Human navigation for a million years? Not so fast!

Fantasus

Ad Honorem
Jan 2012
2,381
Northern part of European lowland
#1
This is a sort of comment to an article from The New Scientist. Because of some findings of ancient bones or remnants of tools, it seems some think the only possible explanation is early seafaring. Perhaps. But not so fast with concluding it is "proved". There could over long timespans come other opportunities that seems unlikely in the short run. And if there really existed such very ancient seafarers, should we not expect sooner or later direct evidence? The objection could be likely boats and rafts would usually decay completely over the millenia, but I suspect there would in the long run be at least some places with perfect conditions of organic material.
 
Jan 2010
4,364
Atlanta, Georgia USA
#2
Ancient sea levels were much lower than today. So, while the remains of some ancient vessels might exist, they would be underwater and, probably, very small and difficult to find. Even vessels that were "beached" would have been on beaches that are today underwater.

Doesn't mean they aren't there; just that the long run may be longer than you're thinking.
 

Fantasus

Ad Honorem
Jan 2012
2,381
Northern part of European lowland
#3
Ancient sea levels were much lower than today. So, while the remains of some ancient vessels might exist, they would be underwater and, probably, very small and difficult to find. Even vessels that were "beached" would have been on beaches that are today underwater.

Doesn't mean they aren't there; just that the long run may be longer than you're thinking.
Ancient sea levels varied, and were lower during the iceages, probably somewhat higher than today in the interglacial periods.
 

Corvidius

Ad Honorem
Jul 2017
2,551
Crows nest
#5
Accidental rafting across wide stretches of ocean is a possibility. For instance, the only way that various species of rodents, including the capybara, monkeys, some snakes and the Hoatzin bird, incapable of a transatlantic flight, appeared in South America was by being caught on huge rafts of vegetation originating on the West coast of Africa and being swept to South America by the prevailing currents. While those specific accidental migrations occured tens of millions of years ago, these huge vegetation rafts make their way westwards across the Atlantic to this day. I'm not saying with certainty that humans have accidentally travelled long sea distances like this, but the evidence of other animals doing so cannot preclude the possibility that we may have, and if not east to west across the Atlantic, maybe shorter distances in other parts of the world.
 
Last edited:
Dec 2018
2
Seattle
#6
I think you need to seek the truth not only in the remains of boats. Once scientists will have the opportunity based on advanced research to process chemicals and extract information from them. The ancient people also used not only boats) Finding any pill like a viagra or any substance will give us much more information.