Numerous scientists question these theories and Holen and his team's conclusions concerning the mastodon remains.
“The presence of a Homo population in North America 130,000 years ago is a huge claim, and I can only remain extremely skeptical for the moment,” Bastien Llamas of the Australian Center for Ancient DNA (ACAD) told Seeker.
Alan Cooper conducted a genetic study with Llamas of the early peopling of the Americas and is the director of ACAD.
“Extraordinary claims such as this require extraordinary evidence,” he said, noting that he does not see such evidence in the new paper.
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Anthropologist David Meltzer of Southern Methodist University, a leading expert on the colonization of North America, echoed Cooper’s concerns.
“If you are going to push human antiquity in the New World back more than 100,000 years in one fell swoop, you’ll have to do so with a far better archaeological case than this one,” Meltzer said. “Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. We have none of the detailed taphonomic [fossil] evidence necessary to support such a grandiose and extraordinary claim.”