Science Seat: You could have been a furry beast
Humans were once covered in hair, just like chimpanzees, anthropologists say.
March 15th, 2013
06:00 AM ET

Science Seat: You could have been a furry beast

By Kelly Murray, CNN

Editor's note: The Science Seat is a feature in which CNN Light Years sits down with movers and shakers from many areas of scientific exploration. This is the sixth installment.

As primates, humans were once furry, much like the modern chimpanzee.  But when, and why, did we lose this fur and become "naked"?

Nina Jablonski, professor of anthropology at Pennsylvania State University, studies primate evolution with an emphasis on human skin. Among numerous academic publications, she also wrote the book, "Skin: A Natural History."

CNN Light Years spoke with Jablonski about the evolution of human skin, from furry to naked.  Here is an edited transcript:

CNN’s Kelly Murray: Were humans ever furry like a modern chimpanzee, and how do we know?

Jablonski: Yes.  We, as primates, are furry and because we last shared an ancestor with chimpanzees about 6 to 7 million years ago, and that common ancestor was hairy, or furry.  All of our living relatives are hairy; we are the only naked ones.  It is simply by the principle of parsimony that we can deduce that we were hairy.  Also, we know that we did share a common ancestor with hairy chimpanzees about 6 to 7 million years ago.  So there is every reason to assume that our ancestors were hairy.

CNN: What did our fur look like?

Jablonski: The most likely appearance of the fur is very much like modern chimpanzee fur: Uniformly dark, or black, over the body surface.  There probably wasn’t a sort of contrasting front and back as there are in many animals.  And this dark hair would have been covering lightly pigmented skin.  If we look at a chimpanzee today, what we see if we look under their hair is actually very light skin.  So we have actually reasoned by looking at comparative evidence, that the most likely appearance of the skin in our common ancestor was light skin covered by dark hair, much like chimpanzees have today.

CNN: A lot of your research focuses on human skin pigmentation, but you argue that the study of skin pigmentation cannot be addressed until you understand what happened to our fur.  Why is that?

Jablonski: I consider discussion of the loss of fur to be really foundational in any discussion of human skin.  Fur serves many, many functions for animals, but one of the important functions is that it protects the skin from the sun.  The dark pigmentation in skin, and specifically the most important pigment - melanin - is a good substitute for part of the function of fur.  Melanin is such a superb natural sunscreen.  So the story of pigmentation is integrally linked to the story of the loss of hair or fur.

CNN: When did we first lose our fur and gain this pigmentation?

Jablonski: The human lineage evolved in Africa.  If we start at a starting point of 6 to 7 million years ago, when humans first parted ways from the ancestors of chimpanzees, we have a lot of fossils that indicate that humans were walking on two legs, but they were not modern-looking.  They were fairly short, and they still had quite ape-like body proportions: fairly long arms, relatively short legs.  These were Australopithecus species of various kinds.  They were good bipeds, but they were also capable tree-climbers.  But when we look at their skeletons in detail, it’s pretty clear that they were not active runners.  They could walk on two legs but they weren’t running or striding purposefully across the savanna most of the time, they were sort of living lives that are much like those of chimpanzees: fairly close to the edge of the forest, sometimes going into trees for protection, and then walking for short distances in the open to forage.

We hypothesize that, at that stage in our lineage's evolution, we still would have had quite a bit of body hair, because the reason we started to lose body hair is related to the need for controlling body heat.

It turns out that primates lose most of their heat through radiation from the surface of the body into the environment, and by evaporation of sweat.  The hotter it is outside, the more important sweat becomes, especially if the animal is exercising vigorously and generating a lot of internal body heat.  Internal body heat is good to a point, but you have to be able to liberate excess heat, otherwise your brain, organs and muscles get too hot.

Primates as a lineage almost exclusively use sweating for this purpose (versus other mechanisms such as panting).  There have been a lot of hypotheses made about why we lost most of our body hair.  And I definitely, and many colleagues of mine definitely are of the opinion - based on the environmental, anatomical and genetic evidence at hand - that we lost most of our body hair because of the needs of heat regulation.

CNN: How does sweating cool the body?

Jablonski:  When sweat evaporates from the surface of the skin, the blood in the small veins in the skin becomes cooled slightly. This blood then flows back toward the heart, and that seemingly insignificant amount of cooling of the blood is physiologically very significant, because it brings cooler blood back to the heart, which is then oxygenated by the lungs and pumped back into the circulation, including the brain.  There are quite a few primates that can sweat well, but we are the premier sweaters of the world.

So, we actually have several different lines of evidence to indicate that humans lost most of their body hair when their patterns of activity changed dramatically.  And we see this illustrated beautifully in the fossil record when we look at early members of the genus Homo such as the species Homo ergaster, found in Eastern Africa.

We know from a variety of anatomical studies done by many excellent colleagues that these individuals were long-distance runners and high-speed walkers in open environments.  Studies of the fossils and genetic evidence allow us to deduce that these ancestors would have had excellent sweating abilities.  So by about 1.2 million years ago in the history of our lineage, in the early days of our genus Homo,  we were mostly hairless.  And at the same time, we were darkly pigmented.

The transition from hairlessness to naked skin was accompanied by the acquisition of permanent dark pigmentation. ... You can’t have naked skin that is without protection in a really sunny environment, because strong sunshine, including high levels of UV radiation, is so damaging to so many functions of the skin.

CNN: Without UV protection, would those individuals have developed cancer?

 Jablonski: Well, I think cancer probably wasn’t the main event, because cancer mostly afflicts people after reproductive age.  It takes some time for skin cancer to develop.  Our hypothesis has been that the most important effect was actually the harmful effects that UV radiation has on the B vitamin, folate, which is necessary for all cell division and cell repair, and is really important in the formation of the human embryo.

CNN: There are other theories that bare skin is beneficial for us to communicate with each other by decorating ourselves.  Does that have anything to do with losing our fur?

Jablonski: Right.  We communicate and we decorate ourselves, but those things happen much later in evolution.  Especially the deliberate body decoration aspects.  That’s certainly an added benefit of having naked skin, is that we lavishly decorate it, and we use it as a medium for communication.  But we don’t see that as a causal reason for loss of hair in the first place.

CNN: Why do we get chill bumps when we’re cold or scared, and does that have to do with humans once having fur?

Jablonski: Yes it does.  Those little chill bumps, or goose bumps, are caused by tiny little pieces of smooth muscle in the skin that cause the hairs on our body to stand up.  When we had fur, this was really helpful because when the hairs stand up, it actually increases the insulating value of the hair.  So if a dog is cold, or a squirrel, or a monkey or a chimpanzee is cold, his or her hair will stand on end and that will increase the outer insulation of the body.

Ours is pitiful.  I mean we can see our hairs standing on end, but mostly we just see the skin getting sort of crinkled because of the contraction of these muscles.  The hairs over most of the human body are so fine that they don’t have any effect on insulation whatsoever.  But it turns out that we haven’t gotten rid of all of our hair because those little hair follicles turn out to be absolutely critical for healing of wounds.  Every time we get a cut or a burn or anything that causes an abrasion or a change in the surface of the skin - an injury to the skin - the stem cells come from the hair follicles that enter into the repair of the wound.  So those hair follicles turn out to be like little banks of future skin cells that are absolutely essential to the wound repair process.

CNN: Why do we still have armpit hair, pubic hair and hair on our heads?

Jablonski: The hair on the top of our heads is still a great protection from direct UV radiation.  When you’re standing at the equator, or near the equator, you’re getting the highest levels of sun and UV radiation right on the top of your head.  And so hair absorbs a lot of heat from the sun, and protects the scalp.  Really curly hair is very good at this; really dark hair is good at this.

If you have dark hair yourself, you can verify this by sticking your fingers under your hair when it’s sunny outside.  The surface of your hair gets very hot, but the surface of your scalp is actually quite a bit cooler.

As for armpits and pubic hair, those hairs probably were retained for the propagation of pheromones, the scents that are so important in communication, although we do our best to get rid of these scents by showering every day and using all these products to get rid of smell.  But these scents are really important in subconscious communication between humans.  So these small areas of hair have been retained, but most of the body is naked so as to facilitate the loss of body heat through very rapid evaporation.

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Filed under: Human ancestors • On Earth • Science Seat • Voices
soundoff (616 Responses)
  1. shawbrooke

    Evolutionists never consider that maybe apes developed fur over the millenia and that the common ancestor of human and animals – if there is one – did not have fur. Of course since that common ancestor is unknown, there is no point speculating either way. Too bad that some high school teachers were not better trained in science. The half baked "science" they teach leads people to such silly assumptions and arrogance beyond belief.

    March 15, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
    • Eric

      "evolutionist." Is that kind of like a non-astrologer or a non-alchemist? The fact that we evolved from a common ancestor from other primates millions of years ago has been well established. Did ancestors further back from that common ancestor not have fur? Perhaps they did not, perhaps they did. There is nothing precluding either possibility. If you keep going back far enough you get to animals that certainly did not have fur, such as fish. So "evolutionists" certainly believe that at one point our ancestors did not have fur.

      March 15, 2013 at 7:48 pm |
    • Heat Monger

      "Evolutionists never consider that maybe apes developed fur over the millenia and that the common ancestor of human and animals – if there is one – did not have fur"

      Wrong. Here is why: the genes that grow "fur" on our skin are mostly turned off. Those same genes are on in denisovans and neanderthals. Further, the living great apes all have fur except for us – the closest to us, the Bonobos, have less fur than the less evolved primates. It is easy to see that fur slowly vanishes over time. We still have some fur, just not as much.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:51 pm |
    • xirume

      Creationism has all the answers so why bother speculating at all. right?

      March 17, 2013 at 9:42 am |
  2. Doubtin'Thomas

    The crucial event happened when space traveler aliens passed by Earth and decided to frolic around with the monkeys...

    March 15, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
    • Jessica

      Could you be any more of a racist or a nincompoop?

      March 15, 2013 at 8:19 pm |
    • Chris

      Don't feed the trolls, dear.

      March 15, 2013 at 9:56 pm |
  3. kenny

    because you are an ignorant

    March 15, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
  4. Jimmy

    Person living in today's world says he spoke directly to God. Result: everyone thinks he is crazy.

    Person says he spoke directly to God, but instead of saying it today, said it 5.000 years ago. Result: people not only believe it, but often will spend their entire lives devoting themselves to whatever the crazy guy declared was the statement of God.

    Person living in today's world shows wonderful qualities of wisdom, humility and generosity. Result: person is admired, or taken advantage of.

    Person shows wonderful qualities of wisdom, humility and generosity, but does it 2,000 years ago. Result: person is worshiped as actually being God.

    March 15, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • Jessica

      Jesus would be locked up in a mental ward these days. This thing that gets me is that they all have a personal version of God and those that don't match with theirs are wrong. It's amazing that so many people claim to know what "God" thinks and wants.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:21 pm |
      • adh1729

        They tried locking up Jesus' followers and it didn't work, no matter how many guards they posted.

        March 16, 2013 at 7:37 pm |
  5. Eric

    I wonder if the time we don't have to spend picking bugs out of each others fur counts as an evolutionary advantage. Also, any guy who wears briefs (rather than boxers) and sleeps on his side knows another reason there is hair in your public area other than pheromones.

    March 15, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
  6. jj

    Try No No

    March 15, 2013 at 6:32 pm |
    • Jessica

      Buy a blowtorch for much cheaper than a No No. It does the same thing, burns hair off the body.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:23 pm |
  7. S1helipilot

    I still think the aquatic ape theory makes better sense, the science and logic is sound.

    just sayin'

    March 15, 2013 at 6:01 pm |
  8. Glauber

    Because da ladiez dig da smooveness.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:59 pm |
  9. jaketinback

    Once upon a time there was nothing....then it exploded.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:57 pm |
  10. Jay in NC

    How do you know that as primates, humans were once furry? Is this just a guess or do you have actual proof.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:54 pm |
    • Sean Richardson

      Unless you can prove that the current theory of human evolution is inherently flawed, then you only need to look at the hair on your arms for the proof you seek. Our descendants may have been more or less hairy than we currently think, but Humans did come from ape-like ancestors, which themselves came from more primitive types which are known to have had fur. Somewhere in our past is a furry ancestor.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
      • Contra Archy

        "Unless you can prove that the current theory of human evolution is inherently flawed..." Crime, Sean, don't give these cretins an opening like that!

        March 15, 2013 at 8:37 pm |
    • Heat Monger

      You can sequence the DNA of earlier sapiens and current sapiens, and compare the marker sites on the genome for the hair-producing factors. You can actually test it.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:52 pm |
  11. notts

    Modern medicine has got to be messing with evolution and survival of the fittest. If there really was a need to run long distances and only those humans survived, what happens when the amount of money in your bank account is the only thing that determines if you survive?

    March 15, 2013 at 5:53 pm |
    • Sean Richardson

      In my opinion, we are no longer evolving physically as a species. The future of our evolution will be a story of survival through technology, not survival of the "fittest".

      This is not a new thing though. Human survival has been dependent on our technology since we first started using tools. As soon as our brains and tools allowed us to hold off our natural predators, we were no longer part of that cycle. I am certain we are far less "fit" as a species than we were when we roamed the African plains.... but I am equally sure that our lifespan is longer and our quality of life is better now than it was then.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
      • notts

        Soon there will be a fix for every defect that would have lead to death. And probably they will stop the defects from getting inherrited so that all the decendants don't have to pay for the fix. But then we will be in a situation where you can craft a human from scratch. Any guesses on what they will look like? Money has got to play into that somehow.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:20 pm |
      • SeanP

        Hey Sean,

        We are evolving slowly as demonstrated by the 5th digit on our hands getting shorter on average, and our brain getting bigger putting pressure on our mouth, as we are running out of room for our teeth.

        March 15, 2013 at 7:08 pm |
  12. Woody

    Anyone that thinks we are not mammals is but a fool as this is one reason we need hospitals because we have parts just like other mammals and the only thing that makes us really unique is our thumbs . Hope you never have a limb lost or you will find out very quickly why other animals have to do some things differently than we do . And as far as the fur (still got mine thanks ) !

    March 15, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
  13. ken

    This proves that the book of Genesis is true.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:46 pm |
    • Woody

      All books are and were written by the hand of the human mammal ! And made up by the human mind . If you lived 2000 years ago todays world would scare the heck out of you . The human mind has evolved , at least for some !

