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Archive for May, 2013

Shocking new theory: Our human ancestors hunted and ate Neanderthals

Pierre Andrieu / AFP / Getty Images

A model representing a Neanderthal man on display at the National Museum of Prehistory in Eyzies-de-Tayac, Dordogne, France.

By Larry O’Hanlon
Discovery News

Humans today eat gorillas and chimpanzees, so why would our prehistoric ancestors flinch at sitting down to a nicely roasted Neanderthal?

That’s the shocking new hypothesis being raised by anthropologists in Spain who wonder if our closest extinct relative was exterminated in the same way as 178 other large mammals, so called megafauna, which are suspected of going at least partially by the hand of hungry human hunters.

“Except in its native Africa, in the other continents Homo sapiens can be considered as an invasive alien species,” write researchers Policarp Hortolà and Bienvenido Martínez-Navarro of the Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona, Spain. They published their hypothesis in the May issue of the journal Quaternary International.

PHOTOS: Faces of Our Ancestors

Today there are endless cases of invasive species decimating native species all over the world. So perhaps at the end of the Pliestocene, it was the same when humans spread into Europe and Asia where Homo neanderthalensis was just another big, slow-reproducing mammal.

“We think that modern humans, who occupied (a) similar ecological niche as Neanderthals, but with more evolved technology, in their colonization of the new European territories directly competed with Neanderthals for the food and other natural resources,” writes Martínez-Navarro, in an emailed response to Discovery News.

There are other examples of very similar species overlapping and eventually one of them getting pushed out, explained Martínez-Navarro, especially involving carnivores out of Africa.

The African species of saber toothed tiger, for example, spread into Eurasia around 1.8 million years ago and lead to the demise of a very closely related species there. And the arrival of the African spotted hyena into Eurasia matches the extinction of the giant short facet hyena about 800,000 years ago.

Of course, this is only suggestive, and not hard evidence that Homo sapiens followed the same pattern as other African predators.

“The only manner to test it is to find direct evidences of modern human eating marks on Neanderthal remains, such cut or broken marks on bones in … artifacts made by modern humans,” explained Martínez-Navarro.

PHOTOS: Humans Vs. Neanderthals: How Did We Win?

So far, the evidence is not quite there, explained paleo-ecologist J.R. Stewart of Bournemouth University in the U.K.

“This is interesting because in actual fact the Neanderthal remains with cut marks are generally found in deposits full of Neanderthal artifacts and not with human artifacts,” Stewart said. “This suggests they were eaten by Neanderthals.”

That doesn’t disprove the hypothesis either, it just means we’ll have to see if any evidence is found to back it up.

NEWS: Neanderthals Lacked Social Skills

“The idea that humans hunted Neanderthals to extinction as part of the megafaunal extinction is new,” said Stewart. “Not that humans killed them all in a ‘genocide,’ which has already been suggested.”

And although Stewart isn’t considers the new hypothesis “unlikely,” he agreed that all hypotheses “need to be voiced and considered.”

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My reaction to a load of drivel concocted by convicted 2007 Urewera raid firearms defendant Emily Bailey…

I have decided to publish these comments from Emily Bailey who is of Maori descent  and is the partner of a Swiss national, Urs Signor. Mr Signor has a lot to say for somebody who is not only not of Maori descent but is a foreignor to boot.  Why hasn’t he applied for New Zealand citizenship I wonder? He would have us believe he is an expert on Maoritanga as well. Both these people were part of the original group of defendants in the Urewera raids. While they and two other others got off terrorism charges they were convicted onillegal  firearm charges and sentenced to Home Detention. I’ll make further comments after this post:


“One of the people convicted after the Urewera raids is calling for “indigenous reservations” to be established in New Zealand.

Parihaka’s Emily Bailey made the call yesterday after the release of the Independent Police Conduct Authority‘s report on the raids, which criticised many aspects of the police actions.

Bailey, her partner Urs Signer, Tame Iti and Te Rangikaiwhiria Kemara were found guilty of firearms charges in March last year following Operation Eight, the Urewera raids in 2007.

“If countries like Canada and the United States can cope with separate indigenous reservations and entire states with separate laws inside one country, then why can’t we?” she said.

“Why do we have to hear ironic calls of apartheid and separatism? One rule for all doesn’t mean equality, it means authoritarianism and separatism between the rich and powerful and the poor.

“I don’t believe that’s what New Zealanders want. True equality comes through diversity, respect, trust and justice.”

Ms Bailey said she was surprised by the IPCA report, which found some of the police actions were “unlawful, unjustified and unreasonable”.

“Which is a rarity from that institution, which rarely criticises unlawful or immoral acts of the New Zealand police force.”

However, she was disappointed the report continued to back up the claims of “reasonable” and “justifiable” actions in relation to those arrested who were deemed “a threat to public safety”.

