Why Are We The Only Humans Left?

Why Are We The Only Humans Left?


Look around and you’ll meet some pretty
smart animals, but there’s no species quite like us. But that wasn’t always true. As recently as 50,000 years ago we walked
the planet along with at least three other human species. Denisovans and real-life Hobbits Homo floresiensis
didn’t leave much behind to know them by, but Neanderthals are a different story. A richer story. The first people to hold Neanderthal skulls
didn’t know what to make of them, until Charles Darwin published his theory of evolution. Like every living thing, modern humans must
have descended from an earlier species, and lots of scientists thought Neanderthals
fit the bill: our primitive, slightly dim-witted ancestor. Ernst Haeckel even tried to name them Homo
stupidus. Other scientists had different ideas, they
rebuilt skeletons to look like cartoon cavemen, instead insisting Neanderthals were some failed,
evolutionary dead end. So: Where do Neanderthals fit in the human
story? Were they a bunch of cotton-headed ninny-muggins? Or were they more intelligent and human
than we give them credit for? And if they were smart, why did they disappear
after they met us? Did Neanderthals really disappear? [OPEN] If you were sharing a subway car with a bunch
of humans and a well-groomed Neanderthal, you might not be able to tell who’s who. Buuuut that’s New York for you. But there were some differences: The big brow
ridge. And huge nose. The weirdly short forearms and shins. And BIG muscles. These were all adaptations to life in cold
northern climates, while our skinny ancestors were built for a warmer, runnier existence. Our bodies are different, but similar enough
that when Neanderthals and our species first met, we would’ve seen something familiar
staring back at us. Neanderthal life carried serious occupational
hazards, considering dinner meant going head to head with wooly mammoths and rhinoceros
like some Paleolithic rodeo riders. Their fossil remains show healed broken bones,
even signs that some were blind, meaning Neanderthal tribes cared for and fed their sick and injured. They even buried their dead. We don’t know if that’s because they were
spiritual, or religious, but Neanderthals definitely weren’t violent brutes. They were caring and social. By 250,000 years ago, there were brains walking
around in Germany as big or bigger than yours or mine… only inside Neanderthal skulls. But if big brains were *everything*, blue
whales would be our overlords! They’re… not, right? Neanderthals used this tool about 200,000
years ago. 150,000 years later their technology had progressed
to this. Not ex actly Steve Jobs. It’s clearly not the size of a brain,
it’s how you use it. Our symbolic thinking, social interactions,
technological innovation, and dad jokes just wouldn’t be possible without our brain’s
ability to fancy words together make. You know: intricate phraseology. Elaborate discourse. Complex language! So could Neanderthals talk? We know that we and Neanderthals share the
same version of a gene, FOXP2, that’s essential for language, but that gene alone isn’t
enough to make a caveman Shakespeare. The shape of Neanderthal brains inside their
skulls suggest they had structures important for speech. Their throats were shaped to make more than
ape sounds. That’s most of the ingredients for *some*
kind of speech and language. But rich communication is possible even without
mouth noises. Scientists think Neanderthals could have exchanged
ideas and told stories by combining simple sounds, musical tones, and rhythmic movement…
just like prehistoric boy bands. [MUSIC] Around 50,000 YA Neanderthals met their very
smart cousins: Us. For five or ten thousand winters and summers,
our ranges overlapped, until Neanderthals suddenly disappeared–poof– about 40,000
years ago. Were we friends? Or enemies? Wherever our nomadic hunting groups clashed
for territory, our species had deadlier weapons. Whereas Neanderthals lived in socially isolated
groups, we readily exchanged technology between tribes, even traded. When it came to innovation and competition
for resources, Neanderthals just couldn’t catch up. Or maybe we just gave them an extinction-level
case of the flu. At their peak, Neanderthal populations probably
never reached six figures worldwide. Like gorillas and orangutans today, they lived
in small, dispersed pockets–which means more inbreeding and less genetic diversity. Maybe Neanderthals were already endangered
when we showed up. Before they disappeared, Neanderthals left
us one present. In 2010, the Neanderthal genome was sequenced
from ancient bones. That genome was compared to modern human genomes. 1 to 4 percent of the genes from ALL living
humans outside sub-Saharan Africa came from Neanderthals. People with sub-Saharan ancestry? No Neanderthal DNA. This tells us Homo sapiens shared a romantic
campfire with Neanderthals and interbred, probably right after our species left Africa,
spreading that Neanderthal DNA as we settled the rest of the globe. Thanks to genetic testing, I know I have more
Neanderthal DNA than 70% of people, which to me is proof that Neanderthals were definitely
intelligent and awesome. So 50,000 years ago we walked beside other
humans. We haven’t completely solved the mystery
of why they disappeared, except to discover that they aren’t totally gone. They live on inside us, the only humans left. But the 7 and a half billion of us alive today
share more than these distant ancestors. We’re a lot more related than you think,
and we’ll talk about that next time. Stay curious. Thanks to 23andme for sponsoring this episode. The name ‘23andMe’ comes from the fact that human DNA is organized into 23 pairs of chromosomes. 23andMe is a personal genetic analysis company created to help people understand their DNA. You can see which regions around the world your ancestors come from, learn how DNA impacts your health, your facial features, hair, even your sense of smell, and how you sleep. You just have to provide a DNA sample by spitting in a tube. I learned that I carry a gene that allows me to smell asparagus odor in my pee, and that I’m likely to have a longer second toe than big toe. Which is true. I have really long toes. But I also learned that one gene I inherited from my Neanderthal ancestors might be a reason I’m taller than most people. You can learn more about your personal DNA story and support our show by going to 23andMe.com/OKAY I studied genetics for my PhD, and learning about my DNA was just… so fun. Let us know if you give it a try. See you next week. This video is part of our special series about the story
of our species: Where we came from, how we’re all connected, and where we’re going. If you haven’t already, check out part 1
and retrace the mysterious path of our family tree. And be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss
any of our videos.

