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Well I'll Be A Monkey's Uncle

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the blame-killproc-for-the-title dept.

648

killproc writes "A new report suggests that interbreeding between humans and chimpanzees happened a lot more recently than was previously thought. The report, published in the most recent issue of the journal Nature, estimates that final break between the human and chimpanzee species did not come until 6.3 million years ago at the earliest, and probably less than 5.4 million years ago."

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There won't be any controversy here! (5, Funny)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357539)

Scientists: Humans and Apes share a common ancestor.

Creationists: No they don't, God created us all as we are now.

Scientists: To clarify, we're actually descended from the interbreeding between our ancestral humans and early chimps, which created a third, infertile "hybrid" species, the human equivalent of a mule. Though incapable of breeding among its own, the hybrid is believed to have survived by mating with its parent human or chimp species.

Scientists: Oh, and our ancestor's were happily getting up to monkey business with their cousins (so to speak) for four million years after the split!

Creationists: Oh right, that clears that up then! Cheers :-)

(Second scientist line ripped off [guardian.co.uk] from the rather good article on this subject on the Guardian's website.)

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (-1, Redundant)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357584)

I'll take the third road. I firmly believe that evolution occured. I firmly believe that creatures that possess dicks will stick them where ever they can get away with sticking them.

That being said, I don't think we descended from chimps. I've made a rather lengthy arguement about this before and I'm not sure I totally want to get into again, but I just don't believe humans came from chimps.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (4, Insightful)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357620)

That being said, I don't think we descended from chimps. I've made a rather lengthy arguement about this before and I'm not sure I totally want to get into again, but I just don't believe humans came from chimps.

Dude, nobody thinks humans are descended from chimps. Chimps and Humans have a common ancestor (and now the divergence line is a little more blurred).

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1, Interesting)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357741)

I don't think the common ancestor exists either.

The long and short is this. Evolution occurs through one of two means. It is either a means of survival where the parent species is forced to adapt or die. Or evolution occurs through random mutations being passed on.

If you look at the traits that are unique to humans, you're hard pressed to make the arguement of how and when these traits developed via evolution, and didn't develop in other primates.

And my next point again is lengthy debate, but I one I still make. Humans have some really unique aspects about us as a species. We have advanced language. We have art. We have complex emotions and psychology.

Take a look at ants. Ants have lived exponentially longer on this planet than us. Their lifespan is shorter, and in the same period of time, they have more generations than us. And they outnumber us.

Ants have complex societies and even war with each other. Yet, despite the fact that there are TONS more ants on the earth than humans, and the number of generations of ants in all of history, they never evolved to have art or culture.

We believe that with humans that there is a hierarchy of needs. When basic survival instincts are met, we move on to higher pursuits. Ants have few predators, and yet they can eat most anything, including large animals. I've seen footage of a colony of ants taking down a lion. In many cases, basic survival is taken care of for ants.

So, they have had exponentially more generations than us, and survival wasn't an issue. When I asked a professor point blank why the need for art and culture would develop through the course of evolution, he responded that he doesn't believe those traits would stem from evolution.

He had no answer where they came from and he doesn't buy into creationism, but now we have this unanswered question. Something is very unique about humans and the evolution model does not seem to explain us very well.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (2, Insightful)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357809)

Jeepers! For someone who said: I've made a rather lengthy arguement about this before and I'm not sure I totally want to get into again, you do seem to want to get into it again!

You post seems to have the base assumption that the 'goal' (or destination perhaps) of evolution is to produce humans (or at least culture/art/language).

That aint the case.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1)

Darkman, Walkin Dude (707389) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357814)

When I asked a professor point blank why the need for art and culture would develop through the course of evolution, he responded that he doesn't believe those traits would stem from evolution.

Just means my ancestors were some pretty fucking cool monkeys, baby.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (5, Insightful)

pe1rxq (141710) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357823)

You mistake in the way you think about selection.

There is no 'law of evolution' kind of thing that says that a species will involve into something more complex or intelligent.
Natural selection simply works because a certain species is capable to stay in existence.
Sometimes being stupid and just breed is more efficient than being intelligent.
Ants have a complex structure which allows them to spread very efficiently. Knowing how to paint for some reason wasn't needed for them to spread widely and thus such an feature would only result in extra lugage to carry around.
Maybe out species at some point managed to stay alive longer by being a little bit more creative than our cousins. That might have been an factor that resulted in more offspring.

