Author Topic: CAS Contest 2013 : 07 - Neanderthal Sims - Derek Cowart  (Read 1150 times)

Offline GoslettM

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CAS Contest 2013 : 07 - Neanderthal Sims - Derek Cowart
« on: July 28, 2013, 02:46:06 PM »
Derek Cowart
by GoslettM

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Biography: They had great vision and terrible social skills
Neanderthals' brains were about the same size as our own. So why weren't they able to adapt? A study led by Robin Dunbar of the University of Oxford found a possible answer in their large eye sockets. Neanderthals may have been forced to devote a lot of their brain power to their eyesight to see in the dim, foggy north. It's possible that it limited the development of their frontal lobes, making it so "they could only maintain a social group size of around 115 individuals, rather than the 150 that we manage," according to New Scientist.

If they had been able to socialize better, they might have survived. Dunbar's colleague, Eiluned Pearce, told Discovery News that "smaller social groups might have made Neanderthals less able to cope with the difficulties of their harsh Eurasian environments because they would have had fewer friends to help them out in times of need."