      March 15, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
    • okiejoe

      Say, what? You would have to explain that. It sounds as if you have it completely backwards.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
  14. Earthling147

    The idiotic, twisted, nonsensical statements of the creationist fools on this thread are almost beyond comprehension. How is it even possible to believe such utter garbage. Religion is evil. It destroys the individual's ability to think for himself.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:34 pm |
    • ken

      Speaking in such derogatory language only makes your dishonesty more obvious.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:55 pm |
    • Woody

      Religion is actually man made and the bible is a book of compiled stories that were written by people and the bible was not even put together until 300 years after Jesus was born . The stories were written at a time most could not even read . It was also written in Greek . Look it up for yourself as the stories were written by people at a time that if they saw a jet like we have today or a computer they would think it was magic or some sort of god . Back then people did not know the science behind what they were actually witnessing . Some people today still don't get it !

      March 15, 2013 at 6:00 pm |
      • adh1729

        300 years after Jesus was born. Gracious. Even the church fathers were writing 200 years before that.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:42 pm |
      • EmCK

        He didn't say written adh – he said assembled. There wasn't even a consensus by church leaders regarding the divinity of "Christ" until the conference at Nicea hundreds of years after his alleged life ended.

        March 16, 2013 at 8:51 am |
      • adh1729

        "He didn't say written adh – he said assembled. There wasn't even a consensus by church leaders regarding the divinity of "Christ" until the conference at Nicea hundreds of years after his alleged life ended." The "divinity" of Christ is not really a Biblical doctrine. Jesus said, "I ascend to my God and your God", implying he was not God. I Cor 8 states, "to us there is but one God, the Father."

        The book of Luke is a compilation and the book says so. Did Luke live 300 years after Jesus, and 280 years after Paul?
        The early Christian church, in its infancy, braved torture and death for hundreds of years. Did they do that because they were just nuts? You think they didn't know whether Jesus did supernatural deeds?
        I suggest you go start your own church in New Guinea; tell them if they stick their arms into meat grinders then they will go to heaven and be happy. See how many converts you get. Prove that what Jesus accomplished was just a fluke.

        March 16, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
      • Earthling147

        "The early Christian church, in its infancy, braved torture and death for hundreds of years. Did they do that because they were just nuts?"

        Yes, that is exactly why.

        March 16, 2013 at 10:16 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Earthling147 "The early Christian church, in its infancy, braved torture and death for hundreds of years. Did they do that because they were just nuts?' Yes, that is exactly why." Amazing how you know everything so quickly. Speedy research I would say.
        Isaac Newton wrote more on religion than he did on science. If the New Testament was written by lunatics, how come he couldn't see through it?
        Abe Lincoln's second inaugural address is a sermon. It is reported that he prayed all night during the battle of Gettysburg. How come he couldn't see through the lunatic bible? I could give you a hundred examples in the same vein.
        I personally have read every word of the New Testament and memorized about 1/3 of it. I think the book is remarkable. I have read some of the works of the earliest church fathers. I think the story of Jesus as recorded by the gospels is probably true. I am not a Newton, but I suspect that I have a better academic record than 99% of the people posting on this site. Your anti-religious bigotry is really a product of ignorance + emotions, and that is the case for a lot of your fellows. I notice a whole lot more name calling and ridicule than I see sound facts or sound logical arguments. You don't impress me at all. You are a pseudo-intellectual at best.

        March 16, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
      • Earthling147

        If the gospels are true, how do you reconcile the numerous contradictions between them? How do you justify the many different versions of the bible that have resulted from the numerous re-writings over the years? There are at least three new versions being written right now.
        Newton's religious writings are generally unorthodox, not aligning with any faith – he seems to have been trying to make sense out of doctrine that did not make any sense to him. His views are interesting, but irrelevant. His math is fascinating.
        Lincoln was not a scientist, and I really don't see how his religious views are at all relevant.
        Why did a bunch of fanatical Muslims hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings a few years ago? Were they justified in following the teachings of their religious leaders, or were they just nuts? How were they different from your early Christian bravers of torture and death?

        March 17, 2013 at 6:23 pm |
      • adh1729

        "If the gospels are true, how do you reconcile the numerous contradictions between them?" They were written by humans. Honest and decent people yes; but to err is human. The gospels actually are reasonably consistent.
        "Newton's religious writings are generally unorthodox, not aligning with any faith... Lincoln was not a scientist, and I really don't see how his religious views are at all relevant." I cited them as examples of people who took religion seriously, unlike many people on this site who think that religiosity means that the head is put on backwards.
        "Why did a bunch of fanatical Muslims hijack airplanes and fly them into buildings a few years ago?" You won't like me saying this, but I doubt the official explanation of 9/11. The investigation was half-hearted and way underfunded, and it did not seem to me that they were seeking the truth. I can't write a book about it. "Architects and Engineers for 9/11 truth" is a group (with website) that presents a lot of scientific evidence against the official story. I wouldn't bet my life on it, but I doubt the official story.
        It said a lot to me that the earliest Christians had superhuman courage; they of all people were in a position to know if Jesus/Peter/Paul were lying frauds.

        March 17, 2013 at 10:11 pm |
    • Woody

      I was an altar boy by the way .

      March 15, 2013 at 6:02 pm |
    • notts

      Religion is necessary for a lot of people. Count yourself lucky you have a choice. The sad thing is that evolution isn't what it used to be so we are only going to get more different.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
  15. Ehrler Vogel

    I guess if we over look most shirtless Italian males... yeah, humans have lost a lot of fur.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
  16. Paul

    This could be the dumbest think I have ever heard. It makes no logical sense for so many reasons. Dude, do yourself a favor and go back to school. A 3rd grade education will get you nowhere in life but laughed at.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
  17. Layne

    Isn't it hard to type with that sheet on your head?

    March 15, 2013 at 5:27 pm |
  18. Steve Lyons

    She is overlooking the dark skinned apes? Why? Wouldn't that be a valid parallel discussion?

    March 15, 2013 at 5:20 pm |
    • robert hunter


      March 15, 2013 at 9:46 pm |
  19. may40

    The true intelligent people know how far from the truth evolution is. I read the end of the book and our side wins in the end.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
    • ken

      While it is true that evolution is not true, the capability to know this is not only academic intelligence, but also spiritual intelligence.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:51 pm |
    • Heat Monger

      The only thing that matters here is that four independent sciences agree and confirm the evidence for evolution. There is no reason to believe it is wrong, given that everything points to it being true. You have to do better than "we just know the truth". By the way, that Bible TV series is laughable – it just reinforces what a joke the bible is. God can't figure out who to kill with the magic fog without killing a bunch of lambs? God punishes the innocent children of the egyptians just because they are children of the egyptians? The list goes on and on. Horrible stuff.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:56 pm |
  20. Josh

    The utmost irrationality if the theory of evolution will never cease to amaze me.

    The simple answer to the question is that we never had any to begin with.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:11 pm |
    • sbp

      Yeah, yeah, we know. Science is irrational, but believing in magic because it says so in a book is logical.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:25 pm |
    • Eric

      What kind of an idiot believes in a scientific theory with over 50,000+ peer reviewed articles and the entire foundation of modern biology supporting it? But, two pairs of every living creature, their food and water fitting into on a ship and being tended by a handful of humans, living inside a giant "fish," talking snakes, turning water into wine, etc. - that just all makes sense!

      March 15, 2013 at 7:53 pm |
  21. Earthling147

    Well, they are certainly more evolved than you are.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
  22. MC

    Yeah, apparently he got a little too much of the Neanderthal DNA.

    March 15, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
  23. Lexxs

    When you shave the hair off of a monkey their skin is white .

    March 15, 2013 at 5:01 pm |
    • Awesome


      March 15, 2013 at 5:19 pm |
    • okiejoe

      Blacks - Sure I can. You're wrong.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • Donovan

      @BANHB, that is just false. Both of my parents (who were black), had Doctorates in Psychology, that's not something I see primates do.

      March 15, 2013 at 7:25 pm |
    • Jessica

      Lexxs, Well if you had taken the time to actually read the article you would know the answer to your white skin question. It is yes, they have a skin color similar to ours.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:32 pm |
  24. Hugh Jass

    All kidding aside, there's a huge variety in the human species. Native Americans have very little body hair, and people from places like Poland look like bears with beards. I knew a girl once who -wait, I can't tell that one. Sorry.

    March 15, 2013 at 4:58 pm |
  25. Brian

    The ignorance exhibited just astounds me....

    March 15, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
  26. Hugh Jass

    They don't. You are just a fool.

    March 15, 2013 at 4:46 pm |
  27. science

    could have been simple natural selection of attractiveness, the ones going bald may have been more attractive and mated more

    March 15, 2013 at 4:33 pm |
    • Hugh Jass

      More like they marry when they are young and pretty and THEN their hair falls out. Always look at the parents before you marry.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:47 pm |
  28. Paul

    One episode of QI (Quite Interesting) mentioned that a fetus is, at one point, covered in fur, but that the fur is shed at some point and consumed by the fetus, to become part of the first stool. All we need to do is sidestep that one gene and we can have hair humans again! I mean, more hairy that my brother.

    March 15, 2013 at 4:02 pm |
  29. chem major

    Glad to now that it wasn't due to a PETA protest against fur.

    March 15, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
  30. Christmas Angel

    We never had fur! We didn't come from animals. OH my goodness! God created humans they way we are now and we have dominion over all His animals. I guess you can say our minds have evolved though. It's not really evolution though because each time a child is born, he/she has to be taught again and they adapt quickly to whatever time they're born into.

    0 🙂

    March 15, 2013 at 4:00 pm |
    • alan s

      Angel: I hope, when you wrote your comment, you were being tongue-in-cheek.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:18 pm |
    • John

      Maybe god is hairy?

      March 15, 2013 at 4:57 pm |
    • mariadri

      you're deeply mistaken. I feel bad for people who find it necessary to sacrifice logic for faith. I'm sorry, but SCIENCE > religion. you are of course, free to be wrong and believe what you like, but don't try to tell anyone else they're wrong when scientists have proof, and all faith has is "faith."

      March 15, 2013 at 5:04 pm |
    • MC

      You're an imbecile.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
    • Earthling147

      God exists only in your imagination. Religion is evil, it prevents you from thinking for yourself.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:10 pm |
    • adh1729

      "Religion is evil, it prevents you from thinking for yourself." Sure, Newton couldn't think.

      This counterexample demolishes your statement.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:33 pm |
    • adh1729

      "scientists have proof, and all faith has is 'faith.'" Baloney, scientists have proof. Only an ignoramus would say that.

      Here's how the atheist's fairy tale of origins starts: Once, millions and billions of years ago in a chemical soup in an ancient ocean, life began somehow. We know it happened this way, because we are here, aren't we?

      Nice proof. If the Sears Tower was built by atheists, I think they would start construction on the 50th floor and hope that it levitated in the air while they built.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:39 pm |
      • KG

        Funny, since science is what enabled us to build the Sears tower. Religious people would pray for the Sears Tower to appear, then make excuses when nothing happened.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
      • adh1729

        "KG: Funny, since science is what enabled us to build the Sears tower. Religious people would pray for the Sears Tower to appear". Yes, another ignorant one. The Bible advises working, not sitting around praying for miracles to enable laziness.

        You again make the tacit assumption that science and religion are in conflict. They aren't. Most of the great thinkers of Western civilization were religious, and that should give you a clue.

        Specify for me how the beliefs of the Bible conflict with the principles of architecture and engineering necessary to construct a high-rise building.

        March 15, 2013 at 9:40 pm |
      • KG

        Religion and science don't have to be in conflict, but they almost always are. Science and religion are often opposite sides of the same spectrum, and as scientists discover more and more about how the universe works, religion is pushed back further and further. There are fewer blanks in our understanding, and therefore less need for an all-powerful, invisible (and imaginary) creator to fill in the blanks.

        As for origins, there have been several experiments that show that abiogenesis is possible (see Miller-Urey), which is more evidence than religion has ever given.

        The great thinkers of the world were scientific despite religion, not because of it. Children are indoctrinated into religion at a young age, an only the smart ones are able to rise above it and quest for real truth.

        Belief in the bible encourages the use of the same explanation for every mystery: "God did it." That's not an mindset that encourages the thinking necessary for complex engineering.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:00 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Religion and science don't have to be in conflict, but they almost always are." I am a middle aged physician. I worked for several years in a science lab. I have been religious most of my life. I fail to understand how, Love your neighbor as yourself, conflicts with, Force equals mass times acceleration. You are kidding me. You have been brainwashed to believe that science and religion are in conflict, by the powers that be. (The same powers that be that started conflict in the middle east, that promote the idea of a war on women, etc etc etc). Divide and conquer is the goal.

        You assume that science will continue to make advances. That is an assumption. Mathematics has not made major advances for centuries now. Western culture is going down the tubes, and the USA is going bankrupt. Our educational system is pathetic. We are taxed to death to support bums and prisoners, and the bums are paid to reproduce. Your optimism might be admirable, but I don't think it is all that realistic.

        You are not aware of a few basic facts: 1) the big bang theory ended up supporting the idea of a creator, when it was found that the parameters of the big bang, and the constants of physics, were exquisitely tuned to allow life to exist. 2) Inorganic matter + blind chance = a living cell, is astronomically absurd, to anyone who really knows biochemistry and cell biology. (I was well-educated in those disciplines). 3) Neo-Darwinian evolution is not a water-tight theory at all.

        "The great thinkers of the world were scientific despite religion" - that is the mantra, for sure. I am a counterexample to your belief. During my years in academia, I was always tops in science and math. I used to get 100 on physics exams when the class average was 48. There is not a shred of evidence that religious belief hinders logical or scientific thought, and I should know.

        March 16, 2013 at 8:47 am |
      • labrat

        If you did so well in physics and math in school, I am shocked that you can be so ignorant about the advances in mathematics that have been happening recently. They are not published in main stream media because, of course, very few people would have the necessary background to understand what they mean.

        But, seriously, have you ever heard of Dirac? or Euler? they came up with their mathematical tools specifically to solve problems in physics and math. Dirac came up with many types of integrals and methods to solve quantum mechanical problems and particle physics problems. And don't try to tell me that the Dirac delta or Hamiltons equations of motions or Lagrange's methods are not significant mathematical discoveries.

        And this is all coming from someone who is not a mathematician. I only know of these methods because I have to use them in physics. If I studied mathematics, I would be able to list many many more for you.

