Re: evolution aquatic ape theory - no big predators in the miocene in africa ?

Omega (
Mon, 20 Jan 1997 16:09:00 -0800

J de Lyser wrote:

> Afarensis therefore, had probably no real predator, as acinonyx influence is
> at best doubtfull. Maybe the only real competition of importance to
> Afarensis (and pre-homonids in general) were ...other Afarensis /homonids!,
> This might explain the much faster evolution (intelligence increase, body
> size etc) of homonids compared to most other species.

Which brings us to the most likely theory regarding the latter phases
of our pre-human evolution -- an unterminated positive feedback loop of
Afarensis/homonids competing against same. A process that would have
would presumably terminate only after having driven the evolution of
human form to some physiological limit once they started throwing stones
and/or words/protowords at each other on a regular basis.

About the earlier phases when we were supposedly acquatic. I find that
troublesome either way. Without large carnivourous land predators,
"chimps throwing rocks" are pretty much on top of the food chain and so
"the evasion of predators", one of the big calling cards behind the
"wading ape theory" takes a big loss. Still the diving reflex, fur-
lessness, salt metabolism, subcutaneous fat, and newborn swimming
ability (to the extent that these things hold up factually) do seem
to be better explained this way than otherwise. Seems like the mystery
of this earlier phase only deepens.