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sparten
13 Jan 06,, 08:47
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060112/ap_on_sc/south_africa_ancient_mystery
Researcher: Early Man Was Hunted by Birds By ALEXANDRA ZAVIS, Associated Press Writer
Thu Jan 12, 1:27 PM ET

:eek: :eek: :eek:

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa - A South African anthropologist said Thursday his research into the death nearly 2 million years ago of an ape-man shows human

"These types of discoveries give us real insight into the past lives of these human ancestors, the world they lived in and the things they feared," Lee Berger, a paleo-anthropologist at Johannesburg's University of Wi****ersrand, said as he presented his conclusions about a mystery that has been debated since the remains of the possible human ancestor known as the Taung child were discovered in 1924.

The Taung child's discovery led to the search for human origins in Africa, instead of in Asia or Europe as once theorized. Researchers regard the fossil of the ape-man, or australopethicus africanus, as evidence of the "missing link" in human evolution.

Researchers had speculated the Taung child was killed by a leopard or saber-toothed feline. But 10 years ago, Berger and fellow researcher Ron Clarke submitted the theory the hunter was a large predatory bird, based on the fact most of the other fossils found at the same site were small monkeys that showed signs of having been killed by a predatory bird.

Berger and Clarke had until now been unable to show damage on the child's skull that could have been done by a bird.

Five months ago, Berger read an Ohio State University study of the hunting abilities of modern eagles in West Africa believed similar to predatory birds of the Taung child's era.

The Ohio State study determined that eagles would swoop down, pierce monkey skulls with their thumb-like back talons, then hover while their prey died before returning to tear at the skull. Examination of thousands of monkey remains produced a pattern of damage done by birds, including holes and ragged cuts in the shallow bones behind the eye sockets.

Berger went back to the Taung skull, and found traces of the ragged cuts behind the eye sockets. He said none of the researchers who had for decades been debating how the child died had noticed the eye socket damage before.

Berger concluded man's ancestors had to survive not just being hunted from the ground, but from the air. Such discoveries are "key to understanding why we humans today view the world they way we do," he said.

Berger's research has been reviewed by others and is due to appear in the February edition of the American Journal of Physical Anthropology.
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Whew, thank god they no longer exist. Otherwise we would need AAA guns whenever we went out! Right to bear arms? More like a necessity. The requirements for civilized living? Food, clothing,shelter, 40mm ack ack.

The Chap
07 Feb 06,, 20:54
http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20060112/ap_on_sc/south_africa_ancient_mystery
Researcher: Early Man Was Hunted by Birds By ALEXANDRA ZAVIS, Associated Press Writer
Thu Jan 12, 1:27 PM ET



Whew, thank god they no longer exist. Otherwise we would need AAA guns whenever we went out! Right to bear arms? More like a necessity. The requirements for civilized living? Food, clothing,shelter, 40mm ack ack.


Brings to mind the large (extinct) eagles of NZ. Not to mention the Thunderbird myths of American Indians. There is a 'photo I recall seeing printed in Fortean Times of some pioneers holding the trophy carcass of a huge raptor. Possibly a hoax. Circa 1870.

One that is not is the semi-fossil from Argentina circa. 2000 of an even larger avian from the late metozoic (sabre-tooth time :) ) with a wingspan of some twenty five feet. A raptor.

Eek indeed!

Lunatock
07 Feb 06,, 21:49
Brings to mind the large (extinct) eagles of NZ. Not to mention the Thunderbird myths of American Indians. There is a 'photo I recall seeing printed in Fortean Times of some pioneers holding the trophy carcass of a huge raptor. Possibly a hoax. Circa 1870.

One that is not is the semi-fossil from Argentina circa. 2000 of an even larger avian from the late metozoic (sabre-tooth time :) ) with a wingspan of some twenty five feet. A raptor.

Eek indeed!

I beleive those were raptors too big to fly, and were known as "terror birds".

RustyBattleship
16 Feb 06,, 20:20
Not to mention the Thunderbird myths of American Indians. There is a 'photo I recall seeing printed in Fortean Times of some pioneers holding the trophy carcass of a huge raptor. Possibly a hoax. Circa 1870. Eek indeed!

There have been reports up to the 1950's of some very large birds still existing in the western part of North America. One is suspected of causing a jet liner to crash when hitting the rudder and throwing the plane out of control. But there has been no official confirmation of that.

I know personally of one sighting that was a case of a camper with no knowledge of California fauna (he was from Minnesota) when he and his group were startled one evening by a huge bird hopping past their campsite. I grilled him for description details and the location of his camp and came to the conclusion that they sighted an extremely rare California Condor that was probably looking for a midnight snack of chipmunk or gopher.

Back in the late 19th century, the Tombstone Epitaph (of Tombstone, Arizona) supposedly printed a picture of a giant bird nailed to the side of a barn with several men with outstretched arms standing in front of it. Probably the same photo you mention.

Again, no official confirmation of that picture. But for every legend, there is something real that started it.

Dreadnought
16 Feb 06,, 20:36
The largest winged predator I ever saw was in Montana. A very large Golden Eagle that actually chased our truck for a few hundred yards before giving up. In my life I have never seen a bird act anything like that toward human beings. I did however have the pleasure of holding one with the glove at an Eagles rock concert that green peace was going to release into the wild. You wont imagine how large these birds are until you are face to face with them. I certanly can believe the fact that man was hunted by its ancestors.

