Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

We need a new popular name for Paranthropus boisei


When first reported, this hominin was given the name Zinjanthropus boisei. He was considered to be a human ancestor and was portrayed as an upright hairy apeman. Later, he was renamed Australopithecus boisei, but then was moved to a separate genus, receiving the name Paranthropus boisei. He still appears in some presentations of human ancestry. What makes him memorable are his magnificent teeth:

“For decades, scientists thought that the large, heavy teeth the primates had were used in cracking open hard foods such as nuts. The common name for Paranthropus was “Nutcracker Man” for this very reason.”

[. . .]
[The take-home message:]
Nutcracker Man is a notable example of how morphology was wrongly interpreted for decades and only recently overturned. The problem with “conventional wisdom” is that it has been led by a dogma about the nature of evolutionary transformation from ape-like ancestor to humanity and it is long overdue that this “wisdom” be subjected to some systematic and rational critical scrutiny.

Maybe it will help if this particular fossil hominin gets a new popular name. It was not a nutcracker nor was it a man! It was a specialised (derived) ape that fed primarily on grass and is now extinct. It has nothing to do with human ancestry. Any thoughts on a suitable popular name?

For more, go here.

Pseudo-man. Pseudonym. Cud-man. Goat. Ape-ing Cow. "Somekind of enormous alien cow." http://www.homestarrunner.com/sbemail144.html Collin
Eco Ape snelldl
It was a specialised (derived) ape that fed primarily on grass and is now extinct. Clearly, it's sumkina gnuApe. Charles
C4PB Grass Man Lawnmower Man snelldl
Cow Boy Named Sue??? Enezio E. De Almeida Filho
Who was it suggested Cow boy? Is that guy still around? O'Leary

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