Mapping Human Migration with Y-DNA  - Last update 12/26/2012
FTDNA help pages have the answers to questions about Y-chromosome DNA (Y-DNA) test results.

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TIME LINE: HUMAN MIGRATION  --  Rechecked 11/21/2012

The Genographic Project is creating a picture of when and where ancient humans moved around the world by mapping the genetic markers in modern peoples. These great migrations eventually led the descendants of a small group of Africans to occupy even the farthest reaches of the earth.  I discovered that this project only uses the first 12 markers of the genealogical genetic coding.  Therefore these data are not as detailed as, for instance, the data at FTDNA.  I have even written them about the disparity in one of my markers between FTDNA and Geo - their response was that different uses sometimes produces different results - not very satisfying.  Still, give or take a few thousand years this time line should be useful.

Read more:   

200,000 – 150,000 years ago:  The genetic journey of everyone alive today began with one woman — “Scientific Eve” — and one man --- "Scientific Adam" --- who lived in Africa and passed along their DNA.  The mtDNA or mitochondria DNA was passed from Eve thru her daughters to all women living today, while the Y-DNA was passed to Adam's sons and on down to those living today.  Skeletal and archaeological evidence suggest that anatomically modern humans evolved in Africa around 200,000 years ago, and began moving out of Africa to colonize the rest of the world around 60,000 years ago.

195,000 years ago:  No one knows when modern humans first appeared, but the oldest skulls and bones of anatomically modern humans were found in Ethiopia’s Omo River Valley by paleoanthropologist Richard Leakey in 1967. Our ancient homo sapient ancestors remained in Africa for as long as three-quarters of our history as a species.

150,000 years ago:  The first branch point on our human family tree is marked by the earliest major movement of humans:  One group headed to southern Africa and the other to eastern Africa — and later, to the rest of the world.

130,000 – 70,000 years ago:  It is believed that our cradle of humanity transformed into desert due to constant climate change from cold to hot, nearly wiping humans off the earth. Based on the lack of genetic variation from this time, it is possible that the number dropped to as few as 2,000 birthing women, making us an endangered species.
Aug 19, 2014: A new study of Paleolithic stone tools from 17 sites in North Africa shows that between 130,000 and 75,000 years ago, there were at least four separate populations in the region, each with its own distinctive cultural traits, reports  Researchers led by University of Oxford visiting scholar Eleanor Scerri made 300,000 measurements on stone tools and combined the data with enviromental reconstuctions of prehistoric North Africa to analyze how modern human populations dispersed across the Sahara using ancient rivers and streams that no longer exist.  "This is the first time that scientists have identified that early modern humans at the cusp of dispersal out of Africa were grouped in separate, isolated and local populations," says Scerri.  "Our picture of modern human demography around 100,000 years ago is that there were a number of populations, varying in size and degree of genetic contact, distributed over a wide geographical area." According to SScerri , the team's work supports the theory that modern humans left Africa before 60,000-50,000 years ago.

70,000 years ago:  Climate studies indicate the drought in Africa subsided for a time and the human population resumed growing. Archaeological evidence reveals that tools from this period appear across the continent, and the genetics show new lineages taking root.

60,000 years ago:  (M168)(A)  “Scientific Adam” is the common male ancestor of every living person today and the one who has provided every male with a Y chromosome. Because he lived in Africa some 60,000 years ago, the ancestors of all humans living today must have lived there until at least that time. 

50,000 years ago: (B, E) Some scientists theorize one wave of humans migrated out of Africa by crossing at the southern tip of the Red Sea to the Arabian Peninsula (a mere 17 miles apart). It is unknown whether they would have walked, swam, or rafted.

50,000 years ago:  (CT, D) Humans first arrived in Southeast Asia, perhaps by journeying along the coasts of modern-day Iran, Pakistan and India. At that time, one continuous landmass connected Asia with southern Indonesia, just north of Australia.

45,000 – 40,000 years ago:  (M89) Archaeological records show that humans moved into Australia. Their voyage may have been made possible by the shifting landmasses and lower sea levels of this glacial period.

40,000 – 35,000 years ago: (M9)(M45)  Africans who had moved into the Middle East during wet climatic periods found themselves on a vast “steppe highway” that ran to China and Korea. As they hunted game, these people gradually dispersed along the steppes and populated much of Eurasia.

