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Footprints oldest evidence of humans in the Americas 23,000 years old

Discussion in 'The Living World' started by shunyadragon, Sep 23, 2021.

  1. rational experiences

    rational experiences Well-Known Member

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    The ice age ground frozen ended dinosaur life.

    Science would ask when did ice melt to cause muddy ground. How long did frozen stay frozen.
     
  2. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    OK, I checked somewhat about this, and from one source about this (above as you posted), it says about this, in part: "In a landmark study published on 23 September in Science1, researchers suggest that human footprints from an ancient lakeshore in the park date to between 21,000 and 23,000 years old. If the dating is accurate — which specialists say is likely — the prints represent the earliest unequivocal evidence of human occupation anywhere in the Americas."
    (Italics and underlining mine -- but it does leave open questions, saying "if" and "likely." So right now I'll leave it there, because there is more, and I appreciate your effort to explain. Thanks.)
     
  3. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    Another quote, yes I know this doesn't prove anything* BUT --
    "Matthew Bennett, a geoscientist at Bournemouth University in Poole, UK, who specializes in the study of fossil footprints. “Every time you uncover something it’s a potentially a different age. Dating is a nightmare.
    Dating is a nightmare? Not sure why he said that yet, but I think I might agree with him...::) For several reasons, but until I'm sure I won't add to that comment.
    *OK, it proves that dating is a nightmare. Maybe?
     
  4. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    No.

    It only means that dating can be difficult.
     
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  5. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Whether it did or not all academic discoveries and research such as this do multiple methods of dating including counting the individual varves (layers) in the lake deposits, yes, the primary method was Carbon 14 dating of the seeds endorsed by Bennitt.
     
    #45 shunyadragon, Sep 28, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
  6. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Yes there are difficulties in dating foot prints, but modern technology has resolved this in many cases. The basic dating was the seeds in sediments, which also confirmed these are varved lake deposits a very suitable habitat for early humans.

    I checked the Nature article, which is the most complete reference, and Bennett does acknowledge the difficulties of the dating methods concerning the footprints, but nonetheless he endorses the dating of these footprints. Incomplete selective citation of references without reading the whole article and understanding dating methods, and the research involved can be a problem

    From the reference in Nature.

    "In 2019, study co-author David Bustos, an archaeologist and resource manager at White Sands, identified a site on the playa that had tracks that led right into layers of rock-hard sediment. The rock contained seeds of spiral ditchgrass (Ruppia cirrhosa), an aquatic plant that could be carbon-dated to determine the age of the tracks. “That’s the holy grail of trying to date footprints,” says Bennett.

    He and his colleagues weren’t surprised when radiocarbon dating by researchers at the US Geological Survey in Denver, Colorado, determined that the seeds were between 21,000 and 23,000 years old, because a previous small-scale excavation had dated the sediment to around the same time. But Bennett says the team knew that claims of human occupation at this age would draw extreme scrutiny."
     
    #46 shunyadragon, Sep 28, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
  7. Wandering Monk

    Wandering Monk Well-Known Member

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    Reminds me of a headline I saw years ago:

    Anthropologist suggest first humans arrived in Ireland about 10,000 years ago. Prior to that, only the Irish lived there.

    The Onion
     
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  8. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    The article was likely written by an Englishman. I'm Irish and the Irish arrived a million years ago and would have rulled the world but unfortunately they invented Irish whiskey.
     
    #48 shunyadragon, Sep 28, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2021
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  9. Wandering Monk

    Wandering Monk Well-Known Member

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    I thoroughly enjoyed Thomas Cahill's book, How the Irish Saved Civilization. Guessing you might have read it?
     
  10. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Yes
     
  11. SkepticThinker

    SkepticThinker Veteran Member

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    "While the nature of the physical evidence here is harder to dismiss, the researchers had to ensure the dating evidence was - quite literally - watertight.

    A potential complication flagged up by the journal during the early stages of review was the "reservoir effect". This refers to the way that old carbon can sometimes get recycled in aqueous environments, interfering with radiocarbon results by making a site seem older than it is.

    However, the team members say they have accounted for this effect and believe it is not significant here.

