, Volume 26, Issue 3–4, pp 147–153 | Cite as

An allometric study of Macaca fascicularis from the Late Pleistocene deposits at the Ille site (Philippines): a possible model for Southeast Asian Dwarf Hominins

  • T. IngiccoEmail author
  • N. Amano
  • J. Ochoa
  • F. Détroit
Note / Note


Recent discoveries of taxonomically challenging Southeast Asian dwarf hominins from Liang Bua in Indonesia and the Callao Cave in the Philippines have enabled us to investigate the general tendency towards dwarfism or gigantism already observed in endemic insular animals. One current hypothesis suggests that the pygmy human phenotype is the result of evolutionary selection in rainforest environments. In this paper we test the hypothesis that dwarfism is a response to forest habitats, using macaque (Macaca fascicularis) fossils from the well-stratified archaeological sequence at the Ille site in the Philippines. Our results show that changes in size may affect general conformations in forested environments, and therefore support the hypothesis put forward on the evolution of pygmy hominin populations in tropical rainforest habitats.


Non-human primates Rainforest Insular and Environmental dwarfism Southeast Asian insularity Hominin evolution Elliptic Fourier 

Étude allométrique de Macaca fascicularis des dépôts du Pléistocène supérieur du site de Ille (Philippines) : un possible modèle pour les Homininés de petite taille du sud-est asiatique


Les récentes découvertes d’homininés de petite taille en Asie du Sud-est insulaire à Liang Bua (Indonésie) et Callao Cave (Philippines), dont la taxinomie est débattue, permettent de discuter de leur tendance au nanisme ou gigantisme par ailleurs déjà observé pour les faunes sujettes à l’endémisme insulaire. Une hypothèse actuelle propose que le phénotype pygmoïde soit le résultat d’une évolution en forêt tropicale. Nous cherchons ici à tester l’hypothèse du nanisme comme réponse à un habitat forestier, à partir de macaques (Macaca fascicularis) provenant des niveaux archéologiques stratifiés du site du site de Ille (Philippines). Nos résultats montrent que des changements de tailles peuvent avoir des conséquences sur la conformation générale dans le cadre d’un environnement forestier. Notre étude vient appuyer l’hypothèse de l’évolution du phénotype pygmoïde en forêt tropicale humide.

Mots clés

Primates non-humains Forêt tropicale humide Nanisme insulaire et environnemental Asie du Sud-Est insulaire Évolution humaine Fourier elliptique 


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Copyright information

© Société d'anthropologie de Paris et Springer-Verlag France 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Archaeological Studies ProgramUniversity of the Philippines Diliman, Albert HallQuezon CityPhilippines
  2. 2.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of the Philippines Diliman, Palma HallQuezon CityPhilippines
  3. 3.Département de Préhistoiredu Muséum national d’Histoire naturelle, UMR 7194, CNRSParisFrance

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