Science Friday: U of Minn. professor determines Hobbits are new species
Researchers have only uncovered one skull to research, but have found the skeletal remains of 12 total on the island in a single cave, he says. McNulty believes the small creatures died off 12,000 years ago after a large eruption, but could have existed for 83,000 years before that. Their years of existence mean they coexisted on earth with modern humans.
Comparing the simulation to the original Flores skull discovered in 2003, McNulty and Baab were able to demonstrate conclusively that the original 'hobbit' skull fits the expectations for a small fossil hominin species and not a modern human."
The results of the study suggest that the theorized "hobbit" species may have undergone a process of size reduction after branching off from Homo erectus (one of modern day humanity's distant ancestors) or even something more primitive.
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