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Fish Swam the Sahara, Bolstering Out of Africa Theory
Live Science ^ | December 29, 2010 | Charles Q. Choi

Posted on 12/29/2010 11:42:33 AM PST by decimon

Fish may have once swum across the Sahara, a finding that could shed light on how humanity made its way out of Africa, researchers said.

The cradle of humanity lies south of the Sahara, which begs the question as to how our species made its way past it. The Sahara is the largest hot desert in the world, and would seem a major barrier for any humans striving to migrate off the continent.

Scientists have often focused on the Nile Valley as the corridor by which humans left Africa. However, considerable research efforts have failed to uncover evidence for its consistent use by people leaving the continent, and precisely how watery it has been over time is controversial.

Now it turns out the Sahara might not have been quite as impassable as once thought - not only for humanity, but for fish as well.

"Fish appeared to have swam across the Sahara during its last wet phase sometime between 10,000 and 6,000 years ago," researcher Nick Drake, a geographer at King's College London, told LiveScience. "The Sahara is not a barrier to the migrations of animals and people. Thus it is possible - likely? -that early modern humans did so, and this could explain how we got out of Africa."

Using satellite imagery and digital maps of the landscape, the researchers found the Sahara was once covered by a dense network of rivers, lakes and inland deltas. This large waterway channeled water and animals into and across the Sahara during wet, "green" times. [See digital map of ancient Sahara]

(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...


TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: africa; godsgravesglyphs; herodotus; lakechad; laketritonis; lakeyoa; sahara

1 posted on 12/29/2010 11:42:34 AM PST by decimon
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To: SunkenCiv

Only yesterday ping.


2 posted on 12/29/2010 11:43:28 AM PST by decimon
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To: decimon
Fish may have once swum across the Sahara, a finding that could shed light on how humanity made its way out of Africa, researchers said.

They rode on the backs of fish?

3 posted on 12/29/2010 11:47:35 AM PST by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: decimon

The Sahara was once a lush forest, IIRC.


4 posted on 12/29/2010 11:47:37 AM PST by James C. Bennett
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To: decimon
So the Sahara dried out because all those animals disrupted the climate driving their SUV's?

Whodathunkit?

5 posted on 12/29/2010 11:47:47 AM PST by thulldud (Is it "alter or abolish" time yet?)
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To: decimon

Every once and awhile I feel like quacking. Does that help?


6 posted on 12/29/2010 11:48:43 AM PST by Jim 0216
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To: decimon
The Sahara is the largest hot desert in the world, and would seem a major barrier for any humans striving to migrate off the continent.

As if the climate of this region would be identical during a major Ice Age.

7 posted on 12/29/2010 11:50:03 AM PST by Sherman Logan
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To: decimon

If the Sahara once contained large bodies of water, couldn’t that be an indication that there was once more water (in liquid form) on the surface of the earth than there is now?

And wouldn’t THAT potentially be an indication that the polar ice caps were SMALLER at that time than they are now?

And wouldn’t THAT be an indication that the earth was WARMER then than it is now?

Could that be POSSIBLE?


8 posted on 12/29/2010 11:52:36 AM PST by WayneS (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: thulldud

That is s common misperception. In fact, Chuck Norris lit a fart in what was once known as the Sahara Forest.


9 posted on 12/29/2010 11:55:55 AM PST by tumblindice (Baby made a boom-boom)
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To: decimon

10 posted on 12/29/2010 11:56:36 AM PST by null and void (We are now in day 706 of our national holiday from reality. - 0bama really isn't one of US.)
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To: James C. Bennett
The Sahara was once a lush forest, IIRC.

I'm impressed if you remember at all. ;-)

11 posted on 12/29/2010 12:05:14 PM PST by decimon
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To: decimon
Of course. They are still in the desert on the planet Arrakis (Dune), they are called Sand Trout.
12 posted on 12/29/2010 12:05:54 PM PST by fish hawk (RINO-plasty: Congressional surgery done with a vote.)
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To: decimon

Hello ... ? It’s called the “Flood of Noah” ...


13 posted on 12/29/2010 12:06:44 PM PST by Scythian
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To: decimon

But did they do the backstroke?


14 posted on 12/29/2010 12:10:03 PM PST by SouthTexas (A Merry and Blessed Christmas to All!)
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To: Scythian

Shhh! That’s Biblical! ;)


15 posted on 12/29/2010 12:10:31 PM PST by ReneeLynn (Socialism is SO yesterday. Fascism, it*s the new black. Mmm Mmm Mmm.)
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To: Scythian
Hello ... ? It’s called the “Flood of Noah” ...

The place was once a forest. The fossils aren't just those of fishes.

16 posted on 12/29/2010 12:11:49 PM PST by James C. Bennett
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To: decimon

How exactly do climate conditions which persisted some 6 to 10 thousand years ago impact the out of Africa theory? It seems that climate over the last 500,000 years (or perhaps 7mil years) would have to be considered together with the fossil record. Cherry picking doesn’t usually work.