40,000 – 35,000 years ago:  Despite the conditions of a frigid ice age, a hardy band of mammoth hunters moved onto the tundra of southern Siberia. There, they began to develop specialized cold-climate skills that would allow them to populate northeast Siberia and eventually North America.

30,000 years ago: There emerged M207, M173 and M343 the direct descendants of Cro-Magnon.

28,000 years ago:  Archaeological evidence indicates that the Rock of Gibraltar, Europe’s southernmost tip, is the last place Neanderthals lived in Europe before becoming extinct. Modern humans later occupied the same site Neanderthals had established, though the two groups never met at Gibraltar.

25,000 years ago:  Haplogroup R1b split off from the base R group some where around to Ural Mountains, and followed the melting glacers Westward back into Europe.

20,000 – 15,000 years ago:  Some scientists believe that the first Americans entered the North American continent through the area now known as Alaska, crossing from Siberia by way of a temporary “land bridge.” Advanced tools that were popular in Asia later appeared in North America.

14,000 years ago:  Monte Verde is the location of an archeological site in Chile, where 14,000-year-old bits of seaweed stuck to the blades of ancient stone tools suggest people were already living near the bottom of South America earlier than previously thought. Recently, the Monte Verde site was accepted as a UNESCO World Heritage site.

11,000 years ago:  With the ice age ending, the landmass binding Russia and Alaska vanished into the sea. The first Americans are now isolated from their past and families, altho having made the decision to make the crossing I suspect that they had already accepted that and made their goodbyes.

However, many now believe it is a strong probability that neither the migration from Siberia nor the Viking arrival in north America was the first human migration.   There is a hand full of scientist that believe that migration was made from Europe even before the Siberia migration.  They have found indication that extensive copper mining was carried out in northeastern U.S. and Amerindians are not known to have ever work copper.   I worked with a fellow from the upper peninsular that told me you could still find pure raw copper where he lived.   Read about the Clovis and fulsom points and about the Younger Dryas impact hypothesis with dates at  15,000 years ago.

About 25,000 yrs ago the Q lines from FTDNA migration maps go to North central Eurasia then split and turn back to Northwest Europe toward Scandinavia, while the rest of Q continued on into the Americas.  Over 90% of Amerindians are of this linage (Amerindian seems to be the new word describing the original tribes of the Americas).

For what significance it may be, when referring to the DNA “fitness score” the “Q” marker is running a close second to “R1b” in my DNA.  I am still stuck on our family tradition that 4GMother was an Amerindian, even though I have no paperwork to qualify that.  Then on the other hand the “Q” of my DNA could be a result of the “Q” turning Northwest about 24,000 Yrs ago.

Yet, if this is true then my speculating that we have a Scandinavian mixture in our line could once again hold true.

This text is extracted from the very good book "The Journey of Man a genetic odyssey" by Spencer Wells, Princeton University Press, First Edition.  Also from Family Tree Maker, and National Geographic's Genomproject.  The book does not go into detail of how to interpret or date individual Y-chromosome or mtDNA.   Although mtDNA leads us farther back in time it does not lend itself to population tracing as does the Y-chromosome.

The book details what anthropologist now believe to be the path of mankind from the last point of near extinction of homo sapiens some 80,000 years ago. This book does not go into detail of how to interpret or date individual Y-chromosome or mtDNA.

Posted 2008.06.22:  Lake Toba is the site of one of the greatest volcanic eruption so far documented in earths history.  Located in present day Sumatra this eruption which occurred about 80,000-72,000 years ago is thought to have brought mankind to the brink of extinction.  Recent theory believes about 30,000 people lived thru the Toba explosion and it's devastating aftermath.  However, only about 5,000 were female of breeding age.

Posted 11/11/2008:  There is a caldera in Yellowstone National Park that blows about every 600,000 years and it's overdue.  If it explodes it will be as devastating as was Toba.  Cockroaches and alligators saw the dinosaur go extinct so they will survive.  I expect the Inuit and many living in Siberia and Canada to survive also unless they forget how their grandfathers hunted.  So humans will probably be around even after most of us are killed off in the next big bang.  I expect city folks to go first, then suburban, then country folks.  Has anyone tried to grow food crops in asphalt or concrete?

