Two studies about the First Americans

new&nerdlyHow many migrations, initially, did it take to populate the New World from the Old?  There’s a new study to be published tomorrow in the journal Science which takes a fresh look, using new statistical models, into the first peopling of the Americas.  You can take a peek at it, though, at Science Express:

Genomic evidence for the Pleistocene and recent population history of Native Americans

Or, for the less nerdy:

According to this study the answer is one, not counting those that brought the Paleo-Eskimo and Inuit to frozen shores of the Arctic.  The ancestors of all other Native Americans arrived in one migration event no later than 23,000 years ago, whereupon they settled, for the most part, in Beringia for about 8,000 years.  However, there was still some admixture going on with East Asian/Austro-Melanesian populations.  This probably happened through contact with inhabitants of the Aleutian Islands.  Between 11,500 and 14,000 years ago, a split occurred in the lineages of the Americas between the ancestors of the Athabascan peoples of Northern North America and those of the Amerindians of Southern North America, Central America, and South America.  Remember, the ice melted enough for people to reach interior North America about 15,000 years ago through two routes, a coastal route and the so called Ice Free Corridor.  And it was about 13,000 years ago when the Clovis Complex arose, interestingly enough.

Also of interest is another study, this one published in the journal Nature, that elucidates, a bit, on the Austro-Melanesian connection:

Genetic evidence for two founding populations of the AmericasNature
July 21, 2015

This study, which focuses on Amazonia, says that a single population, what they’re calling Population Y, interbred with the ancestors of Amerindians very early, indeed.



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