        March 17, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
      • adh1729

        "I am shocked that you can be so ignorant about the advances in mathematics that have been happening recently...
        But, seriously, have you ever heard of Dirac? or Euler?... don't try to tell me that the Dirac delta or Hamiltons equations of motions or Lagrange's methods are not significant mathematical discoveries." Aware of Leonard Euler? of course. Yes I studied the Dirac delta function in the 1990s. Didn't Euler live in the 1700s? Lagrange, a few decades later? Both lived before Gauss, who was at his zenith in the early 1800s.
        My statement, and your reply, are both matters of opinion. I personally believe that the great mathematics was done centuries ago, by Newton/Euler/the Bernoullis/Cauchy/Lagrange/Laplace/Gauss/Abel. I think that the pace of mathematical invention slowed down after the time of Gauss and even more so by the end of the 19th century.
        I used to notice when I was studying math, that the newer fields have a much higher ratio of definitions to theorems. I personally find that unsatisfying. Also, analysis is the field of math that revolutionized the world, and it was half built already by Newton in the 1600s. I don't know that abstract algebra or topology will ever revolutionize the world. Call me a pessimist, but that is my personal opinion. Maybe I am wrong.

        March 18, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
    • Alex

      Yeah and we share this planet with the T-Rex. Also can you tel me how come there's koalas? Did koalas get to Noah's Ark by flying?

      March 15, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
    • adh1729

      "Yeah and we share this planet with the T-Rex." We do not currently share this planet with the T-Rex.

      "Also can you tel me how come there's koalas?" Correct grammar would be, there are koalas.

      Koalas, and all living creatures, come from God. He can create however he chooses, fast or slow. If he chooses to use evolution, then great. I profess to know nothing about the mechanisms that God uses.

      "Did koalas get to Noah's Ark by flying?" Scripture does not mention koalas getting to Noah's ark, or being on Noah's ark. Silence about such silly questions, is eloquence.

      While I am at it, I dare you to design a scientific experiment that proves that no boat with animals ever floated on an ocean several thousand years ago, O devout worshippers of science. Also design a scientific experiment to figure out what Abe Lincoln said at Gettysburg.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:50 pm |
      • SeanP

        We don't need an experiment to know what Lincoln said at Gettysburg, we have the transcript. As for designing a boat to take animals that is just a matter of physics. Calculating on average the size of each animal you choose to include, and the size of the food needed to feed the animal while on board. This is what is absurd about Noah, the argument that the animals were juveniles jut to make them smaller ignores the fact you need to FEED the animals as well. So now you have two of all God's creation and their food on a little bitty boat. And you should see the look on people's faces when I say how badly Johna had to smell coming from the belly of a big fish. Religion fails reality tests again and again and again. The Bible was written on the downside of the Roman Empire. Engineering was fantastic, but the science of chemistry was still alchemy and biology was basically zoology. The stories of the Bible are fine to help teach kids moral lessons, but to believe in their literal interpretation as an adult borders on insanity.

        March 15, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
      • adh1729

        "SeanP: We don't need an experiment to know what Lincoln said at Gettysburg, we have the transcript." I was illustrating to you that science has definite limits, and that it cannot disprove the Bible and cannot disprove all sorts of things. Go ahead and mix your chemicals in the lab; it will not prove anything about the past.

        "This is what is absurd about Noah... you need to FEED the animals as well. So now you have two of all God's creation and their food on a little bitty boat. " Your thinking is small, likely because you know what conclusion you want to reach. 1) Animals don't eat when they hibernate, who knows exactly how big the boat was, or what animals were on board, etc. 2) You can never disprove "God", because you can't put him in a test tube. If God helped Noah, your logic runs out of luck. You and your club are consistently guilty of circular reasoning; you assume that there is no God, then you ridicule the Bible, and then you think that you have proved that there is no God.

        "And you should see the look on people's faces when I say how badly Johna (sic) had to smell coming from the belly of a big fish. Religion fails reality tests again and again and again." The smell of Jonah has nothing to do with anything, and BTW, how long did it last? I guess if you ever smelled bad in your life, then you became unreal and failed the reality test.
        "To believe in their literal interpretation as an adult borders on insanity." If there is a God, then he can do miracles. The Bible is not a book of 100 miracles; it is a book about one God. So, really, you are saying that anyone who believes in a higher being is crazy by definition, because you make the definitions. I smell circular reasoning all the way through.

        March 15, 2013 at 10:01 pm |
      • what?

        "Koalas, and all living creatures, come from God. He can create however he chooses, fast or slow. If he chooses to use evolution, then great. I profess to know nothing about the mechanisms that God uses."

        Whoa – wait, what??? Sooooooo, if you hold this view why on earth then do you have an issue with how the scientists have described how God must have created man? When I was about 10 or 11 years old I was able to reconcile the biblical account with evolution. Makes perfect sense. Even at that age I was able to see that the Bible is full of metaphor. It's a very effective rhetorical and communicative tool. Imagine God explaining evolution to the prophets and them conveying that to the people – how well would that have worked in those times? Or maybe He did – and his messengers couched it in the way most accessible to their people. The Bible has been translated and rewritten scores of times – by people.
        I fail to understand how this issue has become a debate between religion and science. Surely I can't be the only person who believes in both.

        March 16, 2013 at 2:07 am |
      • adh1729

        what?: I actually don't have a major problem with your position at all. I have a problem with the bigots on this site, not with you.

        March 16, 2013 at 8:51 am |
  31. thisistooeasy

    There never has been a "missing link." Many of those commenting here have grown up watching Link in the mirror. There was some time when scientists didn't recognize all the pieces to the puzzle. The presence of variety in the human race is more proof of the theory and concept. Atomic theory is another scientific theory, go to Hiroshima, Nagasaki, and Chernobyl and ask people about scientific theory there.

    March 15, 2013 at 3:58 pm |
    • Eric

      Creationists always complain about missing "links" and "gaps." When the intermediary fossils are found, then it's even worse, because then there are two missing links!

      March 15, 2013 at 7:57 pm |
  32. lolwut

    I am a hairy beast!

    I'm also naked.

    March 15, 2013 at 3:55 pm |
    • Banana_Mc_Ape-face

      pics or GTFO

      March 15, 2013 at 7:59 pm |
  33. JT

    It makes sense to me, but it's only one theory and there are plenty of examples of animals that have found completely different ways of coping with heat loss.

    Take the camel, for instance. Covered in fur. Also, the point about hair on top of the head insulating against heat just reinforces the camel example and pretty much counters the primary reason for hair loss to begin with. A human that was covered in hair would have skin much cooler than someone who simply has more melanin. Also with fat distribution – camels are the complete opposite of humans with extremely concentrated fat deposits so as to avoid insulating their bodies where humans have relatively even fat dispersion (when healthy). They are also more efficient at sweating than humans, even though they don't really sweat all that much. When they do sweat it stays under the fur effectively removing body heat while the fur shields from external heat. Also, have you ever seen a black camel? They are light in color not for camoflauge (they're 7ft tall...) but because lighter colored fur reflects heat (having black hair on the body might protect against UV like melanin, but again that's not something that pressures reproductive survival). If fur/hair evolved for heat regulation it would be light colored.

    We are supreme sweaters... but are we supreme heat regulators? I don't think we can even come close to other mammals when it comes to thermoregulation (we're the only ones that require clothing).

    When I look at other mammals that have no fur – they are mainly aquatic. Then again, there are plenty of aquatic mammals that are quite furry.

    I think it's probably a combination of many things. There are other benefits to hairlessness, like fewer parasites.
    I'm just not convinced on the theory that loss of fur makes sweating work better. People tend to sweat in some of their hairest places and most animals that can sweat also have fur. Sweating has other benefits besides cooling you off, too. Every seen the skit on family guy with the greased up pig? Trying to grab ahold of someone soaked in sweat is about as easy. It also smells – giving off pheremones.

    There seems to be some merit to the theory that sweating is an adaptive method for cooling during extensive periods of excersize vs. cooling during periods of intense ambient heat. The body sweats much more in response to internal temperature rise than it does to your skin heating up from the outside.

    March 15, 2013 at 3:46 pm |
    • JosefKD

      I'm sorry, but this is convoluted, tautologic drivel. D-.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:09 pm |
    • em

      but camels don't run for long distances. Our ancestors began catching our meat by chasing a furry animal until it overheated and collapsed. We could keep running because we were hairless and could run these long distances without the extra fur to make us overheat. So I don't get the camel theory, they dont run all over the place like us, so they didn't need to loose their hair.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • okiejoe

      Also, as the author pointed out, the theory only applies to Primates. Primates include all of the "apes" from lemurs to gorillas and humans.

      March 15, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
      • okiejoe

        Camels do run long distances. But camels are not Primates, they are members of the other group of mammals that kool themselves by panting.

        March 15, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
  34. WillE

    What about the aquatic ape theory? I rarely hear that mentioned though it makes sense. A group of ancestral apes spent most of their time in and around water. To swim better they became more streamlined and lost the fur. They also developed wide paddle -like hands and feet. ****AND a down-turned nose which is a lot better for swimming than a chimp nose. What other explanation is there for a down-turned nose?

    March 15, 2013 at 3:39 pm |
    • MC

      It's been thoroughly discredited.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
      • Layne

        Really? When I wrote a thesis paper on it a year and a half ago it was still unresolved. Care to show me where your info comes from?

        March 15, 2013 at 5:31 pm |
      • S1helipilot

        No, I'm pretty sure it has not been discredited, just ignored. It has not even been very well investigated. The logic/science behind it is very sound. Better than the "thermoregulation theory" described above. Just sayin'.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:40 pm |
    • fyre

      I think that theory has just been ignored, but you're right, it is an interesting one. We aren't built for active swimming like other animals, but I can see hiding in shallow water from predators or hunting in shallow water like a crocodile. Interesting!

      March 16, 2013 at 9:36 am |
    • labrat

      The chimp nose is considered to be pointing in the same direction as ours. All apes have the same classification of nose as Old World Monkeys (it points down). But New World Monkeys have a different shape nose (nostrils point to the side).

      Primates would not have hidden from predators in the water. Our ancestors lived in trees and came down to the ground from there. Most predators either lived in the water (hippo, crocodile) or on the ground (big cats and the like). So the trees were the best place to hide. Without having eyes that are adapted to water, human ancestors would have been useless in the water. Croc eyes and hippo eyes are much better underwater, so they'd see us before we saw them. Also, humans and other primates have relatively low lung capacity (they can't hold their breath for long). So we'd always be popping up for air and be very very visible to both land predators and water predators.

      March 17, 2013 at 11:12 pm |
  35. palintwit

    Tea Party Patriots typically like to get all their bagging and birthing done by Friday. This leaves the weekend free to watch nascar re-runs, have incestuous relations with chimps, or their sisters or their cousins and then maybe even brush their tooth.

    March 15, 2013 at 3:35 pm |
    • Raybo

      What an acute observation!!

      March 15, 2013 at 4:10 pm |
  36. GFBF

    Can you see the resemblance to Heidi Lewis and the chimp?

    March 15, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
  37. GFBF

    EVOLUTION – A process in which something passes by degrees to a different stage (especially a more advanced or mature stage). Where are the stages of different degrees in mankind. If one is missing then it is a theory not fact.

    March 15, 2013 at 3:01 pm |
    • Phazon

      Stop believing in this none sense please it is just a best guess not facts thats why the theroies are always changing.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:20 pm |
      • maximusvad

        When I saw "Stop believing in this none sense please it is just" I thought the proper ending to that would be "a book written by men"...catch my drift.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:27 pm |
      • Johnny

        Translation: I don't know what a Scientific Theory is which means I didn't make it past the first grade.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
      • Atheist

        The word theory in science and how we generally use it as "a hunch" is two complete different things. The scientific word theory is the graduated (top level) evidence of why something happens the way it does. Just like the "theory" of gravity or of electricity or magnetism. Evolution is not a belief, it is a fact. Nobody believes in evolution they simply understand why it is true.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:35 pm |
    • neoritter

      This is what your argument amounts to.

      youtube: watch?v=RxrxnPG05SU

      March 15, 2013 at 3:56 pm |
    • FMD

      So if you are doing a puzzle and one piece is missing, you would say there is no way of knowing what the picture is? I also think there are alot of people who mix up theory with hypotheses.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
    • mykroft

      Evolution is not directed, so evolving towards a more advanced form is not a given. Each species exhibits variations, and natural selection operates on those variations by culling out members that do not survive well in that environment prior to reproduction. If the process leads to a more advanced form, that's great. But, there are organisms that have moved underground (e.g. in caves), and lost features such as eyes because they were no longer useful for survival. In a way they became less advanced, because unnecessary organs require energy to develop and sustain. Members of the species in which these unneeded organs have atrophied have an advantage in this environment, and the trait is passed on.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:09 pm |
      • Eric

        People often do not understand that evolution changes living creatures over time by favoring the ones that can adapt to their environment and survive and reproduce the most successfully. It doesn't mean creatures get "smarter" or "faster" or "better" in any way, unless doing so allows them to survive and reproduce in greater numbers.

        Early humans and human ancestors evolved larger and more complex brains because that gave us a distinct evolutionary survival advantage, just like we gave up the great strength of our primate cousins for a far greater amount of stamina (a chimpanzee is far stronger than a man of the same weight). Perhaps, as predicted in "Idiocracy," in the future our brains will become smaller and less complex as the smartest people pass their genes down less successfully than the dumbest people.

        March 15, 2013 at 8:09 pm |
    • Atheist

      We know of the stages to get to where we are. We aren't "like" apes, we are apes. – Richard Dawkins. The evidence is so much it would be like trying to argue that the earth doesn't go around the sun. The DNA evidence ALONE is enough to fully support this. The simple facts you fail to understand doesn't make it untrue.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:38 pm |
    • Earthling147

      Take a jigsaw puzzle and scatter the pieces across several thousand square miles. Wait about five million years, then go see how many of the pieces you can find. The idiotic dismissal of the FACT of evolution because we haven't found every single skeleton of every individual human ancestor of every species is the same as denying the existence of the original jigsaw puzzle, even when you have found 90% of the pieces. Take your head out of the sand and look around.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:16 pm |
    • okiejoe

      They're all buried in Africa, just because they haven't been found doesn't mean they aren't there.

      March 15, 2013 at 7:04 pm |
      • neoritter

        PSHAW!! Things don't exist simply because you believe in them!

        March 18, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • Heat Monger

      "If one is missing then it is a theory not fact."

