Defending the Aquatic Ape Hypothesis

When it comes to the question of human origins, there are certain traits we possess which cannot straightforwardly be explained by the coming-down-from-the-trees hypothesis, especially as they relate to some major differences between humans and the rest of the great apes:

We are the only apes to possess subcutaneous fat (this is why we don't sink like a ton of bricks in water), we are the only ones permanently bipedal, we are the only ones with the ability to vocalize and volitionally regulate inhalation and exhalation, we are streamlined and equiped with a very flexible spine that makes our swimming graceful and swift, we are the only naked apes, we have genes for webbed toes and fingers, we have a diving reflex that slows down our heartbeat when we submerge our face in water, human babies are the only baby apes who can instinctually swim underwater and hold their breath without any sign of panic or distress, and finally, women look great in bikinis :) I honestly can't remember the last time I got turned on by a gorilla wearing a two-piece...

There is one hypothesis that attempts to explain all these interesting facts, and octogenarian scientist Elaine Morgan is here to defend it: our evolutionary ancestors were aquatic creatures. I also get the sense she's about to make some yummy cookies and tell us an awesome bed-time story, but let's get on with her agenda first in this captivating and delicious presentation.


You don't believe me about the babies? Go ahead, drop a baby in water and see what happens :)

For more on this hypothesis, check out The Hunting Ape, with zoologist Desmond Morris.

Unfortunately, there are many aspects of our morphology the aquatic ape hypothesis can't explain, not to mention the almost complete absence of a fossil record to support it, but maybe it's time to put the speculation to rest and find evidence that can confirm or refute this awesome hypothesis because, let's face it, right or wrong, it is pretty damn cool :)
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