“The report further frustrates us who have had our names smeared by the state and media for something we did not do, nor plan to do.”

She said none of the group were convicted of criminal group activity and the convictions for unlawful possession of firearms came from “tainted” evidence.

“The whole thing has been eight years of over-reaction by racist, paranoid people in power who cannot comprehend the idea of self-governance and mana motuhake but are more than willing to illegally obtain snippets of conversations from loads of different people and create a terrible scary story, complete with illegally obtained images of scary-looking but harmless activities on private land.

“The lives of the children and whanau terrorised by the police raids in 2007 and the years of court proceedings and suspicion can never be taken away by some insincere apology too full of excuses and too late.”

Mr Signer did not want to make any further comment.”

Acknowledgements:  – © Fairfax NZ News




The above comments are a load of puerile drivel. The NZ Police had sufficient evidence to justify the raids. However, it wasn’t the evidence itself that was found faulty, but how the evidence was gathered. It was gathered illegally and therefore could not be used against the defendants. But the controversy raging in NZ at present is the way the raid was conducted –  against innocent Ruatoki  towns-people as well, including their children. Armed Police dressed in black like ‘Ninjas’, children claimed. People are calling for the heads of those senior police personnel responsible for organising the raids. I will supply a link to the “raids” later. The four defendants where found guilty on the firearms charges: Iti and kemara were given prison sentences, and Bailey and Signor home detention – Bailey’s pregnancy obviously helped, Some good advice there no doubt. Bailey is also a naive fool who can’t seem to understand that NZ Maori are not indigenous to New Zealand; their ancestors migrated here from East Polynesia  around 1280-1300AD. I ‘m sympathetic to Maori history over 170 years since New Zealand first became a British colony. Those days are well and truly over and the Treaty of Waitangi land claim process has settled most claims for a total well over $1 billion dollars and rising. Of course the real claims should have been presented to the British Government in Whitehall, and would have been for billions. But NZ Maori would have to get in line for claims from other former colonies such as India. That of course is another story for another time. The Urewera police raids have become a blight on the reputation of the NZ Police and our society as a whole. But Tuhoe has not come out pf the controversy unscathed. The Children of the Mist have become a bit misty, in my opinion.Then of course, those actions  were replicated by the Dotcom raid in Auckland a couple of years ago –  an FBI organised and led police raid against internet mogul Kim Dotcom, a New Zealand resident. Throw in the Allen Arthur Thomas murder case and the police have a definate  smear to their reputation.

English: This is a head shot of Tame Iti taken...

English: This is a head shot of Tame Iti taken on 13 October 2009 on the street outside the Thistle Hall, Wellington shortly after the opening of Explosive Expression an art exhibition and auction organised by October 15th Solidarity to raise awareness and funds for those arrested in the ‘terror raids’. Photo taken in a public place with the explicit permission of the subject. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


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What could be more magical than to stand in the presence of a tree which has been growing since Bronze Age man?

Tane Mahuta, "God of the Forest", la...

Tane Mahuta, “God of the Forest”, largest living Kauri tree in New Zealand. Waipoua Forest, Northland, New Zealand. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The world’s oldest Kauri tree…–home-of-the-worlds-largest-and-oldest-kauri-trees/?cid=oid_facebook_int_052013_tane

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Work is progressing on Christchurch’s ‘Tannery’ Shopping Arcade in Woolston…

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Work is progressing on the Tannery shopping arcade in Woolston, and the first phase will open early next month.

The arcade is being built inside a former tannery building on the banks of the Heathcote River behind The Brewery bar in Woolston.

Tannery co-owner Zac Cassels said the first phase would include a bar, delicatessen, fashion stores, a tattoo parlour and Smith’s Bookshop, which used to be in Manchester St in the central city.

Cassels said the whole development should be complete by October and will have space for about 70 tenants.

A time-lapse video shows workers putting the final touches on the first phase of the development, laying a new floor and installing lighting.

The former tannery buildings date back to the 1870s and are part of Woolston’s history.

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Tuhoe – The Children of the Mist


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Labour to create and build – that has to be good for New Zealand…


Modern Kiwis saved by the rescue of one species a 100 years ago


Saving the Little Spotted Kiwi may have saved more than 1,500 modern kiwi species, research has confirmed.

The handful of kiwis were rescued and taken to the Kapiti Island bird sanctuary 100 years ago and a genetic analysis of the Little Spotted kiwi shows all modern birds are likely to have originated from that struggling group.

The Victoria-led study also found that attempts to increase genetic diversity by breeding Kapiti kiwi with the last survivors of a separate D’Urville Island population failed.

No genes from D’Urville Island kiwi could be found in current populations.

Despite a relatively large population, the low genetic diversity of the Kapiti descendants makes the species vulnerable to disease and environmental stresses according to the study.

