Hobbit

Will ‘hobbit’ tooth yield ancient DNA?

Publication: msnbc.com   Date: January 11, 2011   View Article

Scientists are gearing up to use a new drilling technique to extract ancient DNA from an 18,000-year-old tooth that belonged to a “hobbit,” the mysterious, diminutive creatures that once lived on the Indonesian island of Flores.

If successful, a comparison of the DNA with other species could help resolve disputes surrounding who the hobbits were and where they originated.

“Hobbits” Had Million-Year History on Island?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: March 17, 2010   View Article

Newfound stone tools suggest the evolutionary history of the “hobbits” on the Indonesian island of Flores stretches back a million years, a new study says—200,000 years longer than previously thought.

The hobbit mystery was sparked by the 2004 discovery of bones on Flores that belonged to a three-foot-tall (one-meter-tall), 55-pound (25-kilogram) female with a grapefruit-size brain.

The tiny, hobbit-like creature—controversially dubbed a new human species, Homo floresiensis—persisted on the remote island until about 18,000 years ago, even as “modern” humans spread around the world, experts say.

“Hobbits” Not Good Runners; Proof of New Human Species?

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: May 8, 2009   View Article

Ancient “hobbit” feet contain clues that the diminutive fossil creatures, found on the Indonesian island of Flores, had a very different style of walking than that of modern humans, according to a new analysis.

“In several ways, their feet are what we call in the business ‘primitive,'” said study co-author William Harcourt-Smith, a paleontologist at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.

The finding, he added, is further evidence that the 18,000-year-old fossils represent a unique species, Homo floresiensis.

Eight surprising fossil finds

Publication: MSNBC.com   Date: March 16, 2009   View Article

Fossils help scientists peel back the layers of time to reveal stories of life from eras long past. Sometimes the story goes in an unforeseen direction; other fossils have a “wow” factor simply because they were discovered at all. Check out eight surprising fossil finds.

“Hobbits” Were Separate Species, Skull Suggests

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: January 23, 2009   View Article

The skull of the so-called hobbit discovered on the Indonesian island of Flores in 2003 suggests its owner was an archaic human ancestor, not a diminutive or diseased modern human, according to a new study.

The conclusion stems from a comparison of the skull to the noggins of modern humans and apes, as well as the fossil brain cases of early human ancestors.

Ancient Bones of Small Humans Discovered in Palau

Publication: National Geographic Magazine   Date: March 10, 2008   View Article

Thousands of human bones belonging to numerous individuals have been discovered in the Pacific island nation of Palau.

Some of the bones are ancient and indicate inhabitants of particularly small size, scientists announced today.

“Hobbit” Humans Were Diseased Cretins, Study Suggests

Publication: National Geographic News   Date: March 6, 2008   View Article

The fossils of hobbit-like humans discovered on the Indonesian island of Flores in 2003 may have been severely malnourished modern humans, a controversial new study suggests.

The hypothesis is the latest in a string of diseases proposed to explain the small-bodied fossils.

© 2008-2010 Collected Writings By John Roach