100 thoughts on “Why Are We The Only Humans Left?

  1. Hmm I heard that Europeans came robe by admiring with sapiens. I mean we have a lot of race mixtures…maybe they were a part of colonizing Europe.

  2. They overlook the obvious reason we are the only ones left. Just like the Spaniards and Aztecs, etc, diseases were spread when chance meetings occurred and the unlucky sides were devestated. The rest of the species such as neanderthal were just absorbed into the gene pool.

  3. We ate them, gimme a break. We eat everything. 83 billion living creatures annually, right into our stomach's each year. We spread their dna by raping them as well. Its how humans work. Its why we can be arrogant about things today. We are the best killers.

  4. Considering that "civlized" humans bomb and kill each by the millions, sapiens probably thrived on hunting down and murdering neanderthals while stealing and making slave wives of the young girls.

  5. Out of Africa is wrong. These 300,000 year old people are the ancestors of the Negroid Race. At the same time, the ancestors of Caucasians were already spread across Europe and Asia.

  6. "Why are we the only humans left?" Well, it's simple. All the others before us lacked the necessary survival instincts to still be around. I think either we'd have to kill our own selves through some massive nuclear war or technologically superior space aliens would have to wipe us off the face of the planet in order for us to become extinct.

  7. Different races are different species, with Blacks being the most different, maybe due to the lack of Neanderthal DNA…

  8. They’re not different species of humans we’re just humans couse god made us like that and CAVE MEN WERE NOT REAL if you think they are you need to read the Bible Because science lies

  9. We killed the others because we were smarter and we didn't like to see something different but disturbingly similar to us. It made us feel unconfortable to see them. We destroy what bothers us. It's that simple.

  10. I think we mass enstiguished the hole neyandetaler spechi cuz we where ALLOT smarter (but some where surely not so smart)

  11. The best-preserved so-called neanderthals were in some caves in Israel come to find out they just had really bad arthritic changes but did the learn adhere catch on? Hell no they're too busy worrying about tenure.

  12. It's not the brain size (cranial capacity) that is important, it is the ratio of brain size to body size that makes the difference.

