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Humans were once an endangered species

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posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 03:18 PM
We are now 7 billion on this planet, but some time back 1 million years, imagine that there were only 18000. If these 18000 had become extinct we may not have been here to read this.

We were the endangered species and maybe evolution chose us to be the species that rules the earth.

There are mass extinctions on the earth every some million years, but I am sure the next time this mas extinction happens, humans will not become extinct.

I wonder if humans had become extinct then which species would have been the rulers of earth? And would they have evolved the same way that humans did?

Scientists from the University of Utah in Salt Lake City in the U.S. have calculated that 1.2 million years ago, at a time when our ancestors were spreading through Africa, Europe and Asia, there were probably only around 18,500 individuals capable of breeding (and no more than 26,000). This made them an endangered species with a smaller population than today’s species such as gorillas (approximately 25,000 breeding individuals) and chimpanzees (an estimated 21,000). They remained an endangered species for around one million years.

Modern humans are known to have less genetic variation than other living primates, even though our current population is many orders of magnitude greater. Researchers studying specific genetic lineages have proposed a number of explanations for this, such as recent "bottlenecks", which are events in which a significant proportion of the population is killed or prevented from reproducing. One such event was the Toba super-volcano in Indonesia that erupted around 70,000 years ago, triggering a nuclear winter. Only an estimated 15,000 humans are thought to have survived.


posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 03:27 PM
I'm sure I read at some point last year that, at one time in history a couple of hundred thousand years ago, the Human population was around 2,000. They figured this out from some DNA studies, although that field of science is not my forte.

Looks like we have been quite fortunate at several points in time, although i would imagine that our adaptability and mental abilities go some way to helping us survive what would wipe out other creatures.

posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 03:35 PM
I just want to point out that our current numbers (7 billion ,that is) do not make us a "non-endangered species". There are enough red buttons in the world to make this a grim reality, just as more predators/worse conditions could have made it when supposedly there were only 2 thousand.
So we should be always vigilant. For predators, worse conditions and fellow humans with itchy fingers and button-access.

posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 03:56 PM
Adam and Eve was the first male/female created so if you're just counting the both of them, then yes human beings would be considered an endangered species. I guess not really in danger though until sin made its appearance.

[edit on 22-1-2010 by Water-tastes-good]

posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 04:06 PM
Mods please move this thread to the science forum groups.

posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 04:08 PM
reply to post by sunny_2008ny

Damn!! nature missed that golden opportunity to save itself, now the virus has spread so far.

posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 04:12 PM
The Lake Toba eruption (a strato-volcano) ushered in an ice age and nearly wiped out H. Sapiens, reducing our collective population levels to a mere 5,000 - 10,000 families. It's known as a genetic choke point.

Lake Toba erupted 75,000 years ago in modern day Indonesia. All the races we have today span from those families.

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