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Humans ate fish 40,000 years ago

By analyzing the chemical compositions of the protein collagen found in an ancient human skeleton from Tianyuan Cave near Beijing, scientists have concluded that the person ate fish.

Fishing at this time must have involved considerable effort, the researchers think, because fossil records suggest humans were not using sophisticated tools — beyond crude stone blades — until about 50,000 years ago.

“This analysis provides the first direct evidence for the consumption of aquatic resources by early modern humans in China and has implications for early modern human subsistence and demography,” said Michael P. Richards of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.

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