Jeroen

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1)

Distinguished Hero (618385) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357864)

Sometimes being stupid and just breed is more efficient than being intelligent.

See today's society.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357839)

Abstraction is a strong part of the process used in learning. View a set of data, create an abstract theory. Humans happen to be better at it than most animals.

Art is simply one way of expressing these abstractions. Same thing with God - you see a bunch of seemingly miraculous things happening... something must be acting to cause those miracles. Ergo, God.

As to ants vs. humans, well, ants don't have the same needs we do because all ants are moderately simple. They just don't have the neuron mass to act independently. Nor is it likely for them to evolve the neuron mass, because of structural issues re: exoskeletons.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (5, Insightful)

gowen (141411) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357860)

why the need for art and culture
What makes you think there's a need for art and culture? Humans didn't evolve a desire art anymore than kittens evolved an enjoyment of playing with wool. It's the vestige, an accidental by-product, of some things we did find evolutionarily advantageous : intelligence, language, society and imagination.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357761)

You, in turn, are making another incorrect assumption: a lot of people really do think we're descended from chimps or other modern-day apes.

That said, the idea is pretty thoroughly enmeshed in pop culture. It's a fine distinction, but it's fairly potent ammo for people who would use it to push their own, less factually correct, agendas.

These are the people who think that humans are the pinnacle of evolution, the ones created in God's image, etc., instead of merely being the latest expression of the evolutionary process.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1)

grub (11606) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357768)


Dude, nobody thinks humans are descended from chimps.

How else would you explain Michael Sims, smartypants?

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1)

wytcld (179112) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357776)

Now we can as well say that Chimps are descended from humans! (Nice ethical quandry, that.) The new hypothesis is not just that chimps and humans have a common ancestor, but that even after the split you'd have a chimp breed with a human, producing a mule that, while it could not breed with other mules, could breed with either a human (in which case the human children have one chimp grandparent) or a chimp (in which case the chimp children have one human grandparent). Which kinda explains my mother in law.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357650)

That being said, I don't think we descended from chimps. I've made a rather lengthy arguement about this before and I'm not sure I totally want to get into again, but I just don't believe humans came from chimps.

Of course we didn't come from chimps - they have only been around for a few million years. Both humans and chimps came from one (or more) ancestral ape species, who are no longer around.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (1)

Ithika (703697) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357787)

Do you believe that chimps are descended from humans, then? It's just as dishonest an interpretation without the implicit assumption that H. sapiens is at the top of the evolutionary ladder.

Re:There won't be any controversy here! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357680)

The thing is, I believe God created the rules of the game ("nature" as it were). Evolution is part of that. Maybe we did evolve from monkeys, why would that preclude creation?

dude, you're not funny anymore (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357798)

IMHO creationist characatures and jokes are like making fun of windows 3.11.

let it go dude, just let it go. It is possible to have a discussion about science without making fun of creationists. It's also possible to have a discussion of space exploration without making fun of UFO believers.

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357545)

First Post.

Alt Headline (5, Funny)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357546)

I liked my headline a whole lot better:
Was Your Ancestor a Monkey F**ker?

Re:Alt Headline (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357653)

And all this time I thought sheep were the leading candidates...

Re:Alt Headline (1)

szo (7842) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357678)

o/~ "Shut your fucking face, Monkey fucker!" o/~

Re:Alt Headline (1)

ChrisMaple (607946) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357732)

Probably how AIDS spread from monkeys to humans.

Re:Alt Headline (1)

Andrewkov (140579) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357747)

All I can say is thank God there's no monkeys in Kentucky.

Re:Alt Headline (4, Funny)

Colonel Angus (752172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357863)

...I'm pretty sure that's what the monkeys are thinking.

DP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357548)

FP yeahhh

Time magazine says.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357550)

Britney Spears unavailable for comment

*sighs* I for one ... (1)

kkovach (267551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357558)

... welcome our new Hupanzee Overloards!

Correction. (1)

Mathiasdm (803983) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357676)

Humpanzees, that would be.