17 posted on 12/29/2010 12:20:25 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: tumblindice
Chuck Norris lit a fart in what was once known as the Sahara Forest.

I thought it was the Argonne Forest.

18 posted on 12/29/2010 12:28:51 PM PST by thulldud (Is it "alter or abolish" time yet?)
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To: decimon
hmmm...

The cradle of humanity lies south of the Sahara, which begs the question as to how our species made its way past it.

Archaeologists Claim to Have Found Oldest Human Remains in Israel

Avi Gopher, who led the team, told Agence France-Presse that it calls into question the widely held view that modern humans originated in Africa.

19 posted on 12/29/2010 12:28:53 PM PST by loboinok (Gun control is hitting what you aim at!)
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To: JimSEA
How exactly do climate conditions which persisted some 6 to 10 thousand years ago impact the out of Africa theory? It seems that climate over the last 500,000 years (or perhaps 7mil years) would have to be considered together with the fossil record.

They seem to be looking at the last wet phase as an indicator of conditions in prior wet phases.

20 posted on 12/29/2010 12:30:20 PM PST by decimon
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To: decimon

My objection is to the way studies are presented in the news. I don’t really question the idea that most of our ancestors originated in Africa. Overemphasis of isolated studies does no one any good. You may recall the assertion that dry woodlands prompted bipedal ape evolution while now this seems to have come after bipedal apes roamed the rainforest.


21 posted on 12/29/2010 12:41:39 PM PST by JimSEA
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To: thulldud

Yeah, Chuck did the same thing to Aragorn’s forest. Really P.O.’d a lot of Ents.


22 posted on 12/29/2010 12:49:04 PM PST by tumblindice (Obama has signed-off on parts of our southwest)
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To: decimon
The cradle of humanity lies south of the Sahara, which begs the question as to how our species made its way past it...

DUHHHH!

The easiest way past the Sahara is to follow the banks of the Nile from Lake Victoria!

23 posted on 12/29/2010 12:59:30 PM PST by SonOfDarkSkies
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To: tumblindice

Now, that’s ENTertainment!


24 posted on 12/29/2010 12:59:59 PM PST by JRios1968 (This is me, in a nutshell: "Let me out of here...I'm trapped in a nutshell!!!!")
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To: WayneS
Just a couple of random observations:
  1. A mere 2400 years ago or so when Rome and Carthage were squaring off for dominance of the then-known world, much of North Africa was tropical or savanna. Hannibal's famous elephants weren't carted over the Sahara Desert, they were native to the Numadian Empire, roughly what is modern-day Algeria and Morocco.
  2. All those Roman chariots and charging elephants evidently stirred up so much dust that the tropics turned arid and the savanna turned into the Sahara desert.
  3. Other scientists believe the African continent once abutted South America, so man could just as easily have walked to modern Brazil as crossed the Sahara (which didn't exist in its present form) or floated down the Nile.

25 posted on 12/29/2010 1:12:47 PM PST by Vigilanteman (Obama: Fake black man. Fake Messiah. Fake American. How many fakes can you fit in one Zer0?)
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To: WayneS
They ate the fish and drank the water. I think the Saharan pluvials are not timed by the Ice Ages in general but rather lag behind the period of greatest glaciation ~ which affects Earth's wobble.

California also has recurring pluvials.

26 posted on 12/29/2010 1:25:59 PM PST by muawiyah
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To: decimon

27 posted on 12/29/2010 1:58:59 PM PST by anymouse (God didn't write this sitcom we call life, he's just the critic.)
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To: decimon

Maybe during the flood of Noah


28 posted on 12/29/2010 3:05:36 PM PST by RnMomof7 (Gal 4:16 asks "Am I therefore become your enemy, because I tell you the truth?")
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To: ADemocratNoMore

thanks ADemocratNoMore for the link in FReepmail.

How Earth’s orbital shift shaped the Sahara
Physorg Earth Sciences | December 21, 2010 | Anuradha K. Herath
Posted on 12/21/2010 10:03:52 AM PST by LucyT
http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2645897/posts


29 posted on 12/29/2010 3:24:52 PM PST by SunkenCiv (The 2nd Amendment follows right behind the 1st because some people are hard of hearing.)
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To: decimon

· GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother, and Ernest_at_the_Beach ·
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Thanks decimon!

Just adding to the catalog, not sending a general distribution.

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30 posted on 12/29/2010 3:26:17 PM PST by SunkenCiv (The 2nd Amendment follows right behind the 1st because some people are hard of hearing.)
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To: tumblindice
Really P.O.’d a lot of Ents.

That's OK. Their bark is worse than their bite.

31 posted on 12/29/2010 9:31:05 PM PST by Erasmus (Personal goal: Have a bigger carbon footprint than Tony Robbins.)
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