      You don't even know what a theory is. Sad. Get an education and come back. Claiming that your god is a god of the gaps doesn't help your argument.

      March 15, 2013 at 8:58 pm |
  38. Hugh Jass

    Jesus Christ, Where is the God Damned Report Abuse button today?

    March 15, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • peridot2

      Wondered the same thing myself. Has it been dispensed with forever? The HORROR!

      March 16, 2013 at 9:24 am |
  39. FISH FRY

    I know some people who still have their fur.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • jc

      Don't make me take off my shirt.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:10 pm |
    • slegend

      Male dominant society forces females to shave their bodies and look like clones and they are obedient in that they do it without question. I do know a few females who are able to think on their own and do not shave and I respect them for that.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:19 pm |
      • Cooramoor

        Heh. I bet they are lonely.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
  40. frespech

    Or quite frankly- as an alternative theory. Heidi Klum with hairy legs and a mustache would not be as attractive.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
    • peridot2

      That's cultural.

      March 16, 2013 at 9:26 am |
  41. Ponder

    I've always heard it's just part of evolution. But what I don't understand is why we evolved to lose our body hair, only to walk around with clothes all the time. That's evolving???? 😉

    March 15, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
    • adh1729

      Guess what? We didn't evolve from monkeys by a process of random mutations and natural selection.

      There is no selective advantage to losing fur and losing a tail, or all sorts of other animal species would have done it.

      Survival of the fittest requires being able to eat and reproduce. Last I checked, mice could do that excellently. Don't kid me that survival of the fittest created a species that could fly to the moon. What does flying to the moon have to do with survival? Do mice need languages with 20,000 words to survive?

      In fact, survival of the fittest would seem to indicate that evolution should go in the direction of simplicity - ie, the bacteria. They are the fittest, and they can survive in all sorts of situations that other species cannot.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:37 pm |
      • mykroft

        Guess what? You didn't read the article, did you? She said we lost fur when we left the cover of the trees, and became adapted to running after prey. Fur makes it harder to get rid of body heat, therefore it is a disadvantage in that environment. Work on your reading comprehension skills before commenting, OK?

        For that matter, try to grasp how evolution actually operates before you display your ignorance publicly.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:20 pm |
      • MC

        Another cretin heard from.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Guess what? Humans and monkeys evolved from a common ancestor. Your foolish beliefs will not change that fact.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:18 pm |
      • adh1729

        "You didn't read the article, did you?" Sure, you saw me skip the article, with your amazing eyes.

        "She said we lost fur when we left the cover of the trees, and became adapted to running after prey." And of course, she knows everything, being the only and only true guide to truth.

        "Fur makes it harder to get rid of body heat, therefore it is a disadvantage in that environment." Hence, fur should have been promptly re-evolved when humans moved north from Africa. Eskimos should have fur a foot thick.

        "try to grasp how evolution actually operates before you display your ignorance publicly." I understand random mutations and natural selection better than you. I got honor grades in genetics, molecular biology, biochemistry, microbiology, etc. etc. Try to grasp the concept that someone else may know more than you, even if they don't believe all of your sacred cow religions.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:29 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Another cretin heard from." "Guess what? Humans and monkeys evolved from a common ancestor. Your foolish beliefs will not change that fact."

        See? All you can do is recite the creed. You are the blind, and you are being led by the blind, and y'all will go into the ditch together.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:43 pm |
      • Earthling147

        I have neither the time nor the inclination to provide you with the education you apparently chose to ignore while you were in school. I suggest you visit your local public library and try reading some non-fiction for a change, instead of your favorite book of fairy tales.

        March 16, 2013 at 4:37 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Earthling147: I have neither the time nor the inclination to provide you with the education you apparently chose to ignore while you were in school. I suggest you visit your local public library..." Public library?? I graduated from state university with honors, did 6 years of math/science/science research while there, and then was valedictorian of my med school class. I suggest you get back to your science fiction.

        March 16, 2013 at 7:41 pm |
      • Dan

        Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

        March 18, 2013 at 10:27 am |
      • adh1729

        "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt." I guess every person that has ever posted on this thread is a fool, and that includes you.

        Refute my facts. Why are human beings the only species with language? calculus? physics? rockets? No fur? No tail? A functional thumb? Yeah, I know, the same tired answer: random mutations, natural selection, millions of years. That is the answer for everything. The omnipotent, infallible, immutable, omnipresent random mutations, natural selection, millions of years; the god of Darwin.

        March 18, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Many species besides humans have languages, see the recent discoveries regarding dolphins' language and less recently elephant communications. Humans are the most advanced at complex communications, which is the primary reason we have been able to develop higher mathematics and technologies. All apes have a functional thumb. Reptiles, fish and birds have no fur. Gorillas and orangutans have no tail, neither do insects. Your posts get more and more imaginative, and resemble reality less and less, the longer you continue.

        March 19, 2013 at 12:48 am |
      • adh1729

        It seems quite obvious to me that 1) humans stand head and shoulders far above all other animals species; 2) humans differ from animals in idiosyncratic ways that have nothing to do with survival or adaptive advantage. These facts should make evolutionists uncomfortable.
        I am no blind advocate of a hyperliteral interpretation of the book of Genesis. I freely grant that evolution may have happened. I also would like freely to point out the weaknesses of the theory. I am a surgeon; I have treated life and death many times. Life differs only a hair's breadth from death. How life could come out of nothing, when there was no life before, has no reasonable scientific explanation at all. The proper operation of even a single cell, is beyond astounding. One single amino acid wrong, in one protein, can kill a human. I am just astonished at your great faith that random mutations and natural selection and blind chance can explain everything. To me, that requires a great deal of faith.

        March 19, 2013 at 11:21 pm |
      • Earthling147

        You are no more a surgeon than I am. No surgeon would claim to have treated death. You realize that one of the basic rules of your nonsense religion is that you are not supposed to lie, right? Have fun reconciling that with your feeble attempts to sound impressive.

        March 21, 2013 at 1:43 am |
      • adh1729

        I flushed 15 years of my life down the drain becoming a surgeon. It is nice that you are so aware that that never happened. Maybe you can give me those years back, and take back all the times that the nurse called at 3 am to tell me that the systolic blood pressure was 160 or the potassium 3.4. Take back the 10 years that my wife was so depressed that it was like being married to a corpse. A reasonable person reading my last post would not have come to the conclusion that I was a fraud or a liar. You are unreasonable, and after this Saturday morning, I will cease replying to you.

        March 23, 2013 at 8:28 am |
    • MC

      I guess you missed the part about temperature regulation. Why don't you try reading the article. Clothing can be removed when you're running around chasing down prey in Africa. Fur cannot.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:43 pm |
      • Buddy

        I guess that explains hairless cats ...

        March 15, 2013 at 5:24 pm |
      • S1helipilot

        It seems like you believe whatever you read. I think you should spend more time reading a wider range of study instead of making comments supporting things that are pretty well just a guess as to why something is the way it is. I suggest starting with the aquatic ape theory, it is based on sound logic/science and doesn't require so much trying to make the result fit the guess.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:47 pm |
  42. palintwit

    Sarah Palin's ancestors had fur!

    March 15, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
  43. libs

    Liberals may have come from monkeys. Quite able to mimic human idiosyncrasies, yet utterly devoid of emotion or higher intelligence...

    March 15, 2013 at 2:40 pm |
    • Earthling147

      Your comment clearly shows your lack of intelligence. I infer that you are one of those brainwashed right-wing religious nut cases. Perhaps in a few hundred generations your descendants will have evolved to a point where they will be capable of rational thought. Too bad about the current generation.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:20 pm |
    • labrat

      Actually apes. We are and we came from apes. Monkeys and apes are not the same thing. There are distinct differences in shoulder anatomy and genetics.

      March 17, 2013 at 11:15 pm |
  44. Tom Winans

    You may have had fur at one time, but my ancestors and I did not ...

    March 15, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • Matt


      You must open your little mind at the possibilities and evidence around you. Unless, your world has 8000 yrs of history and the Ta-Da explanation of God's will. Read the article: 6 to 7 million years ago we split off with other Upper Primates and 1.2 million years ago we became mostly hairless. The sheer immensity of time must have you frazzled. Breathe get it together and realize the expanse of Earth's and Man's history and propagation from other species.

      Oh and lastly, you are an idiot. LOL

      March 15, 2013 at 2:56 pm |
      • frespech

        I will believe you as soon as you can paint me a picture of eternity.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:03 pm |
    • Hugh Jass

      Gee Tom, that's not what your mom says.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
    • MC

      You know d1ck about what your ancestors had, you sad little half-wit.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:08 pm |
    • Earthling147

      Are you an alien? Or maybe a reptile?

      March 15, 2013 at 5:22 pm |
  45. Dana Hill

    "Why did we lose our fur"? You obviously never met my HS GF or you wouldn't be asking this question.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
  46. Badly-Bent

    After I take a shower my wife says it looks like Big Foot was in there.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:35 pm |
  47. Jokesterer

    God is furry?

    March 15, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
  48. obamaphone

    I'd like to have relations with that chimp in the photo. He/she is kinda hot.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
  49. ksingleton101

    Our true ancestors had no hair at all. Once they cross breed with monkeys (we the by product) retained some of the attributes of our mothers. Don't tell me it isn't possible to cross breed we have been doing it for hundreds of years. Our true ancestors where able to manipulate their DNA to match a monkeys perfectly thus creating humans. Get over it people God only created your ancestors not you!

    March 15, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • drinker75

      What the h3ll are you talking about?

      March 15, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
      • ChrisC

        Aliens. Yawn...

        March 15, 2013 at 4:40 pm |
    • Earthling147

      The only place god exists is in your imagination. Stick to reality, please.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:23 pm |
      • adh1729

        At least, that is what you imagine. You haven't a shred of proof.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
      • Earthling147

        I suppose you have proof of talking snakes and shrubbery, and an invisible man in the sky.

        March 18, 2013 at 12:01 am |
      • adh1729

        I never professed to have conclusive proof of supernatural beings. I believe there are many clues, but I don't have a conclusive proof. You are free to doubt if you want to.

        I find it interesting that human beings can make talking cassette players, record players, CD players, etc etc etc; talking inanimate objects galore - but if "God" makes a donkey talk, that is just the most laughable thing imaginable. If man can make an inanimate object emit meaningful sound, then a far wiser and far more powerful supernatural being could do much greater.

        March 18, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
      • Earthling147

        We can easily find a "talking" cassette player, or telephone, and we can easily understand how it is made to "talk" by recording or relaying the spoken word. Please show me a talking donkey.

        March 19, 2013 at 12:53 am |
      • adh1729

        If man can make an inanimate object emit meaningful sound, then a far wiser and far more powerful supernatural being could do much greater.

        The truth of my statement stands. Your inability to comprehend its truth, is your own problem.

        I never professed to have met any talking donkeys.

        Have you ever seen a dinosaur evolve into a bird, or vice versa? Things may have happened in the past, which are not currently happening in the present.

        March 19, 2013 at 11:30 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Claiming something is true without evidence does not make it true. Believing the impossible does not make it reality. I could just as easily say that Superman could survive a nuclear explosion. That will not cause superman to exist, yet I can find innumerable stories about him. There is no difference. Religion is evil, it teaches people to ignore reality and believe the impossible.

        March 21, 2013 at 1:40 am |
      • adh1729

        "Claiming something is true without evidence does not make it true. Believing the impossible does not make it reality." These statements could easily be applied to the idea that inorganic matter plus blind chance, synthesized the first living cell.
        "Religion ... teaches people to ignore reality". St Paul's answer: charity rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth. Jesus: everyone who is of the truth, hears my voice. Loving the truth means accepting reality.
        You are a brainwashed and bigoted victim of an evil system. The trillions of dollars of the true rulers of the world, have bought your brain, whether you can comprehend it or not. Very few people believed the way that you do, even 50 years ago (much less, 100 years ago). There have been no scientific advances to cause this phenomenon; rather, trillions of dollars have been spent to destroy traditional values of Western civilization. As I said, these are my final replies to you. Search for the truth on your own, and I will do likewise.

        March 23, 2013 at 8:44 am |
  50. Hugh Jass

    January 31 is National Gorilla Suit Day. It is NOT just a flimsy excuse to sell more gorilla suits. Arargh!!

    March 15, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
    • Mr. Fonebone

      I love national gorilla suit day! And so does Mr. Freenbean!

      March 15, 2013 at 8:13 pm |
  51. John

    Why do we have hair in places the great apes don't/or have less of. For instance, the face, chest and buttocks?

    March 15, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
    • MC

      I'm looking at the chimp above and he has a beard and way more chest hair than I do. How hairy are you, for crying out loud?

      March 15, 2013 at 4:45 pm |
  52. JMorcan

    This isn't news. Just the same old junk science and guesswork.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
    • K-switch

      Are you lost?

      belief blog is over there =>

      March 15, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
      • frespech

        Yeah and over there as you put it, we would still find you acting all ape like pretending to know so much more than those who have a different opinion than you. If you think the authors views are held by everyone in the scientific community you truly are delusional.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:02 pm |
    • dATRUTH

      because jeebsus told me so

      March 15, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
    • EvinAR

      What was your reading comprehension score on the SAT? Most problems of intensely religious people result from an inability to communicate and repeat back new ideas adopted by the brain. So take a look at your old scores and get back to me.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:30 pm |
    • adh1729

      "K-switch Are you lost? belief blog is over there =>"

      The fossil record is more consistent with progressive creation than it is with neo-Darwinian evolution.

      Cut out the masquerading - your beliefs are a religion. Science does not explain the origin of life or the origin of the universe. You only believe it does because you are utterly ignorant, and therefore you have to believe your priests, who happen to be PhDs. They don't know a whole lot more than you do.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:48 pm |
      • adh1729

        I said nothing about SCIENCE being a religion. I said, "your beliefs are a religion," and you are the silly fellow who can't get 2+2 straight.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:07 pm |
      • MC

        You know exactly nothing about the fossil record. Get help.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:53 pm |
      • MC

        Hilarious. And you spew this ignorance on the Internet, built on principles discovered by "priests" with PhD.

        You're a very sad little man.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:56 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Congratulations, you win the "dumbest post of the day" award. Denying reality will not change reality. Religious nonsense has no place in intelligent discussion. If you want to cuddle up with your bronze age fairy tales, please do so in private, and don't pollute the airways with your drivel. Religion is evil.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:26 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Congratulations, you win the "dumbest post of the day" award. Denying reality will not change reality. Religious nonsense has no place in intelligent discussion. If you want to cuddle up with your bronze age fairy tales, please do so in private, and don't pollute the airways with your drivel. Religion is evil."

