• Question: y were humans formed x

    Asked by chloed123 to Angela, Gabriele, Karen, Maria, Shane on 15 Nov 2013.
    • Photo: Karen McCarthy

      Karen McCarthy answered on 15 Nov 2013:

      Humans were formed by evolution, but who knows why? Humans evolved slowly over many years, by gaining skills and knowledge. From sharing an ape-like ancestor, we slowly began to stand up straight, hunt for food, make shelters, use fire and farm animals! All these processes and learning have made us what we are today, and who knows what we may continue to evolve into?

    • Photo: Angela Stevenson

      Angela Stevenson answered on 15 Nov 2013:

      That’s a tough question! It’s really just all up to chance… well to a certain extent. Animals evolve from one to the next, we do so based on adaptations so that we can better survive in our environment. The fittest individuals survive and pass on their genes to the next generation. In fact, our ancestors were very different from us… we started off as fish, then to a lizard like tetrapod and eventually to a species that looked human like. But if we were to rewind time and go back several million years, we might not evolve to exactly what we are now. It’s a really tricky question that you ve asked. Good job Chloe 🙂

    • Photo: Shane Mc Guinness

      Shane Mc Guinness answered on 19 Nov 2013:

      Hi Chloe,
      for a second I thought it was an equation you had written!
      So, we as humans are apes! Just like gorillas, chimpanzees and orangutans. We have evolved over millions of years, from an ape that probably looked something in between a gorilla, chimp and a human. It’s very complicated and involves things called genes that we all carry as part of our DNA.
      Evolution happens when a particular thing about you allows you survive slightly better than another person. And if you can live long enough to pass these things on to your children, then you’re slightly better at surviving than someone else. And because of this, these things about you that were different become part of the whole population! Remember, you don’t evolve as a person, but your children and their children (and their children…..) will slowly become different. That’s evolution!
      Because human medicine is so good nowadays and we’re good at changing to deal with our environment now, in your own generation, evolution is MUCH slower in human beings than it used to be. In prehistoric times, if humans were not strong they quickly died and did not pass on these genes to their children. With medicine we can now treat these people with medicine and better food. But it is happening. For example, humans are much taller than they were only a hundred years ago and red hair is becoming less and less. Some even say that the shape of our skeleton has changed over the last few hundred years!
      All this happened over 3 million years ago though. However, the species that looks most like us (Homo sapiens) is from about 400,000 years ago only. After that, some people think we continued to evolve into Homo sapiens sapiens (meaning wise, wise man) which is who we are today!