Re:*sighs* I for one ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357803)

Humanzee - Strength of a human, intelligence of a chimp. Very religious.

How many beers would it take.... (1)

supersnail (106701) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357562)

before a chimp became attractive enough to mate with.
I mean all that hair and leathery lips! Gotta be some serious drinking before she looks good.

Re:How many beers would it take.... (0, Troll)

albyrne5 (893494) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357588)

Chimps give great head, no beers necessary.

Re:How many beers would it take.... (1)

Jeremi (14640) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357804)

Chimps give great head, no beers necessary.


Truly you are a brave and horny man:


link [janegoodall.org] : By age five [chimps] are stronger than most human adults. They become destructive and resentful of discipline. They can, and will, bite. Chimpanzee owners have lost fingers and suffered severe facial damage.

Re:How many beers would it take.... (1)

HermanAB (661181) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357621)

In the dark, all cats are grey...

Re:How many beers would it take.... (4, Funny)

Mr. Bad Example (31092) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357638)

> I mean all that hair and leathery lips!

It doesn't seem to have slowed Paris Hilton down.

Re:How many beers would it take.... (0, Troll)

Cheapy (809643) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357649)

I don't know, ask Laura Bush!

Re:How many beers would it take.... (1)

christopherfinke (608750) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357675)

I mean all that hair and leathery lips!
That would accurately describe several UNIX admins I've known. (Well, I'm assuming about the lips, but the rest is true.)

Re:How many beers would it take.... (1)

avronius (689343) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357765)

Here's a nickel kid. Get yourself a better computer.

(with appologies to Scott Adams)

Re:How many beers would it take.... (1)

invader_allan (583758) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357690)

Keep in mind this was before the invention of beer and the razor, so there was no chemical assistance available, and therefore no exuses for the monkey f***ers! This was also before the evolution of human beings losing hair and facial structure similar to chimps. This is in fact during the early days of Australopithecus, so there wasn't that much difference between chimps and human ancestors at the time. Kind of like second cousins, really, so no excuses should be necessary, and they probably did in fact look good already without the aid of future inventions.

Let's do the best to avoid the flamewar (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357573)

"from the blame-killproc*-for-the-title dept."

Brilliant, Zonk!

*article submitter

And the results of the cross-breeding... (5, Funny)

Tx (96709) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357576)

Why, Steve Ballmer [nyud.net] of course ;)

Huh? I thought it was... (2, Funny)

Colonel Angus (752172) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357605)

Dubya [randomfunnypictures.com] !

Sleeping with the fishes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357578)

I hate every ape I see,
From Chimpan-A to Chimpan-Z
Oh you'll never make a monkey out of me.

Oh, Phil Hartman How I Miss Thee ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357655)

[funky beat of "Rock Me Amadeus" starts playing] Female Nurse Ape: Ooh, help me Dr. Zaius! Apes: [in unison] Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius Oh... Dr. Zaius Ape: Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius. Troy: What's wrong with me? Zaius: I think you're crazy. Troy: Want a second opinion. Zaius: You're also lazy. Apes: [in unison] Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius [one ape starts breakdancing] Oh... Dr. Zaius Ape: Dr. Zaius, Dr. Zaius.

Ballmer (1)

TwistedSquare (650445) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357580)

Anyone feel there is a Steve Ballmer joke to be made here?

Key line from TFA (4, Insightful)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357581)

"The Nature paper joins a wave of work showing that the lines between species are hazy ..."

This is the critical point that creationists who blather on about "macroevolution vs. microevolution" (a distinction without a difference) and "nobody has ever observed a speciation event" (just not true) willfully miss. Species lines are imposed by observers after the fact; they are not inherent in the nature of living organisms.

Re:Key line from TFA (4, Interesting)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357743)

To be honest the creationists' argument always reminded me to Zeno's motion paradox [wikipedia.org] . That's what you get when you try to view a continous process as a number of separate things. Evolution is continous and there is no division/distinction between macro- and microevolution the same way Achilles leaves the turtle behind, contrary to creationist belief.

Re:Key line from TFA (4, Funny)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357830)

I like that analogy!

'Course, most creationists have probably never heard of Zeno's paradox, and if they had to think about it for a while, they'd probably end up concluding that it's irrelevant since Zeno, Achilles, and the turtle were all going to Hell anyway.

