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Homo erectus may have gone extinct because they were lazy, new research claims.
Scientists believe the 'least-effort strategies' employed to build tools and collect resources may have contributed to the downfall of the primitive human species.
Hominids - Tools - Homo - Erectus - Quality
Unlike other hominids, the tools created by Homo erectus were comparatively low quality and were predominantly built using materials that were lying around.
This is in sharp contrast to stone tools made by other hominid species, including early Homo sapiens and Neanderthals, who climbed mountains to find good quality stone and transported it over huge distances.
Laziness - Inability - Climate - Species - Scientists
This laziness paired with an inability to adapt to a changing climate likely resulted in the species going extinct, scientists say.
First thought to have evolved around 1.9 million years ago in Africa, Homo erectus was the first early hominid to become a true global traveller.
Africa - Eurasia - Georgia - Sri - Lanka
They are known to have migrated from Africa into Eurasia, spreading as far as Georgia, Sri Lanka, China and Indonesia.
It was previously thought Homo erectus disappeared some 400,000 years ago.
Date - Estimates - Years
However, this date has been dramatically reduced, with more recent estimates suggesting they went extinct just 140,000 years ago.
Research from the Australian National University (ANU) studied the ancient populations that lived in the Arabian Peninsula during the Early Stone Age.
'They - Lead - Researcher - Dr - Ceri
'They really don't seem to have been pushing themselves,' said lead researcher Dr Ceri Shipton of the ANU School of Culture, History and Language.
'I don't get the sense they were explorers looking over the horizon. They didn't have that same sense of wonder that we have,' he explained.
Homo - Erectus - Societies - Evidence - Homo
Homo erectus is thought to have lived in hunter-gatherer societies. Archaeological evidence suggests Homo erectus used fire and made basic stone tools.
Researchers said this lack of wonder was evident in the way the species...
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