        Go ahead, chant the mantras. That is all you have, true believers.

        Religion is evil? How can there be evil? I thought you believed that humans were just collections of molecules vibrating around? How can sound waves emerging from the mouth of a vibrating collection of molecules, be evil?

        Your concept of evil is borrowed from RELIGION, in spite of yourself.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Evil is action intended to cause the detriment of another, either physically or mentally. Religion epitomizes this. In that sense, yes, the concept of evil comes from religion, because all religion has ever done has been to the detriment of the human race. I pity you, you have completely deceived yourself. Don't bother threatening me with your imaginary dooms. they don't exist, and they don't frighten me or any other rational person.

        March 16, 2013 at 5:06 pm |
      • adh1729

        My position regarding the fossil record was derived from prominent statements by paleontologists Gould and Eldredge.

        Against that, y'all can only recite the creed. Impressive indeed.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:22 pm |
      • adh1729

        "If you want to cuddle up with your bronze age fairy tales, please do so in private, and don't pollute the airways with your drivel." My information was derived from modern paleontologists, far from the bronze age.

        Funny that postmodern fairy tales about inorganic chemical soup creating life as we know it through random chemical collisions gets the Nobel prize, and an expression of doubt in such unscientific nonsense relegates one to the bronze age. Methinks the modern human race is evolving back into monkeys, hearing you bigots talk.

        March 15, 2013 at 6:28 pm |
  53. Jojo

    Years ago I read a book :*Ascent of Women*. It explained that many mammals (whales, dolphins, humans, seals, elephants, walruses ... etc), during a 10 mil year dry spell (Pleistocene?), migrated to the coasts to SURVIVE. Thus, some of us lost our fur as we ventured further out in to the water to escape land predators. Ten million years. Some adapted: trunks, flippers, wide feet ... and standing as straight as can be to stay above water. As conditions changed, as they always do, some came out of the oceans ... and some stayed. There is much more to it ...
    Works for me~~~~

    March 15, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
  54. capnmike

    Wonder why every time there is a scientific article on CNN, be it about other planets, evolution, or whatever, some blithering idiot simply HAS to inject the enormous and completely irrelevant lie of religion into the conversation. You want to believe that nonsense, go ahead, but please stop laying it on people who are trying to be sane and sensible.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      Interesting how some primates evolved into human beings, others did not yet we don't see that in any other place in the animal kingdom. What a croc of nonsense. This kind of fantasy science makes theology look better every day.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:48 pm |
      • Theo

        SPA i find it hard to believe u can even type with such a small closed brain

        March 15, 2013 at 5:12 pm |
      • Earthling147

        Phenomenally ignorant. Every species evolved from ancestral species, the lineages converge the further back you go. Some species evolved to swim and aspirate in an underwater environment. Some species evolved to fly. There are lots of different ways to be successful as a species. Maybe if you paid attention in class instead of filling your brain with religious nonsense, you might have a chance to understand.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:30 pm |
      • em

        we don't see that any other place in the animal kingdom??? Seriously? It is EVERYWHERE in the animal kingdom, and plant kingdom too...

        March 15, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
      • labrat

        Some canines evolved into dogs and some did not. Some felines evolved into tigers and some did not. Some reptiles evolved into king cobras and others did not. Some dinosaurs evolved into birds and others died off. Some eukaryotes evolved into multicell organisms and others did not.
        evolution is full of branches.

        March 17, 2013 at 11:18 pm |
  55. obamaphone

    I like it in the bum.

    March 15, 2013 at 2:04 pm |
    • palintwit

      What a coincidence! So does Sarah Palin! That's how she made Trig!

      March 15, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
  56. palintwit

    That's not a very flattering picture of the FLOTUS

    March 15, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • Max: Time Traveller

      That's not even funny.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:58 pm |
      • obamaphone

        That's the fake palintwit again. Don't pay any attention to that ass.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
    • palintwit

      oops, I was typing that just to amuse myself and didn't mean to hit the post button

      March 15, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
  57. castillo

    When she states, "by the principles of parsimony", her viewpoint is prejudiced to the narrow theories she is led to believe. The proof to her darwinian theories are so riddled with holes, it just amazes me that they are taught, as fact in school. Why we lost our "fur", is as simple as a farm pig growing fur and tusks in the wild, in a matter of seasons...Adaptation! Let's not get the two mixed up. Humans can adapt as well as animals. Evolution has yet to be proved, by the most sold proof we have...DNA testing! Until then, it's ALL theories.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:56 pm |
    • Paulwisc

      No, you're simply ignorant and eager to dismiss anything that challenges what you already believe without proof.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:06 pm |
    • Jamie

      Whoops, looks like you accidentally wandered into the science section. If you look to the upper right hand part of the CNN page, you can got to "Life" and then click on "Beliefs". That must be the section you were looking for.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:20 pm |
      • adh1729

        You have plenty of beliefs of your own, unsupported by logic or science. Stop the stupid bluffing.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:54 pm |
    • Michael

      Evolution exists all around us, if you're willing to take your blinders off and see. Consider, for example the finches on Madagascar, which are vaired from the coasts to the highlands entirely due to the different food available. And for your edification, DNA has proven evolution beyond reproach. If you're of European decent, your DNA is upwards of 4% Neanderthal. If that doesn't show evolution, you need to get out more often. Maybe it is becuase you're hung up on the term "theory" ... try to understand that the term refers to accepted thought, shown by experimentation, and different than a hypothesis which just the formulation of an idea, awaiting testing and vetting. You may not believe in evolution, but that's OK, I don't believe in you ...

      March 15, 2013 at 2:26 pm |
      • GFBF

        Evolution is crap science just like gay marriage. If you believe in one you are more likely to believe in the other.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:52 pm |
      • SPA Knight

        Michael, the finches you describe are still finches correct? Are they still eating worms or do they sit around a dinner table and ponder/discuss the merits of the evolution theory or the creationist perspective? Chimps are still chimps and humans were always humans. They did evolve into what we are today but they were human beings and not primates. What seperates us from the animal kingdom is our bodies, soul and mind created in the image of it's creator. And it is good....

        March 15, 2013 at 3:00 pm |
      • frespech

        Adaption and evolution or not synonomous- birds with different beaks-birds that don't fly-birds 6" in length-birds 6' tall are all still birds. Not some flying lizards, some flying frogs or flying pigs. They are all birds.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
    • SPA Knight

      paulwisc, this isn't even science but theoritical nonsense. I would rather hang on to an explanation based on eyewitness testimony than guesswork. Darwinism is fantasy.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
      • WIRENUT

        I like to know what eye witness testimony you have for creationism? since no people were alive at the beginning when god said let there be light. if you think the bible counts eye witness, you are wrong it's hearsay.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:36 pm |
      • SPA Knight

        Jesus was there at the time of creation. In the beginning was the word, and the word was with God and the word was God. Since Jesus is the word made flesh, he was there when the world was created since he is the second person of the Holy Trinity. When he took human form to save your soul, all he said and did was witnessed by those that followed him and those testimonies were evntually written down by those so called primates that evolved into human beings.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:42 pm |
    • Hugh Jass

      "DNA testing! Until then, it's ALL theories." Sorry, but if you accept that DNA is the basic building block of life, you also get evolution in the same package. It's not something you can cherry-pick. The record of our evolution is encoded in our DNA. Also, this fascinating idea of yours that humans would grow a thick fur coat and tusks in a couple of generations amuses me. How exactly do you know this? Are you, by any chance, Bigfoot's nephew?

      March 15, 2013 at 4:01 pm |
      • MC

        Bigfoot's dumber nephew.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:02 pm |
    • MC

      Wow, such amazing ignorance. DNA testing is actually the strongest of all proof of evolution.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:59 pm |
    • Scott

      What are you talking about? DNA testing backs up evolution.

      March 15, 2013 at 5:45 pm |
    • labrat

      We already have DNA testing... We've compared many many species to build genetic trees

      March 17, 2013 at 11:19 pm |
  58. Chuck

    humans never had fur, next

    March 15, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
    • Paulwisc

      Chuck never developed reason. Next.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:07 pm |
    • Jamie

      Depends where you draw the line at "human". Perhaps humans never had fur, but our ancestral species certainly did.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:21 pm |
      • Hugh Jass

        We didn't "evolve" from blacks, as you know. We differentiated slightly into different colors. You and a black man have nearly identical DNA. Genetically you are the same. Sorry to bust up your racist bubble there, Cletus.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:03 pm |
    • Michael

      Check your pits, Buckwheat. "Hair" is nothing more than thin fur. I guess you're not that for from the ancestors after all ...

      March 15, 2013 at 2:28 pm |
    • Dennis

      You never met my uncle!

      March 15, 2013 at 2:33 pm |
    • DuchessFeathers

      I know some very furry humans.......

      March 15, 2013 at 2:34 pm |
      • Evol5

        I believe that we have all probably seen people who look more like a primate than others. We have seen people who look more (ethnic) meaning having a great-grandmother who was Native American and your parents or grandparents have no native-american features but some-how you came out with more tradition features from whatever tribe she belonged to. Some of us retain our ancestral DNA and features more than others. All of us know someone who is covered with hair or has an extra-heavy brow giving them a more ape-like appearance. We also adapt DOGS ALL OF THE TIME UNTIL THE DESIRED TRAITS ARE REACHED. THIS IS ADAPTATION THROUGH BREEDING. SIMPLE STUFF PEOPLE...

        March 15, 2013 at 2:45 pm |
    • fiftyfive55

      Probably right Chuck,considering we still haven't found the missing link proving we descended from apes.That is still only conjecture and NOT fact so God has still not been disproven either. Fact.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:42 pm |
      • MC

        Get help, half-wit.

        March 15, 2013 at 5:03 pm |
    • Barney

      Evolution is a theory, that's all. Just because we have to "accept" the most logical explanation doesn't mean it is true. And if we "evolved", why in the heck are there still chimps running around on earth? Riddle me that.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
      • reddragon

        That's like saying that there since wolves still exist then poodles shouldn't be around.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:40 pm |
      • WIRENUT

        ok here's a answer for you. lets say you have a population of animals spread out across a continent. Now as the continent drifts across the globe part of it moves into a hotter or colder climate. the animals in the part with the new climate will have to adapt/evolve to the new conditions while the rest that animal that are still in that came climate wont.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:42 pm |
      • SPA Knight

        Wirenut – So what your decribing is exactly how the polar bear evolved from the grizzly bear. They adapted to the conditions but they are still bears. The grizzly bear didn't become an eskimo.

        March 15, 2013 at 4:36 pm |
      • em

        we didn't evolve from chimps. We and chimps evolved from a common ancestor. And your question is the same as asking, if the first Americans were originally British colonists, and now the country is all Americans, why are there still British people? Riddle me that!

        March 15, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
    • doughnuts

      Humans still have fur. It's just thinner and (usually) shorter.


      March 16, 2013 at 6:09 pm |
  59. Polar Bear

    Kind of discounts the notion of God altogether, no? That seems ignorant to me e.g. to completely eliminate all of the possibilities.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
    • Paulwisc

      Kind of doesn't - you just see it that way because it's important to you that god is mentioned. Nothing in the article eliminates the possibility of a god, it simply doesn't discuss it, because it's not relevant. This is a discussion of evolutionary mechanisms, not a theology article.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
      • GFBF

        What is the difference in evolution and adaptation.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:55 pm |
    • Chuck

      Tio be a successful Scientist this day and age, you must bend to the Left
      and close your mind to the Right

      March 15, 2013 at 1:55 pm |
      • Paulwisc

        Says the close-minded far right-winger.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
      • Richard

        If we did everything according to the bible or any religion we wouldn't be able to do anything. We for sure would have never invented medicines or planes or TVs. Scientist or people that have questioned anything have always been persecuted by the church. I think it's beneficial that science has finally found it's on foot to stand on and that we no longer live based on fear and lack of understanding. When having a mole on a certain part of your body meant burning at the stake we were all screwed.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:16 pm |
    • ksboston

      I guess the article Polar Bear wants would go somewhat like this:

      Why don't humans have fur?
      Because God made us this way.
      How do we know that?
      A priest/minister/mullah told me.
      The end.

      Pretty short, boring, article, don't you think?

      March 15, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
      • adh1729

        Isn't science fiction so much more interesting, right?

        March 15, 2013 at 10:07 pm |
    • Richard

      This isn't Sunday school. They are reporting on what they know and not on what they can't see or have to imagine. Science is very simple like this.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:01 pm |
    • oneSTARman

      I find it puzzling that people believe – as I do – that GOD created the universe and the Laws that govern its Motion and the forces that shape it; but believe that HE would then abandon all those billions of years of work to Conjure Puppets out of Pixie Dust.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
      • Richard

        That's a cool though. I'm agnostic because I believe there is something out there. We simply don't know what is yet.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
      • Max: Time Traveller

        If God created the Universe et al – who or what created God? In sixty years, I've NEVER heard a sensible reply to THAT one...

        March 15, 2013 at 2:29 pm |
      • adh1729

        It is sensible to believe in a first cause, whether a force, an energy, or a person or what have you.

        Where did God come from?

        Where did the energy for the big bang come from? Where did the infinitude of universes that finally included one with life, come from?

        None of these questions are answerable, and that isn't anyone's fault.

        March 19, 2013 at 11:41 pm |
  60. Max: Time Traveller

    Oh, I see – new comments appear at the TOP, on this website. Sorry, I'm new here. Lesson learned. Apologies for making a point TWICE.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
  61. Just_One

    I don't know about this article; I've seen some very hairy apes at the gym

    March 15, 2013 at 1:33 pm |
    • Michael

      Some are just more evolved than others ...

      March 15, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
  62. are122

    But when, and why, did we lose this fur and become "naked"? <~~I didn't know we did. Why do women still shave their legs? Look at some of the Taliban! Look at my arm pits.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:32 pm |
    • Jamie

      Try reading the article.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:22 pm |
  63. Max: Time Traveller

    Creationists claim the banana is proof of Intelligent Design and cite its conveniently-handled shape and easily-removed skin as evidence.

