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Old 11-03-2017, 05:36 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
3,533 posts, read 1,375,363 times
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Wwf: ecco l’orango di Tapanuli, una nuova specie in Indonesia - La Stampa

A new species of orangutan has been described living in Sumatra. They've been studying, since 1997, an isolated population of ~800 individuals living in 1100 sq km of forest. Now they've got genetic evidence that it's separate from the other two known species of orangs. In fact, it seems to be the root stock from which the other two separated.

There's apparently a good deal of pressure from mining & lumbering concerns on this particular forest. The WWF is investing a great deal of time & money trying to preserve it. With only 800 individuals, the species is in real danger of extinction. (Population math studies tell us that breeding populations of <500 are doomed to extinction.)
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Old 11-06-2017, 09:29 AM
 
Location: Seattle WA, USA
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Seems what they consider a different species for other apes, constitutes as race/culture for humans.

"The team compared the skull and jaws to those of 33 other adult male orangutans, held in the collections of 10 institutions around the world, revealing differences in numerous metrics – including that the skull of the Tapanuli male is smaller than that of individuals of the other two species.
The authors also looked at the characteristics of living individuals, noting that the long booming calls of the Tapanuli males differ from those of the two other known species and that the creatures have more cinnamon-coloured pelts than Bornean orangutans, with a frizzier texture – particularly when compared to the loose locks of Sumatran orangutans. The team also made note of the facial hair of the Tapanuli orangutans, pointing out that dominant males have prominent moustaches, and the females sport beards."
https://www.theguardian.com/science/...-tapanuliensis

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Old 11-09-2017, 03:02 PM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
3,533 posts, read 1,375,363 times
Reputation: 7899
Quote:
Originally Posted by grega94 View Post
Seems what they consider a different species for other apes, constitutes as race/culture for humans.
Before we had genetic studies available, we could only define species based on physical characteristics. Now that we can genotype, we find that many of our previous assumptions about relations between & among species were wrong.

In regards humans, there are many obvious physical differences among subspecies (races), but that has to do with allele frequencies in different breeding populations, not differences in numbers of chromosomes or loci on each chromosome-- they are all the same among us.

The article I read didn't go into specifics, but I'm guessing they must have significantly different genetic maps among the three orang populations if they're claiming a new species.

Cf- a horse has 32 chromosome pairs; a donkey has 31. They look enough alike that one might be tempted to call them the same species, going only by appearances.
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