Re:Key line from TFA (1)

Seraphim_72 (622457) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357802)

My Plant Systemics professor Dr Doebley [wikipedia.org] said that the greatest amount of speciation occurs when plants and creatures are wiped out. Essentially, if you nuked the amazon rain forest flat, you would create the largest amount of species ever. The reason being is what you quoted. The only way to truly define a species is to stop it from evolving, and that is only possible when they all are dead.

Sera

Re:Key line from TFA (0)

Distinguished Hero (618385) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357816)

Species lines are imposed by observers after the fact; they are not inherent in the nature of living organisms.

Not true; the test for species tends to be rather simple (as far as I know). Breed two animals; if they produce a fertile offspring, they are the same species. Some people also suggest having the same number of chromosomes, and nucleotides per chromosome as a prerequisite; however, this is not required for the first definition to hold (especially outside mammals) and is disputed by a lot of people (in amphibians and plants for example). Link [wikipedia.org]

Old news... (2, Funny)

DeafByBeheading (881815) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357589)

This is not news [bushorchimp.com] .

3.5 million years? (5, Funny)

caffeinatedOnline (926067) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357590)

According to my wife, it happened just last night...

Re:3.5 million years? (1)

wtansill (576643) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357753)

According to my wife, it happened just last night...
Which of you is the chimp?

Earth Time Line (1)

LoudMusic (199347) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357591)

I'm sure there are better ones on the `Net, but this one [historyoftheuniverse.com] seemed 'good enough'. Gives an idea of the time frame these scientists work with. 5.4 to 6.3 million years ago was ... a long fucking time ago. But in the grand view, not really that big of a deal.

Misleading (5, Insightful)

Reckless Visionary (323969) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357592)

What this shows is that there was likely interbreeding between the ancestor line of humans and the ancestor line of chimpanzees. Unfortunately, all the headlines I've read skip that distinction and dive right into "humans and chimps interbred." They were not either modern humans or modern champanzees, and were likely much closer in genetics and appearance than we are to modern chimps, even though even now we are very close genetically after 5 million years of divergence.

Re:Misleading (4, Informative)

homer_ca (144738) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357716)

Yes, the headlines saying "humans" are just dumb. They're probably talking about species like Australopithecus [wikipedia.org] which are far from being humans. They evolved a pelvis that enabled them to walk upright, but their brains were 35% the size of a human brain.

Re:Misleading (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357853)

THey still exist, just look at the Republican party!

more alt headlines (2, Interesting)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357594)

A sampling of real headlines courtesy of Google News:

Gr-ape lengths made in human DNA study [canoe.ca]
Men mated with chimps for 1m years [telegraph.co.uk] (now that's endurance!)
A chimp off the ol' block [torontosun.com]
Chimps & Early Man couldn't stop lovin' [sploid.com]
Grandma Manimal [corante.com]

And they keep going and going...

Mod Title Up! (2, Insightful)

Shadow Wrought (586631) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357600)

What a great way to start off the day with a laugh!

There are some pictures of a man/chimp hybrid (2, Funny)

Clockwurk (577966) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357602)

here [bushorchimp.com]

*blush* (5, Funny)

Rob T Firefly (844560) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357606)

A new report suggests that interbreeding between humans and chimpanzees happened a lot more recently than was previously thought.

That was weeks ago, and it was on a dare. Let's speak no more of this.

Re:*blush* (2, Funny)

slushbat (777142) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357669)

So it's true, you did fuck a human! Pervert!

Re:*blush* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357710)

Tarzan!?!? Does this mean you don't love me any more? To be or not to ble. a;dslj..

Re:*blush* (2, Insightful)

Whiney Mac Fanboy (963289) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357750)

A small zoo acquires a rare gorilla, who quickly becomes agitated. The zookeeper determines that the female ape is in heat, but there are no male apes available for mating.

The zookeeper approaches Rob with a proposition. "Would you be willing to have sex with this gorilla for $500?" he asks.

Rob accepts the offer, but only on three conditions: "First, I don't want to have to kiss her. And second, you can never tell anyone about this." The zookeeper agrees to the conditions and asks about the third.

"Well," says Rob, "I'm gonna need another week to come up with the $500."