  13. "The whole world knew, that when those blue eyes sailed out of the north, you had better tie everything down, motherfuckers!"
    -George Carlin 😁

  14. nah I think the 6 type of humans fought over each other with everything dying to get food over the climate change and they all died out then ourselves were left because we got smarter
    The smarter version of early humans probably survived longer

  15. It might have been as simple as fire being more of an aid to us than them. Because they had power-based bodies, they hunted by slowly sneaking through the woods, then jumping out from behind a tree and stabbing whatever was there with superhuman strength. The strategy of a creature with superhuman strength and subhuman stamina, in other words.

    We, being stamina-based creatures, hunted by harassing things on the open plane. We chased and harassed things until they overheated, as we are very good at purging heat.

    If you wage war by setting each other's favored hunting range on fire, guess who is hurt more by this? Yeah, the guys who need to sneak through forest are screwed waaayyy harder by a forest fire than the guys who have their open grasslands burned down.

  16. We all might still be classified as humans but all the different races have different biology you could still said they are different species of humans rather than races

  17. If a computer was smart enough to pass a turing test, it would be smart enough to intentionally fail a turing test ~ some blue whale along the coast of weddell bay

  18. If they can get the dna, why don't they recreate the human/clone it using the dna. I mean they did it for a goat and it kinda worked, even if they don't live long it could answer so many questions.

  19. We're not we still have different breeds of human black, white, brown, red and yellow each with trates skills and body types specific to their own respective groups since each originally came from different climates we adapted accordingly to them same as always sure it's much more hot pot everyone is from everywhere so it's hard to pick anyone out of a crowd but that's evolution again just because there are different races and genders and perspectives doesn't mean there's a superior one that's where people get it wrong rasist and sexiest and anti choice/change people are the real boogie men not the oddballs who call everyone out AKA me just FYI I just ask questions and tell the truth well my truth multiverse wise #PRO-CHOICE forever and ever choice is evolution and the meaning of nature decency and freedom Wabalubadubdub booya boo pro-life/anti-woman booooonah boooo 👿🗡 ☠ 🔥 🖕 ….. Bye 👋 ♥ 😜 yes I'm autistic so are you 🖕 💕 😂

  20. thats offencive like if u know what i mean * whisper* i am talking about how they discribed them as big nose i have a big nose an i am beutiful-ish

  21. Does this make Caucasian and Asian populations hybrids? Maybe white skin came from Neanderthals? Asians are said to be more Denisovan.

  22. If the offspring of 2 unrelated sets of lions and tigers tried to mate they couldnt. But if a great dane and a pitbull or a Chihuahua can. So how could Neanderthals and desenovans and modern humans interbreed and produce viable offspring. Ive never heard of nature having separate species interbreed and reproduce. I could be wrong for sure but wouldnt that make us different subspecies or even the same species?

  23. I love to see creationist RAGING in every scientific video. God doesn't exist, your grandchildren will be atheist haha 🙂

  24. What are the conditions for distinguishing between “Neanderthals” and “Modern Humans”. Appearance is a bad argument because people look very different. Maybe they are non other than us derived from common ancestors being humans but their forefathers decided to apart from their homeland and people and create a lonely independent tribe. That could also be the reason. I don’t see the point between distinguishing between them and us. How they lived and wether they spoke or not is something we can only speculate about. So what’s the point. People of a isolated tribe with a unique genetic composition compared to other people is not something special and is found even nowadays. Whole tribes which isolated themselves from other people could disappear and got extinct due to earthquakes, volcanoes, storms etc.

  25. Dinosaurs becomes chicken(or whatever) because they got food crisis and so that they will just only eat smaller and become healthier (vegies or whatever) and apes,sapiens,bla bla bla bla,,, mate with each other to develop and become smarter, got my own theory

  26. Wait wait I thought some invisible guy we can’t see and who also got a virgin pregnant without sex with his magical powers created man and woman.
    Didn’t he put them in some garden and a talking snake manipulated the girl?
    I swore a two thousand year old book translated hundreds of times said so.

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