time?

Weakening the natural selection would increase the rate of evolution. This is because mutations aren't removed as efficiently – this increases their frequency. However, this is not the result of ...
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32 views

Biological & Evolutionary Reasons for Palm (Bi)Symmetry

The fingers of the human palm exhibit a (bi)symmetrical pattern with regards to their size, in the sense that the thumb and the pinky are almost the same size, and the same holds for the index and ...
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49 views

What is the scientific consensus on whether humans were monogamous during the period of evolutionary adaptedness?

The book The Mating Mind by Geoffrey Miller asserts, as part of its thesis, that humans were not monogamous in the environment of evolutionary adaptedness. I found the book vivid and persuasive, but ...
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54 views

Why does it seem like there is very little disparity between races in regards to intelligence

There is numerous biological difference between human races, from height to average BMI to various organ size. Oddly however there is very little disparity in regards to intelligence (when accounting ...
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33 views

Why do some people have a fear of depths?

I'm asking this question on this website because I want an evolutionary reason rather than a reason of how the human brain works. In one episode of "The Nature of Things," I heard David Suzuki say he ...
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45 views

Carbohydrate diet and dental health

I read that human started carbohydrates rich diet after adopting agriculture before that meat was main energy source which has comparatively less carbohydrate. High carbohydrate started destroying ...
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Is it normal to immediately sense bed bug bite?

So my house has bedbugs for 2 years already and for the first year of having bed bug i cant tell if it bit me or not because once my skin starts going itchy the bed bug is already full of blood and ...
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73 views

It is possible that for an immortal species to arise via biological evolution?

It is possible that for an immortal species to arise via biological evolution? In biological evolution, living organisms continues to change. However, is there a point wherein evolution stops due to ...
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70 views

single use traits

Are there any known traits (in any organisms) that serve exclusively one purpose? (Counterexample: Giraffes long neck help them reach less available food AND communicate sub-sonically). If so is ...
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272 views

Sex and human's sexual urge.

Why is it necessary for humans to feel pleasure while having sex? Why is it that other animals don't need to experience it? Is it evolutionary ? Why do we mate for pleasure when it's so energy wasting/...
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82 views

Disproof mitochondrial eve is 6500 years old

Some creationists, such as Roger Liebi, actively exploit this article: A high observed substitution rate in the human mitochondrial DNA control region (published in Nature Genetics, April 1997). This ...