Map of Lake Toba.

 Special feature: Lake Toba in "virtual photographs"  panoramic displays of Lake Toba.

Credits:  Prof. Dr. William Bowen,  California Geographical Survey,  10907 Rathburn Avenue,  Northridge, CA 91326, USA .panoramic displays of Lake Toba.

19th February 2005


   Fig. 2-2.  Graphic of Lake Toba.  The eruption of 73,000 years ago left the Sibandung caldera.  Lake Toba is surrounded by two small, active volcanos as well as several updomed areas and hot springs. These features indicate that there is activity below the surface today and that pressure is rising. Samosir island, too, is evidence for upthrust from below.  From the record it seems that Toba produces major eruptions every 300-400,000 years and that it will erupt again - but not any time soon.

Volcanic features in and around Lake Toba today:  gray area Present-day topographic depression
green area Updomed areas:  1 Sibandung caldera: made 73,000 years ago by the Toba YTT event (Young Toba Ash)  2 Haranggaol caldera: made 500,000 years ago by the Toba MTT event (Middle Toba Ash) 
3 Sibandung caldera: made 800,000 years ago by the Toba OTT event (Old Toba Ash)

The MTT and OTT events were not as large as the YTT event of 73,000 years ago but were still major eruptions of at least VEI 7. 

V1 Tandukbenua (Sipisopiso) - young dacit-andesite volcano.  V2 Pusubukit volcano - young dacit-andesite volcano.  D1 Pardepur dacite domes.  D2 Tuk-tuk rhyolite dome. 
HS Hot springs 

 Supervolcano Rained Acid on Both Poles—But Wasn't So Bad After All?

Published November 7, 2012    James Owen    for National Geographic News

It was the largest volcanic eruption of the last two million years—an estimated 5,000 times larger than Mount St. Helens's 1980 blast, with enough lava to create two Mount Everests.   Toba was Mount St. Helens times 5,000, but new evidence softens the fallout..

Roughly 74,000 years ago, Indonesia's Toba supervolcano pumped massive amounts of sun-shrouding ash and gases into the atmosphere, cooling the planet, possibly devastating early humanity, and—a new study reveals—raining sulfuric acid on both poles.   Scientists have long debated just how extensive and enduring those effects were. One study, for example suggested the Toba blast spawned a thousand-year ice age that only some 10,000 individuals survived.

Another has found evidence of humans thriving in relatively nearby India shortly after the eruption.   The new study—based on acid rain-tainted ice cores from Antarctica and Greenland—suggests Toba's fallout wasn't quite as catastrophic as might be expected.   The Antarctic ice core, for example, even bears traces of a warming event just after the Toba eruption—contrary to a strong cooling signal seen in the Greenland cores.   "That means there's no long-term global cooling caused by the eruption," study co-author Anders Svensson said.   If there had been, you'd expect to see evidence of a chill at both Poles.   In fact, the post-Toba Antarctic cooling spike looks well, relatively ordinary.  "There may have been shorter [global] cooling of a duration of maybe 10 or 20 years, like we see for more recent"—and much less powerful—"volcanoes," said Svensson, of the Niels Bohr Institute's Centre for Ice and Climate in Copenhagen.

Toba's Human Toll

Toba was "certainly not causing long-term cooling of a thousand years, or even a hundred," Svensson said. "It seems like humans lived on and everything is recovering."   Of course that would have depended in part on location.   It's speculated that prehistoric human populations—some perhaps relatively fresh out of Africa—were ravaged by the volcano's environmental fallout as far away from Indonesia as modern-day India.

That ancient toll may come in to sharper focus as a result of the new ice core data, coupled with ash readings from closer to the long-gone volcano. By correlating the various dating findings, the team says, they'll be able to better estimate when the eruption occurred, which should in turn allow archaeologists to better gauge whether artifacts date from pre- or post-Toba times.

Whenever Toba exploded, it's unlikely we'll see such a mega-eruption any time soon. "It's a very low risk," Svensson reassured.

The new Toba-volcano study was published online by the journal Climate of the Past on Monday [Nov 5th, 2012 ].

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