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Are neanderthals and homosapiens different species?

I might be really wrong but from what I know Neanderthals and Homosapiens are different species. I also know that different species can't produce fertile offsprings. If Neanderthals and Homosapiens were different species how come some of us have Neanderthal gene? Does that mean we were the same species? Someone please help me out 

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  • 4 weeks ago

    Yes, HomoSapiens and HomoNeanderthal are different species. However, they are close enough to have interbred. This interaction is what caused Caucasians (white races) to develop

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  • oikoσ
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    You do not "know" that different species can't produce fertile offspring. As a matter of fact, there are minnows that are completely interfertile across generic lines. Dobzhansky, the author of the genetic species concept (it is no more "biological" than any other concept) may have been a good geneticist but was a lousy systematist. Homo neanderthalensis and H. sapiens are perfectly good species. Or at least as good as any "human species" are.

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  • CRR
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    It think you've summed up the problem pretty well. The problem is in the definition of species. According to the biological species concept they would be varieties within the same species because of the evidence they interbred. A phylogenetic species is the smallest group of populations that can be distinguished by a unique set of morphological or genetic traits, even though they can interbreed.

    Just recently African elephants were declared to be two species even though there are existing hybrid populations.

    Maybe we just need to accept that "species" is a man made category of convenience and has no fundamental biological reality. Rather the Kind is the basic biological division of which species and genera are more or less arbitrary subdivisions. Neanderthals and Homosapiens are different species within the same Kind.

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    • CRR
      Lv 7
      1 month agoReport

      "species" means whatever some taxonomist wants it to mean. Remember how recently African elephants were declared to be 2 species even though there are existing hybrid populations?

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  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Neanderthals are simply another name for homo sapiens. Both are humans with same DNA and everything. The skulls found are really just humans that have arthiritis. They are NOT a tranisitory form.

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  • 2 months ago

    I sent you a link to a web page in response to this question yesterday.

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  • 2 months ago

    Although the narratives of human evolution are often contentious, DNA evidence shows that human evolution should not be seen as a simple linear or branched progression, but a mix of related species. In fact, genomic research has shown that hybridization between substantially diverged lineages is the rule, not the exception, in human evolution. Furthermore, it is argued that hybridization was an essential driving force in the emergence of modern humans.

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  • Zirp
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    No, they had a lot of fertile offspring together.

    You can call them different RACES in the real sense of the word, not the congoid/mongoloid/caucasoid fairytale-sense

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  • 2 months ago

    The biological species concept states that species are reproductively isolated entities - that is, they breed within themselves but not with other species. Thus all living Homo sapiens have the potential to breed with each other, but could not successfully interbreed with gorillas or chimpanzees, our closest living relatives.

    On this basis, 'species' that interbreed with each other cannot actually be distinct species.

    Critics who disagree that H. neanderthalensis and H. sapiens are two separate species can now cite supporting evidence from recent genetic research. This indicates that the two interbred with each other when they met outside Africa about 55,000 years ago. As a result, everyone today whose ancestors lived outside Africa at that time has inherited a small but significant amount of Neanderthal DNA, which makes up about 2% of their genomes.

    Source(s): These are quotes taken directly from an article that I found on the subject that I felt most directly addresses your question. https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/are-neanderthals-sa...
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  • JimZ
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    It appears that Neanderthals and humans hybridized on at least two occasions where they left ancestors with modern DNA.  East Asians have slightly more Neanderthal DNA and so it is believed there was another hybridization after the original hybrids migrated from the Middle East.  You can sometimes have viable offspring with hybrids.  With horses and donkeys, only about one in million have offspring that can breed and generally those offspring die off after the next generation.  Clearly horses and donkeys are different species.  It isn't always so cut and dry.  I think in the case of Neanderthal and humans, what you need to consider is that the hybrids (Mostly human genes) lived together with Neanderthals for 40 thousand years from 70 to 30 thousand years ago and as far as is known didn't interbreed except once in Asia.  That is pretty good evidence they didn't mix much and maybe aren't all that viable.  I think it is legit to call them separate species but the line separating species can be somewhat arbitrary.  We have evidence that the last common ancestor with chimps hybridized with the Chimp branch on one occasion at least.  This hybridization is somewhat common and if it produces adaptations then maybe they will be incorporated in the new population too.  

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  • 2 months ago

    That's still a matter of debate among biologists.

    Neanderthals are either considered a separate species (H. Neanderthalensis) or a subspecies (H. Sapiens Neanderthalensis.)

    Either way, part of the problem is that the definition of 'species' we were all taught in middle school was - like much of  the science we learned then - an oversimplification that we didn't get beyond until college.

    Regardless, most populations of humans today have some fraction of Neanderthal genes.

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