    Prof Tom Higham, a radiocarbon dating expert at the University of Vienna, said: "They've undertaken some checks on the dates of material from near to the footprint location and found that fully terrestrial samples (charcoal) produced ages similar to those of the aquatic species they dated from nearer to the footprints.

    "They've also argued, I think justifiably, that the lake must have been shallow at the time people walked there, mitigating the effect of reservoir effects introduced by old carbon sources." The consistency of the results and the support from a different dating technique applied to the site both supported the validity of the results, he added."

    Footprints in New Mexico are oldest evidence of humans in the Americas
     
  12. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    That is in part what I'm wondering about, the seeds. Hmm, might they have drifted from another area, and how are they dated? So give or take a few million when it comes to when an area was first lived in by humans? OK, just kidding, rather a few thousand, perhaps. Now I do wonder why Bennett said claims of human occupation would draw extreme scrutiny. Wonder why...at least he expressed himself rather than closing it down. As I'm looking at this, why date the seeds and not the soil the footprints were embedded in? Which makes me wonder about dating cave paintings. Hmm again. Anyway, I don't drink whiskey, but I do drink wine. Maybe I'll have some later. :) Plus I like Irish music. Not to get off the subject, Wild Rover is one of my favs. OK, back to cave painting dating. OK not back to cave painting dating. Back to the seeds on the footprints.
     
  13. SkepticThinker

    SkepticThinker Veteran Member

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    Why don't you write the authors with your questions and concerns?
     
  14. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    No, the sediments are from an inland lake with no outlet to the sea. These are not plants associated with the coast of a sea. They are associated with shallow coasts of freshwater lakes. Even if the could have come from the sea they would be the same age.

    Bennett has described the dating as difficult, but NOT that it cannot be done.

    Primarily Carbon-14 endorsed by Bennett.


    ALL scientific discoveries are subject to scrutiny by peer review and other scientists. A new discovery is subject to greater scrutiny.



    The cave paintings are separate issue, which I already addressed
     
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  15. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    True that he said carbon-14 dating is the "holy grail" of dating, but he also said that dating objects is a nightmare. Why do you think he said that? And how in reference to this exploration?
    Still the seeds (not the footprints) were determined to be between 21,000 and 23, 000 years old. Apparently they went by previous determination of the sediment, dating process of the previous analysis not spoken of there, unless I missed that point. I guess you have given me all the possible answers you can, and -- while guesses are made -- it is estimated based on previous determination of the soil's age (dating process there?) and then I have questions about the dating of the seeds. But thank you for your response.
     
  16. shunyadragon

    shunyadragon shunyadragon
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    Your misunderstanding Bennett, and misrepresenting him. As far his comment on the specific evidence for these footprints, and NOT that Carbon-14 dating for all footprints. He considered the specific evidence in this case as conclusive as to the dating of the foot prints, Yes in many cases where the dating of footprints by Carbon-14 dating of footprints is very difficult and inconclusive.

    You not only need a better education in science, but also in the English language,


    Your reading too much into the research without a knowledge of science and scientific methods.
     
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  17. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    Can't say I completely understand this. Meaning how did those plant seeds get to be embedded in the tracks. However,perhaps later...

    The cave paintings -- again -- perhaps datails later. I thank you for your answers.
     
    #57 YoursTrue, Sep 29, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2021
  18. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    I'm sorry, you probably meant to say "You're misunderstanding Bennett," as you wrote above, didn't you? I'm sure since you are so well versed in the English language that was a casual error. It happens.
    Before I go, here is one assessment of carbon-14 dating, in part, of course. "Is carbon dating accurate? Only to a certain extent. In order for carbon dating to be accurate, we must know what the ratio of carbon-12 to carbon-14 was in the environment in which our specimen lived during its lifetime." Is Carbon Dating Accurate? (allaboutarchaeology.org)
     
    #58 YoursTrue, Sep 29, 2021
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2021
  19. YoursTrue

    YoursTrue Faith-confidence in what we hope for (Hebrews 11)

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    Radio carbon dating is used.
     
  20. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    Correct. And like all tools there are times that one cannot use it. They checked very carefully, that means in more than just one way, that this was not the case.

    Do you understand that radiometric dating is very reliable when done properly?
     
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