Monday, November 25, 2019

Early humans slaughtered by our ancestors were ‘first victims of sixth mass extinction’

Like modern humans, Neanderthals are members of the Homo genus. They inhabited Europe and western Asia between 230,000 and 29,000 years ago (Image: Getty)

We humans are an inventive lot, but we really do like to kill each other and anything else unlucky enough to share this planet with us. 

Now it’s been claimed that the first victims of our species’ bloodlust may have been other humans. 

Today there is only one type of human on Earth: Homo sapiens. But just 300,000 years ago there were at least eight other types of human living on Earth, ranging from Neanderthals, the huge hulking hunters adapted to hunt in Europe’s freezing steppes, to the Denisovans of Asia. 

Could we be to blame for their deaths and should these extinct humans be regarded as the first victims of the sixth mass extinction feared to be imperilling the natural world right now?

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