    Hmm. I'll see your banana and raise you a walnut.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
    • are122

      Physics also points to intelligent design. Primary reason being rocks and gas balls do not come up with laws of physics and mathematics that govern a universe...and Darwin wasn't around when it all happened.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:39 pm |
      • Paulwisc

        No, actually, physics doesn't - you do. Nothing in our present understanding of how the universe evolved requires that there be a god. It is simply a reasoning back on the evidence to try to discover how the mechanism works. You insert a god because you don't understand how it could happen without one, but that just shows that you, and all of us actually, don't understand it all. It may be we never will, but that possibility doesn't logically require that we insert a god.

        March 15, 2013 at 1:57 pm |
  64. fiftyfive55

    I'm still a furry beast.Hair past my shoulders,beard to my belly and I'm quite content and happy this way.Too bad if anyone doesn't like it cause guys like me dont care what people think,we have become proud of not being cattle or the politically correct.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:24 pm |
    • Paulwisc

      Yet it appears that you need to prove it at every opportunity. Otherwise why make your self-congratulatory post?

      March 15, 2013 at 2:00 pm |
      • fiftyfive55

        Are you really a girl ?

        March 15, 2013 at 2:39 pm |
    • Max: Time Traveller

      Damn right. Guys who WAX – for women who fear REAL men – deserve all the PAIN they suffer! Ha-ha!!

      March 15, 2013 at 2:02 pm |
  65. Max: Time Traveller

    Creationists point to the banana as an example of Intelligent Design. They say that its shape and easily "unzipped" casing is tailor-made for man.

    Hmm. I'll see your banana – and raise you a walnut.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:23 pm |
  66. jon

    I believe the last ice age had alot to do with loss of body hair. I think it forced our ancestors in the northern hemisphere to kill other animals for its fur and warmth to survive. Once we started wearing fur to stay warm we no longer grew our own hair and our pigment became white from the lack of sun exposure. Others in the southern hemisphere in warm climates didn't need hair to stay warm and lived out in the open sun instead of the jungle causing the skin to become black from sun exposure.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:18 pm |
    • Chris

      I think you are confused about how evolution works. The primary mechanic of evolution isn't sudden mutation, per se, but rather is a function of extinction. Those of any species with certain traits which allow them to live longer, be healthier, or adapt better to their environment will more often pass on those traits because they will have more offspring. Those offspring who also share those traits will, in turn, have more offspring than those without those traits. The traits which were inferior are passed on less, and eventually get bred out or in the case of a sudden change in environment which is incompatible to those without such a trait, die off.

      tldr: Extinction, not mutation, is the primary driver of evolution.

      March 15, 2013 at 10:44 pm |
  67. Barghest

    Speaking of fur, why is is that women feel they need to shave it all off "down there" these days? Are you catering to pedophiles? No one says that it has to go back to the 70's which was a jungle fest, but can't there be a happy medium? It doesn't look right bald! As for guys who insist on that, What the F is wrong with you?

    March 15, 2013 at 1:15 pm |
    • Maelius

      Pretty common for guys to be all manscaped down below now too. Many women prefer it these days.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:22 pm |
      • Max: Time Traveller

        Plus it makes your junk look bigger (not a problem for me, of course).

        March 15, 2013 at 1:38 pm |
    • fiftyfive55

      No more short and curlies in the teeth.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:25 pm |
    • Max: Time Traveller

      Plus it makes your junk look bigger (not a problem for me, of course).

      March 15, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
    • Max: Time Traveller

      Okay, I think I've got the hang of this website's layout, now.

      This is a SERIOUS comment. The idea that guys who like women sans pubes are paedophiles is NONSENSE. And guys who prefer women with no pubes who think THEY THEMSELVES must be perves need not worry.

      The fact is, men and women have hormones – testosterone and oestrogen. Men have high levels of testosterone: this creates hair that is thin on top – and plentiful over the body. While women have high levels of oestrogen, which gives them a full head of hair on top – and little on their bodies.

      Thus the ULTIMATE man is bald, with body hair like Robin Williams – and the ultimate woman has a MANE of hair on her head and NONE on her body.

      However, both of these creatures are RARE. While male and female hormone levels are BIASED towards their gender, they MUST have SOME of the others' hormones to exist.

      But in a World where people CRAVE the ultimate, men find ANY pubic hair – or other body hair – on a woman to be a MALE trait. Therefore, they like it GONE. It's as simple as that.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
      • Maelius

        I actually don't mind ion women if it is bushy, trimmed, or all gone. You are generalizing and incorrect. Many guys actually don't like it completely bare on a woman.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:43 pm |
      • Umm...

        Are you saying Robin Williams is the most advanced male? That's a scary thought...

        March 15, 2013 at 5:05 pm |
      • Chris

        Ehm... you might want to go back to Biology 101. The genetics which cause baldness are carried on the gender-determining chromosomes, labeled X and Y. Males have both an X and a Y. Females have two X chromosomes.

        Now, the thing which shoots your entire theory to bits: pattern baldness comes from a gene carried solely on the X chromosome. It is a recessive gene, meaning that it only actualizes if there is no dominant gene present. In most cases, such as iris color, this means that you have to carry the recessive gene on both chromosomes of the pair. HOWEVER, this is not the case with pattern baldness in males. While the gene is recessive, the Y chromosome lacks the corresponding gene, thus allowing the recessive baldness gene to have an affect. Women can suffer pattern baldness as well, but it requires both of their X chromosomes to carry the gene.

        tldr: Guys go bald from what their momma gave them.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:05 pm |
      • Max: Time Traveller

        Actually, Robin Williams is the one dent in my principle: he is DEEPLY (and self-confessedly) FURRY (he has to shave DOWN as well as up – on "Mork And Mindy" you can often clearly see the "tide-mark" of curly hair peeping over the neck of his tee-shirt) and is a year older than me – and yet he has a FINE head of (apparently genuine) hair. Go figure...

        March 17, 2013 at 2:03 am |
  68. Hogan's Goat

    My late friend S.W. could invalidate this theory all by himself, He was sent home from seventh grade for having a beard, and by his twenties, he was furred like a grizzly to the point of having to shave his neck down to the clavicle. Then he went bald on top a bit, but that was probably a solar panel.

    March 15, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
  69. sonicmojo

    I haven't lost mine :/

    March 15, 2013 at 1:04 pm |
    • keef

      i don't think this scientist has ever seen a 70's adult video!

      March 15, 2013 at 1:53 pm |
      • Dennis

        Ron Jeremy!

        March 15, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
  70. DrManic

    It is really a pity that Jablonski didn't mention the Aquatic Ape theory.

    There was a short period of time (about 90,000 years that occurred more than 3.5 million years ago) in Africa when there were vast lakes that stretched from South Africa to Libya. Thus, if there were Bonobo-like apes that waded through the waters to collect shellfish, then it makes sense that these creatures would adapt to semi-aquatic life. The shape of our hips, our subcutaneous fat, and our remaining hair in the streamlined parts of our anatomy may be such adaptions. The beauty of the Aquatic Ape theory is that it is reinforced by the fact that humans prefer to live near lakes, rivers, and oceans.

    Hence, it is an appealing idea that our ancestors may have been as common as squirrels, where evolution didn't occur all in one place, but rather traveled with h o r n y "monkees" back-and-forth across continents. This agrees with the most recent observations of primitives hominids remains being found buried in ancient cemeteries. Thus, you won't find any "missing links", but rather, lost relatives.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • Checked_Other

      Cool stuff, doc, especially the hey, hey with the monkeys...

      March 15, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • Glenn

      I don't like the aquatic ape theory. It's a little too fantastical. We could have developed subcutaneous fat because we lost our hair and needed more heat retaining ability in the cold months. And we like to stay near water, as do most animals that can afford to do so, because that's where the food and (duh) water is concentrated. The grass eaters and the grass-eater eaters have to wander far out in to the plains by necessity.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
      • Ross Herman

        Fantastical? You mean like whales and dolfins?

        March 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
      • TV

        Ok, so you have picked out two things that could be explained by other reasons. But to be the only non-aquatic mammal that has fat under the skin for warmth, the ability of new born babies to "swim" be just fine in a pool of water, etc. Does that not make you consider this a possibility? There are many more adaptions that separates humans from the other primates, it is clear something dramatic happened somewhere along the way.

        I just find the aquatic theory to be the most comprehensive explanation, but it is possible that it is wrong. But the number of different this it ties together is too strong of an argument in my mind to be ignored or outright dismissed.

        March 15, 2013 at 1:35 pm |
    • Ross Herman

      For her not to mention the aquatic-ape theory is, to me, an example of the fact that she clearly intends to maintain her "scientific" dogma.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:27 pm |
    • TV

      I have to agree, the Aquatic Ape theory does seem to tie everything together so much better than the various disparate theories for loss of hair, fat under the skin, walking upright, hair only in places that don't interfere much with swimming, etc. I read the book so long ago, I can't remember all the details.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
    • Dennis

      Perhaps the truth is somewhere in between. We will probably never know.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:38 pm |
    • ChrisF

      Agreed. I've long been fascinated by this explanation for the reasons you mentioned and others. Buoyant breasts, cartilage nose instead of just a hole in the face, and the slight webbing between our fingers, for examples. Despite the complete lack of any evidence, I choose to subscribe to this theory just because it makes a good story.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:54 pm |
    • Kevin

      It is probably because the adaptations you mentioned were detected hundreds of thousands or millions of years earlier than the relatively short 90,000 year time frame that the aquatic ape theory would take place in.

      March 15, 2013 at 3:23 pm |
  71. Checked_Other

    That's just us in the 70s...

    March 15, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
    • Hogan's Goat

      Me today.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:14 pm |
  72. sly

    Folks, we all have opinions, and all opinions are valid, since they are just personal beliefs.

    Some folks think there is some 'God' that created everything. Others believe in science. You cannot believe in both.

    I'm with the scientists ... I don't think Carbon Dating is a huge secret conspiracy, and I do believe that dinosauers existed.

    You religious folks are certainly free to express your own opinons on the subject – that's why it is called a Blog.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • Dharmabum

      You can totally acknowledge both. You just can't be a biblical literalist. I really wish people would stop saying "believe in science." Science is not a belief. We have facts. We have data. Faith is a belief because there are no facts. No data.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:58 pm |
    • DrManic

      Believing that the Bible is precisely true is a new phenomena; even the most ancient Jews and Christians did not regard Genesis as a history, instead they regarded the story as an allegory.

      You can believe in both science and religion when you realize one (1) truth: The "faith" is meaningless if the spiritual world could be proven.

      An almighty God can create Heaven and Earth in six days and leave 300 million year old dinosaur bones behind. However, a just God would not expect his creations to ignore reality. More importantly, the one who ordered his creations to be good stewards, would also expect them to recognize the scientific principle.

      Whereas, science refuses to speculate about the spirit world, thus it is preposterous to assume that there is any conflict in the mind of a true scientist.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
      • VBZ

        Actually if you think about it God wanted His creation to be stupid and naive. It wasn't til Lucifer, the bringer if light, had Eve eat the apple did we gain knowledge. Sorry, I'm with Lucifer on this one.

        March 16, 2013 at 7:46 pm |
    • adh1729

      "I don't think Carbon Dating is a huge secret conspiracy": funny you would bring up C-14. It is a big problem for standard evolutionary beliefs - fossils and fossil fuels often date to 30,000 to 50,000 years by C-14, which completely contradicts the idea that they are millions of years old. A 50 million year old fossil would have zero C-14.

      Solution by the scientific establishment? Brush it under the rug; ignore it.

      March 16, 2013 at 7:49 pm |
  73. Dave Finn

    No mention of lice in the article. Creepy topic, but lice give a very good indication of when we lost our body hair, as two species of lice won't share a host. Human head lice are distinct from pubic lice, which in turn are close genetic relatives of gorilla lice. These two distinct species were unlikely to evolve before humans lost their body hair, creating a barrier between their habitat on an individual human. Tracing when pubic lice diverged from gorilla lice is a good indication of when we lost our fur. A bit of disgusting science. You're welcome.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:49 pm |
    • Dennis

      Wow. And so suddenly I am thinking of ways to transmit head lice to pubic areas.... pretty raunchy!

      March 15, 2013 at 2:41 pm |
    • Kevin

      Very cool!

      March 15, 2013 at 3:28 pm |
  74. JonfromLI

    Blasphemy! Evolution is a myth!!!!!! We were created 2000 years ago when we roamed the Earth with the dinosaurs!

    March 15, 2013 at 12:47 pm |
    • Thinker...

      Don't be silly. It was 6000 years ago! DUH!!!

      (Yes I am joking)

      March 15, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
  75. Kerri

    Funny that she mentions less hair for the purpose of heat regulation – you would think that my husband would have need of much less hair than me then, because he is always warm and I am always cold – shouldn't I be the hairy one?

    March 15, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
  76. Greg Faith

    Stupid humans. We evolved and when we started wearing clothes, we no longer needed "fur". The hair on your body is additional proof we are kin to all the others animals roaming this little ball in space.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:36 pm |
    • Quint

      Clothes aren't what caused us to lose body hair. Humans wore clothing in order to adapt to new areas inhospitable to the naked human body.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:45 pm |
  77. KiddSS

    If man evolved from apes, what did apes evolve from? Man is unique because he is made in God's image.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
    • Ed

      Logic vs Faith...
      Faith WINS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11

      March 15, 2013 at 12:37 pm |
      • Bob

        If you get any dumber you'll need to wear a helmet!

        March 15, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
    • Dharmabum

      If only you knew how ignorant this sounds. You don't think there is research on that? This is not an article covering every aspect of evolution. Why do some people think believing in a God requires one deny science? I just don't get why the two are so difficult to reconcile.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:40 pm |

      Read the article, if you can tear yourself away from your bible long enough. Humans didn't evolve from apes. We shared a common ancestor. There's a difference.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
    • jetjr1970

      If that's true then God must have microcephaly and wear a propeller-beanie, based on your statement.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
    • sly

      Whoa Nellie, now we have a guy claiming to have a photograph of 'Gods Image'?

      Hmmm ... I know y'all have seen God in Oak Tree's and such, but I didn't realize you had a photo.

      Is She black? Actually, more logical that She is Chinese.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:55 pm |
    • Bernard

      We did not evolve from any of the current species of ape you see today, this is an over simplification. In that famous chart of "Man's ascent to evolution", all of those species behind the waking man are extinct.

      We did not evolve from the apes, the apes are our closest species cousins due to sharing a common ancestor.

      All organic life shares a common ancestor, Humans can be traced to even older now-extinct organisms to everything from the Chicken and the common potato plant. But our closest cousins are the various apes.