At last! (5, Funny)

gowen (141411) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357607)

Robin Williams' body hair explained.

Re:At last! (1)

A beautiful mind (821714) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357835)

He bought it on auction from David Hasselhoff.

Chimp Poontang (1)

MikeMacK (788889) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357609)

It is not known why human ancestors would have begun mating with chimpanzee ancestors again, or why they would have stopped.

Yeah, I heard that once you've had Chimp Poontang you just can't get enough...

Re:Chimp Poontang (1)

xSauronx (608805) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357707)

so once you go chimp, you never go limp?

/cringes

Re:Chimp Poontang (1)

Mr. Bad Example (31092) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357718)

> Yeah, I heard that once you've had Chimp Poontang you just can't get enough...

I believe you mean "orangutang".

Thanks! I'll be here all week...

Damm Dirty ape (5, Funny)

tsunamiiii (975673) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357610)

Take your stinking paws off me, you damned dirty ape!

Chimps ARE NOT MONKEYS (4, Informative)

Hamster Lover (558288) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357635)

I know the headline was probably meant as a joke, but before the Creationists go, um, ape on us it should be noted that Chimpanzees, Gorillas, Bonobos, Orangutangs and Man are all "great apes", evolved from earlier species. Apes evolved from Old World Monkeys about 25 million years ago.

Apes are differentiated from monkeys by their larger brain size, versatile shoulder joints, and lack a tail.

Re:Chimps ARE NOT MONKEYS (2, Funny)

Daniel Dvorkin (106857) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357746)

The creationists will go ape anyway. Pounding their chests, screeching, throwing shit ... that's just what that particular group of (not-so-)great apes does.

a lot of quick nooners (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357641)

"Take your stinking paws off me, you damned dirty ape!" Oh sorry you must be my cousin...

Heh. (1)

stonecypher (118140) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357646)

And now you know why the Scopes monkey trials. (By the way, it's only 6.3 weeks ago in Kansas.)

Indian epics and mythology speak about this (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357663)

Indian mythology especially the epic Ramayana says exactly this. Infact one of the major roles in the epic is perfromed by a half man-half monkey species.

EEE EEE OOO OOO (1)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357664)

estimates that final break between the human and chimpanzee species did not come until 6.3 million years ago at the earliest, and probably less than 5.4 million years ago.

Did someone forget to inform Michael Jackson?

President denies family ancestors. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357683)

Mr. President I present this as evidence of your lies!

http://www.bushorchimp.com/images/pic39.jpg [bushorchimp.com]

Note to the Anti Trolls: THIS IS SUPPOSED TO BE A JOKE, NOT ANTI-BUSH.

this isn't news this is... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357693)

called black people.

It's an honest mistake (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357694)

She was hot, the lights were low, and we were drunk.

I'm thinking less. (4, Funny)

Gulik (179693) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357699)

...final break between the human and chimpanzee species did not come until 6.3 million years ago at the earliest, and probably less than 5.4 million years ago.

They should go to the mall sometime and revise their estimate accordingly.

Too soon! (1)

Zildy (32593) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357715)

Oh sure, and I was just starting to get over it. Yeah, we had our ups and downs but doesn't everyone?! I thought we were going to be together forever! Now, my psychiatrist says I'm well on the road to good mental health again and you bring this up! Christ, it was 5.4 MILLION YEARS AGO...why do you have to keep reminding me?!

Oblig (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15357729)

"A new report suggests that interbreeding between humans and chimpanzees happened a lot more recently than was previously thought."

Jane Goodall?

Get your hands off me (0, Redundant)

ettlz (639203) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357734)

you damn dirty ape!

Hold it a second! (4, Informative)

anzha (138288) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357744)

John Hawks [johnhawks.net] , a professor of anthropology, has a pretty sound and harsh refutation [johnhawks.net] of the article. It looks like, if John is to be followed, that this is some pretty wishful thinking and sloppy work.

He has a follow-up [johnhawks.net] post on his weblog as well.

i think i found a answer to AIDS! (1)

Maxhrk (680390) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357745)

.. is to interbreeding with chimps again. Let hope it helps us on that one. :p

More recent evidence (2, Funny)

Bombula (670389) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357763)

I thought the last 2 US presidential elections were evidence of much more recent human-chimp interbreeding. Did I miss a meeting or something? Maybe it was orangs...

