Extinção dos neandertais por exclusão competitiva

segunda-feira, julho 27, 2009

Neanderthal Extinction by Competitive Exclusion

Abstract Top

Despite a long history of investigation, considerable debate revolves around whether Neanderthals became extinct because of climate change or competition with anatomically modern humans (AMH).
Methodology/Principal Findings

We apply a new methodology integrating archaeological and chronological data with high-resolution paleoclimatic simulations to define eco-cultural niches associated with Neanderthal and AMH adaptive systems during alternating cold and mild phases of Marine Isotope Stage 3. Our results indicate that Neanderthals and AMH exploited similar niches, and may have continued to do so in the absence of contact.

The southerly contraction of Neanderthal range in southwestern Europe during Greenland Interstadial 8 was not due to climate change or a change in adaptation, but rather concurrent AMH geographic expansion appears to have produced competition that led to Neanderthal extinction.

Citation: Banks WE, d'Errico F, Peterson AT, Kageyama M, Sima A, et al. (2008) Neanderthal Extinction by Competitive Exclusion. PLoS ONE 3(12): e3972. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0003972

Editor: Henry Harpending, University of Utah, United States of America

Received: May 23, 2008; Accepted: November 19, 2008; Published: December 24, 2008

Copyright: © 2008 Banks et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.

Funding: This research was funded by the National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship Program (grant no. 0653000), and the EuroClimate and OMLL programs of the European Science Foundation. The climate simulations were produced in the framework of the ANR-BLANC IDEGLACE project (ANR-05-BLAN-0310-01) and the CNRS/ECLIPSE project EOLE.

Competing interests: The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

* E-mail: w.banks@ipgq.u-bordeaux1.fr


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