Bones, Tools Push Back Human Settlement in Arctic Region

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The technology needed to thrive in such an enviroment—tools made of different materials such as wood, antler, tusk, and hide—are more often associated with modern humans, said John Gowlett, an archaeologist at the University of Liverpool in the United Kingdom. The ability to smoke and store enough food to last through the winter is also more often attributed to skill levels attained by modern humans.

Still, the authors say that the evidence for either Neandertals or modern humans as the early occupants is inconclusive.

"It is very easy to argue this either way," said Gowlett.

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