Could Different Species of Humans Still Exist?


Valued Senior Member
This thread is dedicated to MR.

The discovery that a different human species apparently continued living in what is now southern China until towards the end of the last ice age, a comparatively recent 14,000 years ago, has raised the question that must never be asked on Sciforums: could a variety of Homo that isn't Homo sapiens still exist out there?

Darren Curnoe, a professor at the University of New South Wales who was a leader of the team that studied these Chinese remains, told Discovery News that "It's always possible that a premodern human population still exists somewhere in the world". New species of animals are being discovered all the time, though he said that one would think that a large species would have already been noticed. He opined that if such hominins still existed, he would expect them to be located in some very thinly settled region like Siberia. And he noted that legends of Yeti-like creatures do exist in places like that.
Last edited:
Every fugitive or target of a manhunt would love to master the evasive skills that are innate with homo hirsutus and the hominid cryptids.
There are some unexplored areas left on earth, but they are few and small. If there is a human species other than ours, it can't be big in numbers, and seems to be contained in a small space. And they can't have settlements which one can spot from air, otherwise they had been found already.

I think the likelihood is above zero, but very, very small, since we have explored almost all of our planet meanwhile.
It all depends on the definition of species. Lions and tigers are considered two different species. They look different, they have different lifestyles, they vocalize differently, and they generally live on different continents. Yet when they are brought together, they can interbreed. Such hybrids are called tions and ligers.

The same definition of species, used for lions and tigers, if applied to humans, would mean if we found a pocket of undiscovered humans, who have different behaviors and looks, they would be considered a different species.

The separate lion and tiger species classification and the birth of ligers, may have been why human races were once considered different species. Lions and tigers are at the top of the food chain, just below human. However, this cataloging is no longer in practice for humans, even though lions and tigers are still treated as separate species. Science ended up with a dual standard to appease irrationally.
The human species called "Neanderthals" and the "homo sapiens" (our line) did interbreed. Not much, maybe not often, but there are still traces in our DNA to say, it happened.

Their offspring were not sterile, otherwise we couldn't find DNA traces some 30.000 years later.

Donkeys and horses can have offspring, but they are sterile.

Tigons and ligers are not generally sterile, but it seems their offspring is often weak and the DNA mix isn't good, so these hybrids don't appear often in second generation in the wild.

It's tricky. If the offspring are sterile it's fairly easy to say the parents are of different species because the hybrids cannot continue to breed. If individuals of two species can't have children together it's even easier. Everything else is a gray area.