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自然界英文翻译 当人们逃离鬣狗的时候

时间:2011-01-13 09:57    点击:
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When People Fled Hyenas
Oversized Hyenas May Have Delayed Human Arrival in North America
当人们逃离鬣狗的时候
超大型的鬣狗可能推迟了人们到达美国北部
 

Nov. 20 - Deep inside a cave in Siberia's Altai Mountains, Christy Turner and his Russian colleagues may have found an answer to a question that has hounded him for more than three decades.
As a young anthropologist, Turner spent time in Alaska's Aleutian Islands in the 1970s, working at several archaeological sites and occasionally gazing westward toward Siberia. 十一月二十日,在西伯利亚Altai山一个洞穴深处,Christy Turner和他的俄国同事可能发现了困扰了他三十多年的问题的答案。
作为一个年轻的人类学家,Turner上世纪七十年代一直在阿拉斯加州的阿留申岛一些考古地点从事研究工作,有时,他会向着西部的西伯利亚凝视。
 
"I thought, 'That's the place that Native Americans came from,' " he says now from his laboratory at Arizona State University in Tempe. But why, he wondered then as he still wonders today, did it take them so long? The Bering Land Bridge that the first Americans crossed into the New World from Siberia had been there for thousands of years before those first immigrants arrived, most likely around 12,000 years ago. Archaeological evidence suggests the bridge surfaced repeatedly for at least 40,000 years as seawater became trapped in glaciers during the last Ice Age. "我认为,' 那是土著美国人来的地方,'"他在谭蓓谷的亚历桑那州大学的实验室里说道。但是,他当时感到纳闷,就像现在他仍然感到纳闷一样,为什么要花他们如此长时间才到达北美?第一批从西伯利亚来的美国人到达新世界要经过白令陆地桥。当第一批移民大约在12,000 年前到达白令陆地桥时,它已经存在了数千年。考古证据表明桥面反复浮出水面至少有40,000年,这时海水在上世纪冰川期间结成了冰。
North America was one of the last places on the planet to be populated by humans, and "there has to have been a series of things that kept people out of the New World until very, very late," Turner says.
The evidence he and his colleagues have uncovered, he says, suggests that one player in that drama may have been a most unlikely, and yet terrifying, villain. The hyena. 北美洲是地球上人类居住的最后的地方之一,并且"可能那里曾经发生了一系列事情致使人们远离新世界直到很久很久以后才移居到这里。"Turner说。
他说他和同事们发现的证据表明,在这个戏剧中扮演角色的很可能是令人难以置信的,然而又是令人感到恐怖的一种野兽--鬣狗。
 
Human-Hungry Hyenas?
Ancient hyenas were larger than their relatives found today in Asia and Africa, and even the modern hyena has a jaw so powerful it can crush the leg of a rhinoceros, Turner says. Modern hyenas tend to be fearless in the presence of humans, and they have been known to drag a human hunter from a tent in Africa and crush his bones like toothpicks. 人受制于饥饿的鬣狗?
Turner说,古代的鬣狗比今天在亚洲和非洲发现的同类鬣狗体型大,现代的鬣狗有着甚至能压碎犀牛腿的强有力的颚。现代的鬣狗在人面前是不害怕的。 据悉,它们曾经在非洲从一个帐篷中拖出一个猎人并且像压牙签一样地压碎他的骨头。
 
Could it be that the human migration into the Americas was held up by a nasty beast that preyed on people in the darkness of night, forcing them to remain far south of the land bridge that would have taken them to a new world? 可能会是那些在黑夜中袭击人的讨厌的野兽,是它们阻止了人们移民去美洲,迫使人们留在远离通向新世界的陆地桥南方吗?
Turner is the first to admit he doesn't know the answer to that. Not enough evidence is in yet to draw any strong conclusions, so at this point this is all scientific theorizing. But the clues so far are tantalizing. When People Fled Hyenas Oversized Hyenas May Have Delayed Human Arrival in North America
But one set of bones especially intrigues Turner. Turner 最先承认他不知道此问题的答案。没有足够的证据可以得出有说服力的结论,对这一点仅仅是科学推论。但线索迄今尚不明朗。但是有一组骨头尤其激起 Turner 的兴趣。
"We found a true dog skull," he says. "We've dated the skull to about 14,000 years ago, and it's a domesticated dog," so much smaller than a wolf that it would not have survived if it had not been domesticated. The dog, he adds, was dragged into the cave, where it was devoured by hyenas. It's the oldest dog ever found in Siberia, Turner says, and it was domesticated just before humans started their migration north, leading them eventually to the Americas. "The coincidence is so remarkable," he says. "Once we get the dog, then we get people in the new world almost immediately." "我们发现了一个真正的狗的头盖骨,"他说。 " 我们通过头骨发现这是14,000前的狗的头骨,而且它是一只家养的狗。" 它比狼小得多,而且如果不是被驯养,它不可能存活。那只狗被鬣狗拖进到洞中,然后被吞食了,他补充道。这是曾经在西伯利亚发现的年代最久远的狗,Turner 说,而且它在人类开始北移,最终导致他们到达美国之前就被驯养了。" 巧合是如此惊人,"他说。 " 我们一旦找到狗,然后几乎是紧接着,我们就找到在新世界的人类。
Dogs Save the Day 家狗帮助人战胜鬣狗
Although at this point it's largely guesswork, Turner thinks it's quite possible that those early Siberians domesticated the dog in an effort to protect themselves from hyenas. A dog will bark at anything that approaches its territory, so barking dogs might have helped keep hyenas away from hunting camps. 虽然在这点上大多是猜测,但是 Turner 认为很可能那些早期西伯利亚人驯养家狗目的是努力保护自己不被鬣狗袭击。家狗会对任何靠近它领地的威胁吠叫,所以吠叫的狗也许促使了鬣狗无法靠近猎人的帐篷。
 
At the very least, it would have alerted humans to an approaching horde of bone-crushing beasts. 至少,那会让人类对靠近的噬骨野兽群存有提防之心。
That, Turner theorizes, might have finally given humans the edge, allowing them to encroach further into land thick with hyenas. Turner推理道,那也许会最终给人类以一种优势,使他们能进一步地占据鬣狗密集活动的土地。
Eventually, the humans found the bridge across the Bering Sea, about 2,000 years before the hyenas themselves, along with many other larger animals, died out. 最后,在鬣狗和许多大型动物灭绝前2,000年左右的时间,人们发现了横穿白令海峡的桥。
There are many uncertainties and gaps in the archaeological record, because the hyena has been largely ignored by anthropologists, Turner says.There are many uncertainties and gaps in the archaeological record, because the hyena has been largely ignored by anthropologists, Turner says. 因为鬣狗大部分被人类学家所忽视,所以在考古学记载上有许多不确定和脱漏之处, Turner说。
But if he's right, those nasty critters kept us out of here for thousands of years, and dogs finally let us in. ABCNEWS 但是如果他是正确的,那么数千年来那些讨厌的野兽使我们远离这里,而家狗最终让我们得以来到这里。
 

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