Big deal (0, Redundant)

manifoldronin (827401) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357769)

The report, published in the most recent issue of the journal Nature, estimates that final break between the human and chimpanzee species did not come until 6.3 million years ago at the earliest, and probably less than 5.4 million years ago.
Come back after you pushed it down to 5.4 years ago!

Maybe it was the shepards? (2, Informative)

shotgunefx (239460) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357770)

Hell, some people [thesmokinggun.com] are still screwing animals so I wouldn't be that suprised.

I AM a monkeys uncle... (1)

thewiz (24994) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357782)

I have a niece who is very skilled at climbing and swinging from trees!

You all have it wrong (2, Funny)

a_nonamiss (743253) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357793)

Please, you unenlightened folks all have it wrong. It's an indisputable fact that the Flying Spaghetti Monster implanted that genetic information in Humans and Chimps just to make it LOOK like we're evolved from a common ancestor. He's so sneaky!

Arrrrrrrr matey...

This report seems nonsensical (1)

magicjava (952331) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357806)

This report seems nonsensical

Interbreeding occurs rarely in nature, certainly not to the extent that it changes and entire species, as the article claims to be the case with humans.

Also, interbreeding usually occurs between closely related species in the same Genus. This article is claiming interbreeding between two fairly distant species. Humans and chimps are not in the same Genus, Tribe, or Subfamily. You have to go all the way up to the Family level before humans and chimps merge.

Generally, the conclusion seems to be hogwash. But if it is true, it's a profound discovery affecting much more than just our understanding of chimps and humans. It affects our understanding of how distant two species can be and still interbreed. And it suggests that some species would be far, far more prone to this distant interbreeding than anything we see in nature today even amoungst closely related species. It would also suggest that such distant interbreeding can produce viable offspring.

Misleading (4, Insightful)

Shihar (153932) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357807)

I hate to quibble, but the summary is not quite right. It isn't like there were chimpanzees, humans evolved "up" from chimpanzees, and the chimpanzees remained the same. This isn't how evolution works. What happened was that a single species broke into two separate species. Both species continued to change and evolve. A chimpanzee has done just as much "evolving" as a human has, it just went in a different direction. Whatever the case though, if you were to compare a chimpanzee ancestor to a human and a modern chimp, you would find that you are looking at three very different species.

I am not saying that human evolution isn't teh pwn, but keep in mind that things don't "branch" like in a tree where the original branch remains. When things branch they move off in different directions and the original species before the branch is lost.

happened a lot more recently... (1)

idiotdevel (654397) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357817)

... desperate slashdotters

Chappelle calls BS (1)

Wylfing (144940) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357837)

Linky. [metacafe.com]

MySpace... (1)

owlnation (858981) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357843)

...evidence of the Missing Link?

I Never Thought I'd Say this But... (1)

good soldier svejk (571730) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357845)

Bush was right! [scienceblogs.com]

Now if we could just figureout how to make a human-chimpanzee hybrid with four butts.

So (0, Redundant)

OSS_ilation (922367) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357847)

... what was it that I hooked up with after a particularly drunken in college a few years back?

The secret of monkey island! (1)

Dr. Max E. Ville (821578) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357852)

Finally!

Or, in some parts of California... (0, Redundant)

adrianbaugh (696007) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357856)

5.4 minutes ago :-P

It's Just Their Imagination (1)

fncll (159437) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357868)

I can understand the poverty of the imagination that makes normal people see a headline like this and scratch their heads in truly chimp-like fashion. After all, it is hard for many people to contextualize just how much closer together man and chimp once were.

But I don't understand creationists, whose entire religious belief is founded upon an incredibly intricate imaginary world that even they can't agree on, being so shocked. So we have a shared ancestry with monkeys. This is somehow impossible while the parting of the Red Sea, water into wine, the resurrection-- these are not?

Not Chimps but Proto-chimps (2, Insightful)

tygt (792974) | more than 8 years ago | (#15357869)

Let's not forget that Chimps have been evolving along the way as well - I highly doubt that they were the same 4.5-6.3M years ago as they are now, so *our ancenstors* were doing it with *their ancestors*, not with "chimps" per se.
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