Parihaka
19 Feb 06,, 01:15
Brings to mind the large (extinct) eagles of NZ.
Haast eagle. They were still in existance 300-350 yrs ago. there's skeletons in our local museum of moa skulls where the eagle claws have punched through the skull. This particular moa would, like the ones in the picture, have stood 12-13 feet tall.

http://www.mcmaster.ca/ua/opr/nms/newsreleases/2005/med/haasteagle.jpg

And guess what? we,ve got intact DNA from their eggs. On the one hand I've love to see these babies fly but then I think, do I really want my 5 yr old carrying around a shotgun to protect herself from them? :eek:

Amled
19 Feb 06,, 01:39
Haast eagle. They were still in existance 300-350 yrs ago. there's skeletons in our local museum of moa skulls where the eagle claws have punched through the skull. This particular moa would, like the ones in the picture, have stood 12-13 feet tall.
And guess what? we,ve got intact DNA from their eggs. On the one hand I've love to see these babies fly but then I think, do I really want my 5 yr old carrying around a shotgun to protect herself from them? :eek:
Facinating parihaka, I knew of the Moa and heard of the extinct eagles, but not the size of them!
Don't blame you for being hesitant to have them brought back. Just think if they had the same disposition (attitude) as the Golden Eagle Dreadnought described above.
Never mind a shotgun, you'd need to equip your cars with multibarrel anti-air artillery! :eek: ;) :biggrin:

sparten
19 Feb 06,, 07:46
As I pointed out, 40 MM ack ack would be a necessity.
Dalcons have attacked people in Pakistan, but so far only injuries no deaths have resulted.

Parihaka
19 Feb 06,, 08:32
As I pointed out, 40 MM ack ack would be a necessity.
Dalcons have attacked people in Pakistan, but so far only injuries no deaths have resulted.
Ah Sparten, you'd take all the fun out of it. Japanese Katana, single shot shotgun, or even if you're game a south American Bola but 40MM ack ack? Where's your sense of adventure man?

Parihaka
19 Feb 06,, 08:34
The largest winged predator I ever saw was in Montana. A very large Golden Eagle that actually chased our truck for a few hundred yards before giving up. In my life I have never seen a bird act anything like that toward human beings. I did however have the pleasure of holding one with the glove at an Eagles rock concert that green peace was going to release into the wild. You wont imagine how large these birds are until you are face to face with them. I certanly can believe the fact that man was hunted by its ancestors.
That is one beautiful bird.

sparten
19 Feb 06,, 11:05
Ah Sparten, you'd take all the fun out of it. Japanese Katana, single shot shotgun, or even if you're game a south American Bola but 40MM ack ack? Where's your sense of adventure man?
I have had enough fun with the Leopards that have made Islamabad an eatery.
On a more serious note, I would love to see some of those in real life, I saw a Royal White Falcon once. Huge!

Dreadnought
21 Feb 06,, 20:35
That is one beautiful bird.

Kind of fitting to us humans, alot of the things we find beautiful are just as dangerous to us. ;)

The Chap
22 Feb 06,, 03:58
The Argentine spec. was not one of the Evil-ostritch family. It was a flying nightmare. I shall endeav. to find a photo. It really does resemble the 'pic with pioneers.

By the way, thank you all for showing I'm not quite mad yet! :)

Anyone for a cryptozoo. thread? Given we are a widely dispersed bunch it might be interesting. A buddy has a girlfriend researching pigmy jungle elephants north of Ghana. No-one knew they existed 'til 15 yrs ago! :)

I have chums who swear they have seen big cats in Essex. :confused:

Anything from small to large. Tas. Tiger up to Megaladon (Sydney habour: early twenties?)

Giant Hogs count for those in the American south. :cool:

Any Canouk reports of the Wendigo will not only chill my blood but force me to buy an air ticket. :cool: :)

RustyBattleship
22 Feb 06,, 06:11
As I pointed out, 40 MM ack ack would be a necessity.
Dalcons have attacked people in Pakistan, but so far only injuries no deaths have resulted.

Who do you think you are? Peter Sellers? LOL that's what he used for Dove hunting in the movie "The Magic Christian".

Dreadnought
22 Feb 06,, 15:49
Every now and then they spot a big cat in NewJersey/Delaware/Pennsylvania. Most are false alarms but they have in fact photographed a mountain lion roaming around. I guess the missing cats and dogs blew his cover.

Then ofcaourse theres the myth of the Jersey Devil. ;)

Dreadnought
22 Feb 06,, 15:54
That is one beautiful bird.

Yes Parihaka it was very beautiful bird to hold and watch how fast his/her eyes and head would move about and identify its surroundings. When they showed its wingspan (not while i was holding it) of approximately 7'-0 it was amazing. They say the power in their wings is just incredible with the amount of lift they supply. :)

Parihaka
22 Feb 06,, 22:00
Yes Parihaka it was very beautiful bird to hold and watch how fast his/her eyes and head would move about and identify its surroundings. When they showed its wingspan (not while i was holding it) of approximately 7'-0 it was amazing. They say the power in their wings is just incredible with the amount of lift they supply. :)
I wouldn't have picked you as a Green Peace member though Dreadnought :biggrin:

Dreadnought
23 Feb 06,, 14:15
I wouldn't have picked you as a Green Peace member though Dreadnought :biggrin:

Who me? Nah no Greenpeace member here. But I couldnt pass up the chance at seeing such an awesome bird of prey up close and personal since my last experience with one was a bit scarey. :biggrin: