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Thread: Humans fled to the mountains during the last Ice Age

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    Humans fled to the mountains during the last Ice Age


    Quite interesting, and a choice that most archeologists/anthropologists wouldn't have predicted.

    "People in Ethiopia did not live in low valleys during the last ice age. Instead they lived high up in the inhospitable Bale Mountains. There they had enough water, built tools out of obsidian and relied mainly on giant rodents for nourishment."

    In the current issue of Science, the researchers provide the first evidence that our African ancestors had already settled in the mountains during the Palaeolithic period, about 45,000 years ago."

    At around 4,000 metres above sea level, the Bale Mountains in southern Ethiopia are a rather inhospitable region. There is a low level of oxygen in the air, temperatures fluctuate sharply, and it rains a lot. "Because of these adverse living conditions, it was previously assumed that humans settled in the Afro-Alpine region only very lately and for short periods of time," says Professor Bruno Glaser, an expert in soil biogeochemistry at MLU. Together with an international team of archaeologists, soil scientists, palaeoecologists, and biologists, he has been able to show that this assumption is incorrect. People had already begun living for long periods of time on the ice-free plateaus of the Bale Mountains about 45,000 years ago during the Middle Pleistocene Epoch. By then the lower valleys were already too dry for survival."

    Using this data, the researchers were not only able to show that people have been there for a longer period of time; the analyses may also have uncovered the reasons for this, too—during the last ice age the settlement of Fincha Habera was located beyond the edge of the glaciers. According to Glaser, there was a sufficient amount of water available since the glaciers melted in phases. The researchers are even able to say what people ate: giant mole rats, endemic rodents in the region the researchers investigated. These were easy to hunt and provided enough meat, thereby providing the energy required to survive in the rough terrain. Humans probably also settled in the area because there was deposit of volcanic obsidian rock nearby from which they could mine obsidian and make tools out of it. "The settlement was therefore not only comparatively habitable, but also practical," concludes Glaser."

    "According to the research team, the new study in "Science" not only provides new insights into the history of human settlement in Africa, it also imparts important information about the human potential to adapt physically, genetically and culturally to changing environmental conditions. For example, some groups of people living in the Ethiopian mountains today can easily contend with low levels of oxygen in the air."

    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

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    these were probably E-M329 the ancestors of the 4,5 ka Mota, and possibly also of there brotherclade ,E-M2/M291 the ancestors of the Bantu

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