Paleontologists: people settled in Australia before Europe

MOSCOW, Nov 2 RIA Novosti. Paleontologists have found the first evidence that ancestors of Australian aborigines left Africa and first spread to Australia 50 thousand years ago, much earlier than they got to Europe or Asia, said in an article published in the journal Nature.

Today, there are two main hypothesis of the colonization of all continents of the Earth by our predecessors. The main is the so-called “middle East” option, or “Lebanese corridor” in the language of math. Supporters of this hypothesis believe that humanity first entered the middle East through the territory of Lebanon, and only then inhabited Europe, Asia and America.

The alternative hypothesis of multiple “waves” of migration, there are genetic evidence that modern humans could first appear in South Asia, Australia and Micronesia. In accordance with it, the first people appeared on the shores of Australia and the Moluccas about 45-50 thousand years ago.

Dzhils Hamm (Giles Hamm) from La Trobe University in Melbourne (Australia) and his colleagues showed that in fact Australia could be populated by CRO-magnons for 10 thousand years earlier, to find the earliest date tools and traces the life of CRO-magnons on the Earth outside Africa.

Hamm and his colleagues made this discovery by conducting excavations to the South of lake Eyre in Central Australia, in the region with a dissonant name of Adnyamathanha. Here is the cave Warraty, where the authors found Parking ancient people, who lived, presumably, in the earliest stages of settlement “South of the earth” by aliens from Africa.

Here scientists found a lot of traces of stay of people the charred shells of EMU eggs and a large “terror birds”, which probably ate the companions of the cave implements, including some that are quite simple and complex flakes, minced with a treated surface and location for mounting handles. In addition, the cave has been also found traces of gypsum and ochre, which was probably used by the inhabitants Warraty as paints and thin bone of a kangaroo, sharpened by the ancient people and turned them into needles.

Since the human remains in this cave was never found, scientists had to resort to trickery to assess the age of the tools, measure it by how long spent shells under the Ground after they fell into the fire of the inhabitants of the cave. It turned out that people got into Warraty unexpectedly long time, at least 46 thousand years ago, and most likely, about 49 thousand years ago.

Accordingly, the fact of human habitation in the arid centre of Australia, where the climate was harsh, even 50 thousand years ago, means that the first Homo sapiens entered on the “southern continent” much earlier, about 60 thousand years ago and spread through it much faster than today, say scientists.

This is not the first evidence that ancient people could have left Africa much earlier than we believed, and to settle on the Land in different ways. So, in 2011 paleogenetic Eske Willerslev decoded the genome of Australian aborigines and found that their ancestors had penetrated into its territory over 40-60 thousand years ago, tens of thousands of years before people appeared in other regions of the Earth.

At the same time, paleontologists from England found in the territory of Oman, lying hundreds of kilometers South of the “Lebanese corridor,” the remains of the CRO-magnons and their Parking lots that existed on the Arabian Peninsula about 100 thousand years ago. All this increasingly makes anthropologists to take a new look at long-known and well-known cultural monuments and remains of ancient people, and new finds such as the discovery of Hamm and his colleagues.

Interestingly, the discovery of this cave was another argument in favor of the fact that the arrival of man in Australia has caused mass extinction of the local megafauna. In addition to the shells of eggs “birds of terror”, scientists have discovered the bones of a giant three-ton Warraty “superorbital” and two dozen other species of megafauna, which, apparently, were systematically caught and ate the ancestors of the aborigines. Just about 45-50 thousand years ago most of this megafauna disappears, indicating the existence of a relationship between people and their disappearance.