of 100,000 Years
a period of 100,000 years,
a great deal can occur
in terms of climate change and, at least in the past 100,000 years,
in human development.
As we examine in Climate
Science, scientists have become increasingly aware of multi-millennial
scale orbital cycles of precession,
and obliquity which can play an important role in the rise and fall
of ice ages. In
Climate History we explore how during
the past 100,000 years ago, human
beings-- Homo sapiens - have developed from our hominid ancestors,
adapting to rugged climates, such as in Europe 40,000 years ago. And
in Resources, various links and inquiry
ideas are offered for you to dig deeper into these topics.
The Past 100,000 Years
Before Present (B.P.)
Note: The Last Ice Age cycle lasted from roughly 60,000 to 20,000
years before present, with Ice Age cycles occurring since 2.6 Million
years ago to the present.
population has been estimated to have been around five million
people 10,000 years ago. Recent studies from the Center for Genome
Research and others such as Ambrose
suggest a small group of perhaps 10,000 people could have left
Africa between 50-100,000 years ago and populated the entire planet.
of Holocene. Large mammals including saber-toothed cats, mammoths,
and mastodons become extinct. Neolithic period with beginning of agriculture
and end of Ice Ages.
An estimated 5 million Homo sapiens inhabit planet Earth.
Image of Woolly Mammoth from Tulane University Museum of Natural History
cooling about 15,000 years ago gives way to abrupt
warming at the end of the Younger Dryas period some 11,600
years ago, with a climatic ripple effect impacting habitats around
Gray wolves in East Asia
become domesticated about 15,000 years ago, with all modern
dogs evolving from them. (Savolainen,
20,000 years ago, global mean temperature 4 degrees C cooler than
today, although the North Atlantic was 14 degrees C cooler. Lower
sea level allows large-scale migrations of people into the Americas.
sapiens thrive in cold European climate. Homo neanderthalensis
become extinct, with last fossil evidence dated 28,000 years ago in
of stone and bone tools along with cave paintings and other artwork
in Europe. Homo sapiens use bone, ivory, antlers, and shells
to make tools while Neandertals only use stone to make tools. (Niewohner,
Image of early European Art Rock.
dwellers leave evidence of seeds of wild dates and nuts including
chestnuts, walnuts, pine nuts, and acorns in Shanidar Cave of Northern
Many large megafauna in Australia including large kangaroos, wombats
and emu-like ducks, become extinct, possibly due to human hunting
and use of fire. (Miller,
sapiens enter Australia and begin to use fire, altering the existing
flora and fauna. (Pyne,
During warming period (55-45K BP) mammoths roam central Sweden.
discoveries in caves along South African coast dating to 70,000
years before present suggest people using bone tools and living
on fish and mammals in the region. (Henshilwood,
Major eruption of Mount Toba 73,000 years ago in modern day Sumatra
impacts global climate system. (Rampino,
Image of artifacts by Chris Henshilwood
of Homo sapiens includes fish and seafoods as last Ice Age
impacts Northern Hemisphere. Some scientists theorize that fish oil
was key to the growth of the brain of Homo sapiens Evidence
suggests that no other hominids such as Neanderthals ate fish. (See
2001) Neandertals well established in Europe since at least
300,000 years before present.