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Posts Tagged ‘Goyet dogs’

Remember the post in which I analyzed the study that said dogs were 31,700 years old?

My biggest criticism of the study is that we have already seen extensive studies of dog molecular evolution that suggests that dogs come from East Asian wolves 15,000 years ago. I wanted to know how this study could square with that data.

Well, it turns out that it could square quite well, if we accept this study of mitochondrial DNA at Mathilda’s Anthropology. Essentially, the Europeans did have dogs at this time, but these animals were replaced with Asian dogs, at least in their matriline.

Why this happened is a good question. Perhaps Asian dogs were more fecund, or they had traits that made them of greater utility to domestic dogs. It is very hard to figure out.

This study adds further evidence we currently have only a fraction of the genetic diversity that once existed in the dog and wolf populations throughout the world.

This study also suggests that we definitely domesticated dog more than once. It’s just that one population of dogs wound up being superior to the others for some reason.

We also need to keep in mind that Asian wolves are also much more genetically diverse than any other populations of wolf. In fact, this diversity is so strong that some subspecies have been proposed to be separate species. I am, of  course, talking about the Indian wolf and Himalayan wolf.

I am not entirely convinced that they are separate species. Instead, I think their divergent genetics should be analyze in light of the studies that rather firmly suggest that wolves were originally a very diverse species.

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