      Imagine that the history of evolution is like a tree. The base of the tree are the earliest organisms, the branches from that point are the evolutions as a result. Evolution not as an organism actively changing to fit an environment, but due to certain genes giving an organism a higher probability of survival than others and the factor or genetic mutations that can sometimes be beneficial in certain scenarios.

      The very existence of dog breeds is undeniable proof of evolution, the problem with most evolution deniers is lack of education as to what evolution is.

      No, we did not come from any of the apes you see today. That isn't what evolution is. The fact that various dog breeds exists is proof of evolution. The nature of sickle cell anemia being vastly more prevalent in humans where Malaria is more common (the blood cell disorder has the benefit of greatly reducing chance of death from Malaria) is proof of evolution within Humans. The fact that ten-year old vaccines don't work and why pesticide formula needs to change constantly is proof of evolution.

      The only way a person can ever deny evolution in the modern day is by not knowing what it is. It is by far the most understood, verified, and valid scientific theory in existence: even more understood than the nature of gravity itself which is part of the broader theory of relativity.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
      • Dharmabum


        "Word up." – Charles Darwin

        March 15, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
      • Han Solo

        You had me until the last paragraph. There's no need to bring gravity and relativity into this discussion. Everyone knows there's no such thing as gravity. The world just s u c k s

        March 15, 2013 at 1:46 pm |
      • Dan

        In the immortal words of my high school physics teacher:
        "Nothing sucks; everything blows."

        March 18, 2013 at 1:34 pm |
    • DrManic

      Home Sapiens (modern humans) **ARE** apes.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
    • See

      Richard Dawkins wrote a book,The Ancestor's Tale, that will answer that question extremely thoroughly for you. Humans ARE apes, along with chimps and other critters, and apes did evolve from ... Well, I think I finally gave up on Dawkins' book around the time of a shrew.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:08 pm |
    • Seve2U

      What if G_d is the ultimate scientist? What if She said, I will plant a seed on this third rock from the Sun, and then let nature take its course, whatever that may be? What if we are the product of that experiment? Then G_d and creationism are literally true, but so is evolution.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:20 pm |
      • sativa619

        Nice hypothesis, however there is exactly zero evidence to support it. L2science.

        March 15, 2013 at 1:59 pm |
      • Esque

        Possible. But if so, God is not a scientist, but some sort of gardener. She/he was only letting the nature do the true work. Also, it couldn't have happened 6,000 year ago. BTW, did 6,000 years stay constant for the last 2,000 years?

        March 15, 2013 at 2:08 pm |
  78. Rich

    According to the internet, there's plenty of 'furry' people around... Google it. 😉

    March 15, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
  79. Darwin

    I'm surprised that she didn't offer the "hunting to exhaustion" theory. Before humans had bows and arrows, a hunter had to get quite close to prey to kill it. One way of getting close is to run with the prey for many hours until it becomes too tired to escape. Heavy fur on the hunter – which would have caused overheating – would have been a disadvantage in this case.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:23 pm |
    • hilreal

      Humans are not runners, that is why we move on 2 rather than 4 legs.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:31 pm |
      • Tommy

        Humans are built for running long distances, but not for sprinting. Humans evolved from ape-like ancestors because they needed to run long distances – perhaps to hunt animals or scavenge carcasses on Africa's vast savannah – and the ability to run shaped our anatomy, making us look like we do today.

        March 15, 2013 at 12:44 pm |
      • Glenn Roberts

        Humans are the only species that's truly a long distance runner. Traditionally humans were capable of running all day long.

        March 15, 2013 at 12:51 pm |
      • David

        Wait, what? We can outrun every animal on the planet. Ever see a horse complete a marathon?

        March 15, 2013 at 1:49 pm |
  80. snowboarder

    for the winter i sport a very imposing beard and readily admit that my wife shaves my back for the summer.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
  81. Dominic

    OK, just so everyone knows – there's a difference between hair and fur. Humans (and chimps) do NOT have fur!!! We have hair, and would have been covered with that – not fur. How can I trust anything said here if she can't even get this right?

    March 15, 2013 at 12:19 pm |
    • coch

      The difference between Fur and Hair is: Hair is fur on humans.
      Fur -The thick coat of soft hair covering the skin of a non-human mammals, such as a fox or beaver.
      Hair – A growth of such filaments, as that forming the coat of a human.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:01 pm |
  82. thinking out loud

    Why are we curious about this? – why are we spending effort on what may have happened? What is our collective speculation going to tell us/help us for the future? Seriously? Whether you're into creation or evolution, evolution specifically mandates that the changes happen for natural reasons. This is why we can be comfortable saying to chimpanzees, we are "more evolved than you". Are we doing this research/speculation to better understand how we're going to "control it" in the future? What's that say about future ethics? The "evolution" of whether or not to spend precious time on studying it...we should be evolved enough to realize the futility, the money should have dried up on it a long time ago. Good luck. I hope you aren't spending my money...but you probably are.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:16 pm |
    • DemptyELF

      Really!? Why are we curious? Because we are alive. Are you so dead inside that your greater concern is for money coming out of your pocket? What is the purpose of life if not to explore and discover? Good luck in the future (I have a hunch you'll need it).

      March 15, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
    • Esque

      How knows? Some day, this research may lead to products that grow hair where you want (bald head) and stop it from growing where you don't want (armpits).

      March 15, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • Frankhy

      It's funny you ask why we are curious, in relation to an article about how humans evolved.
      The answer is, curiosity – the search for more knowledge without yet knowing what that knowledge might generate in terms of benefits, is what has made the human race so successful that it has inhabited every corner of the world in an extremely short time, not to mention reshaped (for good and bad) the entire planet, pushed out countless other species by taking over their niches in the predator chain. Go to the moon and beyond, write Romeo & Juliet, dissemble the atom, and make music. Pretty cool and none of that had been possible had not curiosity been such an inherent trait of ours.

      March 15, 2013 at 7:18 pm |
  83. Concerned Citizen

    I have a hard time believing that we are direct descendants of apes partly in fact that there are still chimps, apes etc, still present to this day.. If we were in fact an evolution of those species would they not have all evolved as well? We have to be an entirely different product, yes, we maybe be similar in some areas, but worlds of difference in others.. I'm wise enough to say I don't know.. Wish everybody else could take the same approach.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:11 pm |
    • snowboarder

      why do you think that they didn't evolve?

      March 15, 2013 at 12:15 pm |
    • dan

      There were no Chimps back 6 to 7 million years ago either, just like there were no humans. However, there was an ancestor. What the anthropologist is saying is that chimps and humans have the same common ancester but we split on the tree about 6 or 7 million years ago. Chimps took one evolutionary route and humans took another. We are diverging from the chimp branch. Hope that is more clear.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:18 pm |
      • SPA Knight

        So one branch of the tree evolved to the point of traveling in space and the other branch evolved to picking fleas off their fellow apes and eating them. What a bunch of bananas!

        March 15, 2013 at 5:00 pm |
    • treez

      We both evolved from a common ancestor. You ought to read The Greatest Show on Earth by Richard Dawkins.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:20 pm |
      • kenny of salt

        EVERYBODY ought to read ANYTHING by Richard Dawkins. Whether you agree with him or not he has a fascinating mind.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:04 pm |
    • John

      In order for something to evolve, it must be placed in an environment or system different from the one in which it already evolved. For example, if a troupe of monkeys crosses a big river one day, and in the process their environment goes from jungle forest to savannah, they will slowly select for different traits than their siblings who remained in the old environment.

      Therefore, the ones who live in a new environment will adapt to that environment, and the ones in the old will continue being adapted to their existing environment, causing the two, previously identical groups of monkeys, to diverge, which is the meaning of "speciation"

      And why we still have Pekingese and Rottweilers.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
    • hilreal

      Re-read the article. I will believe you will find no reference to humans evolving from Chimps.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:32 pm |
  84. palintwit

    That fellow in the picture took Sarah Palin's place on Fox News.

    March 15, 2013 at 12:10 pm |
    • palintwit

      And look... he brings his own lunch!

      March 15, 2013 at 12:12 pm |
    • palintwit

      Fake palintwit is fake ^^^^^

      March 15, 2013 at 2:51 pm |
      • palintwit

        Fake-fake palintwit is fake. ^^^^^^^^

        March 15, 2013 at 3:12 pm |
      • palintwit

        fake-fake-fake palintwit is faker than fakey-fake

        March 15, 2013 at 3:44 pm |
  85. robert hunter

    why do most animals and Caucasians have white skins and hairy bodies than Black people

    March 15, 2013 at 12:00 pm |
    • hilreal

      The envirnment they evoved in. Like polar bears versus grizzly bears.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:34 pm |
  86. drowlord

    Wow, a genuinely interesting scientific article on CNN. Information that I haven't already been exposed to hundreds of times. Neat! Kudos!

    March 15, 2013 at 11:49 am |
  87. Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    Please explain why Donald Trump has yellow hair.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:47 am |
    • tct

      That isn't hair, it's an extra-terrestrial parasite that controls his neurons and makes him say stupid and crazy things.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:03 pm |
    • Sidewinder

      I thought it was the remnants of some sort of jaundiced possum?

      March 15, 2013 at 12:29 pm |
      • tct

        A possum wouldn't cause enough brain damage to make him a Birther.

        March 15, 2013 at 12:42 pm |
  88. Erik

    It's all because of that darn monolith.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:42 am |
  89. lvsingleton

    If you could see the amount of hair on my arms, you might reconsider the fact that humans have lost their fur.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:40 am |
  90. Big Al

    Who says we lost our fur? The author of this article obviously has never met my ex-inlaws!

    March 15, 2013 at 11:27 am |
  91. Striker

    If science hasn't figured it out yet then it never will. God made man in his image, so back then and now we continue to look like naked mamals.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:26 am |
    • ER

      Bahahaha you are funny

      March 15, 2013 at 11:38 am |
    • pmmarion

      There is always someone who has to bring god into a discussion. Look god don't give a rat's rear end what we do or say or where we come from. He just is. ANYONE who tries to 'interpret" what "god wants" or what he "thinks" is a liar and a charlatan. God just is. Leave him alone. lol

      March 15, 2013 at 11:45 am |
    • Roscoe Chait

      I knew it! God is Dog (god=dog, dog=god), and since we are made in God's image, we look like dogs. I love dogs. Dogs rule!

      March 15, 2013 at 11:48 am |
      • Butch DeLoria

        We're Tunnel Snakes and we rule!

        March 15, 2013 at 12:39 pm |
      • Thinker...

        I wonder how many people will actually get that reference...

        March 15, 2013 at 1:13 pm |
    • Chaz

      How do you know that God's appearance has not evolved?

      March 15, 2013 at 11:50 am |
    • gager

      The old god did it argument that gives that person the moral right to be ignorant forever.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:13 pm |
    • flossmore

      So....God must look like an ape!!

      March 15, 2013 at 12:48 pm |
    • Duane

      I'm not sure where you get 'science hasn't figured it out' in an article explaining what has happened and why.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:05 pm |
  92. ID

    Some people still have fur 😀
    Thank god we lost it though. We look good without it.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:18 am |
  93. JAM

    It has been rumored that Brad Pitt did not try to stop "propagation of pheromones" by showering and using products to hide the smell!

    March 15, 2013 at 11:17 am |
  94. anon

    I think it is a bit presumptous to say that we have totally lost our fur. I have seen more then one man who was quite hairy. Besides, after a certain number of generations of wearing clothes, the fur would naturally go away. I've seen this phenomenon with people who wear hats; the hair on their heads gets a bit scanty over time. Also, anyone who has been a soldier and has marched for miles at a time for weeks at a time can tell you that the hair on the calves tends to disappear, never to return.

    I can see how after only a few generations of clothes wearers, the genes would evolve to offspring eventually not having nearly as much fur, until what we have left is what you see today. Makes sense. What I want to know, is why would we begin wearing clothes to begin with, and how did we keep from freezing to death in the time frame in between being without adequate fur, and figuring out the whole clothes thing?

    March 15, 2013 at 11:17 am |
    • bard

      A few generations would not be anywhere near enough to produce hairless (or as has been pointed out, significantly diminished hairiness) offspring.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:19 am |
    • Thinker...

      It is actually fairly unlikely that clothing caused us to lose our hair. If you look at the people with (insert the name of that 'werewolf' condition, I can't remember what it is called) they wear clothing but are still furry.

      That and clothing over fur would be pretty uncomfortable in the first place and would be fairly fatal (heatstroke) in equatorial Africa.

      March 15, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
    • SeanP

      What you do describe is known as Lamarkism, or the passing of acquired characteristics. Lamarkism is generally false for all intent for this article. As it stands now, somebody or a group of somebodies was isolated and mutation affected hair production to some extent. This may have happened more than once due to the wide variance in hair expression today, which accounts for hairy / non-hairy people. All this shows is body hair is not deemed essential by the genome and the genes responsible may not be 'maintained' as well, lending to genetic variation.

      More simply put, If Lamarkim was true my two sons should have been born without a left toe as I had it amputated as a kid, they should have two scars on their right hand with a scar on their forehead acquired before they were born, and a creaky shoulder. Neither one has any of these markings.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:10 pm |
    • getbent

      Humans inhabited sub-Saharan Africa during the time we lost our fur, so freezing would not have been a factor. In fact, it's the opposite – hot, semi-arid climate necessitated the loss of fur to help us cool more efficiently.

      As for those hairy men you speak of...that's just a trick of your perspective. They may look furry to you in comparison to other humans. But relative to other mammals, they aren't even close.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:32 pm |
  95. cheapseats2

    With global warming and all, who needs fur?

    March 15, 2013 at 11:13 am |
  96. zak stich

    DNA manipulation by the “gods”.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:12 am |
  97. Poltergiest

    So if we lost our fur, even though our ancestors and hundreds of other species still have fur... And what about the early settlers in Europe/North Asia, shouldn't they have started becoming furry again to keep in body heat?

    Maybe we have less hair because the melanin we produced was better spent on a brain smart enough to kill an animal and take it's fur, in addition to all the other benefits it provided. Speculation meet speculation.

