When the Sea Saved Humanity

Scientific American never ceases to amaze.  Their August issue’s takes readers inside caves near Mossel Bay, South Africa where Curtis Marean, a paleoanthropologist with the Institute of Human Origins at Arizona State University, and his team have been making ground breaking discoveries.

In “When the Sea Saved Humanity,” Marean asks the reader to imagine that Homo sapiens once were an endangered species in Africa, struggling to survive cold, harsh, dry conditions. Yet, during this ancient climate crisis — at some point between 195,000 and 123,000 years ago — humans survived along the southern coast of Africa where shellfish and edible plants were plentiful.

“With its combination of calorically dense, nutrient-rich protein from the shellfish and low-fiber, energy-laden carbs from the geophytes, the southern coast would have provided an ideal diet for early modern humans during glacial stage 6,” writes Marean in the cover story billed by Scientific American as the “untold story of our salvation.”

As an added bonus, Scientific American has added an exclusive multimedia feature to their website.  Readers are given access to videos, audio and pictures that shed more light on the exciting discoveries made by Marean and the SACP4 Team.

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