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Old 10-08-2007, 12:06 PM   #48
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Albuquerque, NM
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Originally Posted by Ray Jones
Originally (read: 3 million years ago) we supposedly were omnivorous gatherers/scavangers living in the forests. We only came out of the forrest when there was nothing to find (like small animals, insects, eggs but also fruits, nuts, roots, other eatable parts of plants) to seek for these things in the savannah/grasslands. Most probably we also found (and ate) bigger dead animals and what carnivores left over.
Seems to support my belief of bourderline herbivore/omnivore since we were scavengers who ate mostly small kills.

As for the "relatively small canines" which were supposedly only good for "relatively small prey", we've never really used them to hunt down whatever sized animal, but used them to eat whatever sized animal. Also, it's not uncommon that teeth for instance grow back with the time when they are not necessary for a species to survive. But since we (still) have them, and it's pretty obvious what these are used for, we were "meat" eaters from the begin with (omnivorous, but still).
Another thing that supports that we were (and still are) only specialized for a mix of an omnivorous/herbivourous diet is how our teeth don't grow back after we loose our permanents.

It is believed that we somehow developed from the Australopithecus, whose ancestors seemed to be "fruit eaters" only. As mentioned earlier, due to climate changes it happened that the rain forest slowly disappeared and the environment changed towards being Savannah/grassland offering only harder to eat and digest nuts, roots, seeds instead of juicy fruits and leafs of the rain forest.
Fruit eaters only, eh? Haven't heard that one before.

Current theories support the idea that there were different genetic lines of the Australopithecus. Some, like Australopithecus africanus (believed ancestors of the species homo), became omnivorous, and some became herbivorous (like Australopithecus robustus) and specialised to being able to eat hard roots and the like, which was for that climate and environment a perfect "move". However, climate changes happen to be of a somewhat static nature, and thus the very specialised herbivorous line was not able to adapt fast enough and accordingly at some point and went extinct.

What does that mean? The ancestors of our ancestors were most probably herbivores specialised to eat fruits (only). But our (direct) ancestors only had the chance to make it because they were able to eat omnivorous, and with that had the better diet compared to hard and dry plants. Is it naturally to eat meat? Yes. And without we would most probably not be here discussing this.
Is it natural to eat meat? Some meats are very natural: while others are artificially put into our diet. Still, all this supports that we are specialized in eating small animals, due to the size of our canine teeth, and lots of vegies, due to our many dull teeth such as the mollers. So, it definitely supports that we're carnivorous to a certain extent: hence my theory, weak omnivore/herbivore. Meat seems to be much more of an evolutionary trait than eating plants.

Either way, thanks for the research ! Especially the tid-bit about fruit eaters... never knew that. It's odd too since eating too many fruits now-a-days isn't really good for us. Then again... if we all excersized a bit more... that probably wouldn't be too much of a problem
Plus, we may have thrown off much of the "yolk" that depended on eating fruit as time passed. blah blah blah [/rant]

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