A New Human Species…in China?

As early as 11,500 years ago, a strange group of people lived in China’s Red Deer Cave and Longlin Cave.

Red Deer Cave People

Partial Skull from the Red Deer Cave People
Attribution: Curnoe D, Xueping J, Herries AIR, Kanning B, Taçon PSC, et al. (2012) Human Remains from the Pleistocene-Holocene Transition of Southwest China Suggest a Complex Evolutionary History for East Asians. PLoS ONE 7(3): e31918. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0031918
Source: Wikimedia Commons

The Mysterious Red Deer Cave People?

These people, referred to as the Red Deer Cave people, are believed to be a separate species of Homo – possibly the last such species on Earth, next to modern man. Here’s more from New Scientist on the Red Deer Cave people:

And so it begins. For years, evolutionary biologists have predicted that new human species would start popping up in Asia as we begin to look closely at fossilised bones found there. A new analysis of bones from south-west China suggests there’s truth to the forecast.

…What’s more, Curnoe and Ji Xueping of Yunnan University, China, have found more evidence of the new hominin at a second site – Malu cave in Yunnan Province. Curnoe has dubbed the new group the Red Deer Cave people because of their penchant for venison. “There is evidence that they cooked large deer in Malu cave,” he says.

(See New Scientist for more on the Red Deer Cave people)

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