Palaeoecological and genetic evidence for Neanderthal power locomotion as an adaptation to a woodland environment

John Stewart, Oxala García Rodríguez, Monika Vlasta Knul, Lauren Christine Sewell, H. Montgomery, Thomas M.G., Y. Diekmann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

Abstract

The prevailing explanation for Neanderthal body form is the cold (glacial) adaptation hypothesis. However, palaeoecological associations appear to indicate a less cold woodland environment. Under such conditions, encounter and ambush (rather than pursuit) hunting – and thus muscular power and sprint (rather than endurance) capacity – would have been favoured. We hypothesise that the highly muscular Neanderthal body form reflects an adaptation to hunting conditions rather than cold, and here both review the palaeoecological evidence that they inhabited a mainly woodland environment, and present preliminary genetic analyses in support of this new hypothesis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-18
Number of pages18
JournalQuaternary Science Reviews
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jan 2019

Keywords

  • Endurance
  • power
  • running
  • encounter/ambush hunting
  • human evolution

Cite this

Stewart, John ; García Rodríguez, Oxala ; Knul, Monika Vlasta ; Sewell, Lauren Christine ; Montgomery, H. ; M.G., Thomas ; Diekmann, Y. / Palaeoecological and genetic evidence for Neanderthal power locomotion as an adaptation to a woodland environment. 2019 ; pp. 1-18.
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Palaeoecological and genetic evidence for Neanderthal power locomotion as an adaptation to a woodland environment. / Stewart, John; García Rodríguez, Oxala; Knul, Monika Vlasta; Sewell, Lauren Christine; Montgomery, H.; M.G., Thomas; Diekmann, Y.

29.01.2019, p. 1-18.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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AU - Montgomery, H.

AU - M.G., Thomas

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