    March 15, 2013 at 11:01 am |
    • remark

      By the time of those migrations we had invented clothing to keep us warm.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:15 am |
    • Beth

      That isn't how evolution works other wise if I lost a finger, my future off spring would be missing that finger. We lost our fur then adapted with clothing.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:33 am |
      • Poltergiest

        Our bodies are still covered in hair, it's just very thin and not considered fur. There's every reason for that hair to be thicker in populations that are exposed to cold temperatures if this is simply a response to climate. People with thinner hair should hold less heat to their bodies, so they would be more vulnerable to the cold compared to hairier people and would die more often from exposure, clothing or not. Meaning thin haired people should have frozen to death more often than hairy folk. Especially in early hunter gatherer societies in which young males are often the ones exposed the the elements and unexpected conditions. She said the evolutionary pressure was heat regulation. So we should see a contrast between the hairiness of hot places and cold places.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:48 am |
    • Larry Winkler

      But, that probably has happened. Those whose ancestors from the northern regions have more hair than those in Africa, it we all came from. This is true of both males and females. Out-of-Africa occurred between 60,000 and 80,000 years ago. That is 3000 or 4000 generations. In these 4000 generations, there has been enough variation to create all the differing ethnicities we see today - I find that fascinating. In that time, especially in the northern east Asia, those have accommodated the colder climate by becoming stockier, with somewhat shorter arms and legs (which would tend to limit heat loss), rather than restart hair growth. If WE were designing how humans would change to accommodate the colder climate, one would think that it would make sense to start growing hair again. But since evolutionary processes are randomly generated with natural selection, the randomness of this process did not do what would have seemed to make "sense". It could have been that, as evolution tends to do, when the genetic changes occurred to eliminate hair, the processes were modified to perform other important tasks, so that the hair-growing process was not the easier path to supporting humans in northern regions. That is, it was generally "easier" to modify appendage length than hair growth to improve "fitness".

      March 15, 2013 at 11:48 am |
      • Larry Winkler

        I want to add the obvious. Perhaps as Jablonski mentioned, the hair follicles are reservoirs of stems cells that help heal cuts to the skin. Is it the case that the evolutionary change in human hair follicles was to support skin healing, and converting it back to hair growth was no longer an ease option. Perhaps the good prof can respond if fur bearing animals has much less ability to heal skin cuts than humans. I would expect that since fur would also tend to protect the underlying skin from cuts in the first place, and therefore require lesser skin healing processes than us naked types need.

        Just a hypothesis/question.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • Poltergiest

      Possibly, I'm just saying there's plenty of room for speculation given the evidence we have right now.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:59 am |
    • allawash

      It's due to reproduction. If you die before you reproduce, there will be no offspring with your traits. Also, mate selection. If a hairy male selects a less hairy female, or vice versa, then the offspring are more likely to be less hairy. That's why they call it survival of the fittest. The one most adapted to the environment is the one most likely to succeed and pass on his/her successful traits. Less hairy was obviously preferred and more successful.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:54 pm |
    • SeanP

      Then how did man survive the Ice Ages without hair? Cold air is not a selective force, exposure is easily defeated by things known as 'fire', 'cave', and 'animal skin'. Mutation(s) which resulted in loss of hair akin to the apes could simply result from isolation. Early migrating human tribes would have been a breeding ground for genetic variability: small populations, relatively short life times, fairly frequent births... hence why we see a large number of species and sub-species in early human history.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:18 pm |
  98. Maximus Lovelace

    We lost our fur because some PETA members travelled back through time and altered our evolutionary pattern. "Not even humans born with fur should have fur" they were heard chanting.

    March 15, 2013 at 10:54 am |


      March 15, 2013 at 11:09 am |
  99. Beth

    Great article, I see that the creationist already comment proving that science education is failing in this country.

    March 15, 2013 at 10:34 am |
    • Uruk-hai

      Failing? When was it ever good?

      March 15, 2013 at 11:03 am |
    • Scott

      The Creationist movement died when they stopped burning us at the stake..... time is on our side, as I believe rational people are destined to save the world from ourselves (I hope).

      March 15, 2013 at 11:13 am |
    • MC

      Science education is fine. Some stupid is just too deep.

      March 15, 2013 at 4:51 pm |
  100. Cal Newlan

    God created humanity, not blind evolutionary forces. If you want to believe that you're just a groomed, perfumed, clothed, enculturated primate, then have fun with your meaningless existence.

    March 15, 2013 at 7:30 am |
    • FMD

      Why do you need meaning? Why not just enjoy life? Is forced worship out of fear of eternal damnation really that fulfilling?

      March 15, 2013 at 10:47 am |
      • Beth

        Right on FMD, if we were 'created' someone needs to be fired. The human body is a mess and there are PLENTY of examples in nature with better structures. The eye, for example, is terribly 'designed', I guess 'god' needed the octopus to see better since they have a far superior eye design. Genetic abnormalities and birth defects...guess the 'creator' was asleep...OR this is what we expect in nature, no one is in control here. Need meaning? Make meaning, help your fellow humans have a good life.

        March 15, 2013 at 10:59 am |
      • Poltergiest

        By what authority do you claim I or anyone has any responsibility for helping "fellow humans have a good life."? If I were to invent my own meaning in life would anything less than maximizing my own personal gratification make sense?

        March 15, 2013 at 11:32 am |
      • sharoom

        It would if you stop assuming that altruism is always detrimental to survival. We seem to have the preconceived notion that "survival of the fittest" always means something draconian. You should ask yourself what does "fit" really mean.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:58 am |
      • Poltergiest

        Survival is pretty easy here whether you're altruistic or not. Work, buy food. You don't need friends, you just need businesses. I assume altruism is sometimes detrimental to our wants and desires, not survival. After we are successfully surviving, we always start wanting more than that. Therefore, if it benefits can be had by harming another, and the benefits can't be had any other way, is there any reason I should not harm that individual?(as long as laws let me)

        March 15, 2013 at 12:08 pm |
      • AG

        While survival (work for money, buy what you need) is possible without friends/altruistic motives, that is but the individual within our current society. If everyone in society was solely out for only themselves, society and civilization would no longer exist. It is the cooperative living (and caring of other members of our society) that allow us to survive as we do. Reproduction is also not in the individual's best interest (as it drains your own personal resources to rear and support offspring).

        March 15, 2013 at 12:43 pm |
      • adh1729

        "Beth-Right on FMD, if we were 'created' someone needs to be fired. The human body is a mess and there are PLENTY of examples in nature with better structures. The eye, for example, is terribly 'designed', I guess 'god' needed the octopus to see better since they have a far superior eye design. Genetic abnormalities and birth defects...guess the 'creator' was asleep". Impressive loud-mouth you are. Nobody from your species has even made a bacterial cell. But no, run your mouth as you shut down your brain. Maybe you should be grateful that you can open your eyes.

        March 15, 2013 at 10:13 pm |
    • Bill

      Ask God for me why he reused so much genetic code when he was making chimpanzees and humans. If we of all his creations are so unique then I think we deserve an explaination as for why he didn't design us from scratch.

      March 15, 2013 at 10:59 am |
      • kenny of salt

        Bill? Why doesn't my reply to you show up? I have something funny to share! but I hit POST and nothing happens. boo HOO!

        March 15, 2013 at 3:16 pm |
      • kenny of salt

        Okay, so my conversational post will post, but my funny will not? Is there a funny filter? I'm not from around here...just came in looking for the bathroom

        March 15, 2013 at 3:17 pm |
    • Jackie Treehorn

      This may come as a shock to someone who places no value on rationality, but whether something is comforting or not has no bearing on whether it is true. The universe is under no obligation to provide you with personal fulfillment.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:03 am |
      • Scott


        March 15, 2013 at 11:09 am |
      • JAM


        March 15, 2013 at 11:15 am |
      • Pockets

        You mean Adam &Eve were hairy primates? Oh my, living in a Garden with a talking snake with a hankering for apples. I do wish Hollywood would make a movie on that subject. Especially the part where they are nude and suddenly have to invent clothing , for the sin of eating the damn apple. LOL. How about the burning bush, or Moses wandering in the desert for 40 years, oh that's right, archeology could not find one trace of this fable either. Wake up, people its all a story from ignorant peasants. We crawled out of the sea,to evolve to what we currently are, primates.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:36 am |
    • Angry Hillbilly

      You say have fun with my meaningless existence? I say have fun being told you're not worth someone's love on a daily basis, as it sounds far less healthy.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:05 am |
    • Scott

      Meaningless existence? Meaningless existence is a choice. You make meaning in your life and for those around you. You don't need a book or someone behind a pulpit to give you meaning in life. I hope that is the case for most. There is so much fact surrounding the evolutionary story of everything, that I just find it amazing that billions of people still cling to the stories written by our ancestors who couldn't explain anything, so they inserted God or some other deity to fill in all the gaps.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:08 am |
      • Poltergiest

        Actually only about 70 million of the 2 billion Christians identify as Evangelical. The biggest denomination, the catholic church, has no disagreement with evolution.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:36 am |
    • Godfrey

      God made man in his image? Oh, the ignorance.

      You sure it wasn't the other way around? Occam's Razor and all that.

      So glad religion is dying. It's like the human race has cancer that is going into remission.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:10 am |
      • anon

        It's not dying. It will make a comeback. What we see happening in society now is absolutely no different then what has happened time and time again all through the centuries. Even with technology, there really IS nothing new under the sun.

        Funny how we think we are so enlightened and evolved, yet fail to realize how many other civilizations that are now destroyed have done the exact same thing as we are doing right now in our own society, with the same consequences on the way. The heart of man is on wicked things continually.

        We NEVER learn.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:22 am |
      • cedar rapids

        'yet fail to realize how many other civilizations that are now destroyed have done the exact same thing as we are doing right now in our own society'

        such as?

        March 15, 2013 at 11:34 am |
      • Charlie

        The best example would be the Roman Empire, but also the British, French, Spanish, Persia, Macedonian, Russian, USSR, Babylon, ands o on.

        March 15, 2013 at 12:21 pm |
      • Tommy

        Except that the Roman empire collapsed shortly after converting to Christianity.

        March 15, 2013 at 12:52 pm |
      • Hugh Jass

        "how many other civilizations that are now destroyed have done the exact same thing as we are doing right now in our own society, with the same consequences on the way."
        What, we're giving ourselves lead poisoning by using lead for corks? Or being wiped out by a volcano? Maybe we're being overrun by Goths and Vandals, or overextending our supply lines until we can't keep our colonies strong? Just forget it, there has never been anything like America in the history of the world.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:13 pm |
    • bard

      "If you want to believe that you're just a groomed, perfumed, clothed, enculturated primate, then have fun with your meaningless existence"

      I know, right! It is friggin stupid to thing something like that. There is pretty much no evidence whatsoever that these groomed, perfumed, and clothed primates are really enculturated. I mean look at their silly religious rituals!

      March 15, 2013 at 11:11 am |
      • Duane

        Well played, sir.

        March 15, 2013 at 1:07 pm |
      • Hugh Jass

        Heck, I've been acculturated. Except for music, nothing from my childhood's culture still exists. Polaroids, transistors, longboards, cigarettes, you name it, it's been overwritten.

        March 15, 2013 at 2:17 pm |
    • Asher

      Are you really saying that the Creator of the universe, of all that is, could not design into all life the ability to modify or evolve to meet changing conditions? Think of what happens to the soles of your feet if you go barefooted for any length of time; they thicken. A shoe that rubs a part of your foot causes a callus to develop to protect the irritated skin. You do a great disservice to the Creator with your rigid, limited thinking.

      March 15, 2013 at 11:27 am |
      • Pockets


        March 15, 2013 at 11:37 am |
      • Beth

        well sure, IF there is a creator it used natural ways to create us, nothing supernatural. I can't disprove a creator or a god but you can't prove that the Flying Spaghetti Monster didn't create us.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:39 am |
      • Beth

        and if you develop a callus on your foot, you will not pass that callus on to your children. That isn't how evolution works.

        March 15, 2013 at 11:42 am |
      • Hogan's Goat

        "You do a great disservice to the Creator with your rigid, limited thinking." That's Lamarck's Theory, and if were true, then no synagogue would need a mohel. Are you also an alchemist or a medieval barber? Did you time-travel here from the days of Shakespeare, sirrah?

        March 15, 2013 at 1:09 pm |
      • JT

        Beth, the ability of the skin to form a callus IS evolution. Not all genetic traits are present from birth!

        March 15, 2013 at 2:36 pm |
    • Phil McKraken

      But if you want to believe a blonde haired, blue eyed mulleted sky wizard with the power to impregnate chicks simply using his AWSUM mind powers who works through people who hate everyone but other blonde haired blue eyes zombie followers while touching little boys, then visit lovely

      March 15, 2013 at 12:24 pm |
      • kenny of salt

        release the mckraken

        bet you've never heard THAT one before

        March 15, 2013 at 2:58 pm |
    • Hugh Jass

      "meaningless existence?" You poor blind worm. What a strange fantasy you have about our lives! I'm in love and a parent, I work hard at a job that benefits others, and I enjoy every minute of my life. What you mean, I guess, is that I don't benefit YOU in any way.

      March 15, 2013 at 12:57 pm |
    • Robert It will be my pleasure to visit your website and give you the virus you so deserve. Bet I pay your taxes for you since you won't. What a creep. Religion is a myth. And sadly you and your stupidity are not. Grab that money while you can tax free creep!

      March 15, 2013 at 1:03 pm |
      • Hugh Jass

        "visit your website and give you the virus" Robert, please take the high ground and don't go out of your way to harm Cal. I have some mental illness in my family, and his posts just scream "Mommy bought me a GoDaddy domain name so I'd stay busy." Turn the other cheek. I doubt he's organized enough to get anything tax-free except a disability check.

        March 15, 2013 at 1:17 pm |
      • GFBF

        Religion is a myth? No religion exists. There are many religions in the world. You indeed have proven yourself a numpty.

        March 15, 2013 at 3:05 pm |
    • lunchbreaker

      Just ignore this d-bag. On his blog he states:

      "Yes, I admit that it was somewhat uncouth to use a CNN blog to pad my own blog hits, but I’ve seen far worse abuses of Internet etiquette. One of the difficulties that one must endure and overcome in creating a successful blog is actually getting posts read. It’s sort of a catch-22: No one reads your posts because they’re not ranked well by the Google algorithm, and the Google algorithm won’t rank your posts well because no one reads them. Hence, my cybernetic brainstorm. Of course, I can’t do that sort of thing too often without being banned altogether from the CNN blogs, so I’ve got to pace myself"

      March 15, 2013 at 2:27 pm |
    • jedrothwell

      Evolutionary forces are not blind.

      March 15, 2013 at 2:46 pm |
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