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Scientists unveil real reason behind the extinction of Neanderthal

IBTimes India 2019-12-02 18:00:31

A new study conducted by a team of researchers has apparently unveiled the real reason behind the extinction of Neanderthal. As per the research report, interbreeding and internal dynamics of Neanderthal's small population might have caused their demise.



Humans did not cause the extinction of Neanderthals


The new research report strongly indicates that modern humans did not contribute to the extinction of Neanderthals from the earth's surface. The research carried out by experts at the University of Eindhoven tried to determine whether the demise of Neanderthals was due to demographic factors and their mating traits.

Scientists, during the research, determined that the global population of Neanderthals was very small as it ranges from 5,000 to 70,000. Later, scientists tested their population simulations with the factor of interbreeding. Scientists found that kids born after interbreeding had at least 40% lower fitness than modern humans on average.


Scientists also checked the Allee effect where a small population often fails to reproduce due to various factors like limited resources and limited choices of getting a mate. In the research report published in PLOS, researchers noted that natural attrition experienced by the small Neanderthal population was undoubtedly one of the undeniable causes of their extinction. However, other factors like natural fluctuations in birth rates, and birth-death ratio were not found to be causes of Neanderthal's extinction.

Contradictory study reports


A few weeks back, a recent article in The Conversation written by Nick Longrich, a senior lecturer of paleontology and evolutionary biology at the University of Bath suggested that the extinction of eight human species on the earth might have caused due to the spread of homo sapiens.

Researchers, in their study report, noted that the violent nature of homo sapiens was once of the main reasons behind the extinction of these eight human species that once roamed across the earth. As these species fought each other, sophisticated weapons gave homo sapiens an additional advantage, and it helped them to overpower other species.