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The City should have some input into what the new cathedral will be if the Anglican Church wants a $10 million contribution, surely…

ChristChurch-Cathedral--oct2012--Edward-SwiftThe Christchurch City Council has been asked to make provision for a $10 million contribution towards restoring Christ Church Cathedral over the next 10 years.

Mark Belton, from Restore Christchurch Cathedral, made a submission to the council this afternoon at its draft Three Year Plan (TYP) hearings.

Belton said the council had always been supportive of restoring the cathedral but now needed to put its money where its mouth was.

“Council has in the past always supported the cathedral and a year ago voted 10-4 for a pause to demolition so that restoration could be considered,” he said.

“Now that restoration is a distinct possibility, financial provision needs to be made so that the council can assist the restoration process.”

Belton asked the council to make a provision in the plan for up to a $10m contribution towards the restoration of the cathedral.

“The contribution might be spread over a 10-year period as a full restoration may take five to 10 years.”

The contribution would be in the form of $1m a year for up to 10 years, he said.

Belton believed a “realistic estimate” for restoring the cathedral would be $75m.

“A council offer of intitial support of $3m initially and provision for $1m per year up to a $10m cap if this level were requred would in our view be an appropriate showing of support for the city’s single most important restoration project,” he said.

“Council has a duty of care to protect and maintain our city‘s major cultural and historical assets. The cathedral without any question is the most potent symbol of our city’s historical roots. It is the city’s greatest historic and spirtual treasure.”

Cr Peter Beck said it would be “premature” of the council to allocate money to a restoration before that option was confirmed.

“I’d be really concerned if the council made a commitment to restoration before it has been decided what form the new cathedral will take,” he said.

Belton said it would be “amiss” of the council not to make provision in case restoration was wanted.


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Our boy Pride Petterson-Robati against Canberra Raiders May 2013…

Pride Petterson-Robati Pride Petterson-Robati of the Storm is tackled during the round eight Holden Cup match between the Melbourne Storm and the Canberra Raiders at AAMI Park on May 4, 2013 in Melbourne, Australia.

Holden Cup Rd 8 – Storm v Raiders
In This Photo: Pride Petterson-Robati

Pride Petterson-Robati of the Storm is tackled during the round eight Holden Cup match between the Melbourne Storm and the Canberra Raiders at AAMI Park on May 4, 2013 inMelbourne, Australia.

(May 3, 2013 – Source: Scott Barbour/Getty Images AsiaPac)
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Hawaiki the story…

Story: Hawaiki

‘Hawaiki’, by Wilhelm Dittmer

Hawaiki – a real island? Or a mythical place?

Hawaiki is the traditional Māori place of origin. The first Māori are said to have sailed to New Zealand from Hawaiki. And in Māori mythology Hawaiki is the place where Io, the supreme being, created the world and its first people. It is the place from which each person comes, and it is where each will return after death.

Full story by Te Ahukaramū Charles Royal
Main image: ‘Hawaiki’, by Wilhelm Dittmer
Tāwhaki Cape Rēinga An orator’s farewell for the dead Māui Hawaiki

The Short Story

A quick, easy summary

Read the Full Story

The source of life

Hawaiki is a place of great importance in Māori tradition, and appears in many songs, proverbs and whakapapa (genealogies). In tradition, the ancestors of Māori came to New Zealand from Hawaiki, navigating the seas in their canoes.

Hawaiki is seen as the place from which humans are born, and to which they go after death – it is strongly associated with the cycle of birth, life and death. Hawaiki represents all that is good and powerful. It is a mystical place, where people turn into birds or descend to the underworld

Home of the gods

In some traditions, the supreme being Io created Hawaiki. The gods are believed to live there, including the trickster demigod Māui, whose deeds are famous throughout Polynesia. The first woman, Hineahuone, was fashioned from the soil of Hawaiki.

Location unknown

Māori and Pākehā alike have wondered about the true location of Hawaiki. The actual location has never been confirmed, and it is uncertain if it is a real, physical island, or a mythical place. Some have associated Hawaiki with the Tahitian island Ra‘iātea (Rangiātea, in Māori). Like Hawaiki, Rangiātea is seen as both a physical and spiritual place.

Some people thought that Māori might have originated from Polynesia, India, or even Mesopotamia. More recent scholars admit it is difficult to decide on the ‘true’ location of a place that is also mythological.

You’ve read the short story, now read here:

Māori statue in Rotorua, New Zealand

Māori statue in Rotorua, New Zealand (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Note:  Peter Petterson, May 2013.  New information has emerged since this article was written. Hawaiki may well be in the area of modern Rarotonga and the Society Islands group, perhaps even  as far as Tahiti. The suggested date of the main migration to the then Aotearoa, now New Zealand, was 1280-1300 AD.
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