Communities

Writing
Writing
Codidact Meta
Codidact Meta
The Great Outdoors
The Great Outdoors
Photography & Video
Photography & Video
Scientific Speculation
Scientific Speculation
Cooking
Cooking
Electrical Engineering
Electrical Engineering
Judaism
Judaism
Languages & Linguistics
Languages & Linguistics
Software Development
Software Development
Mathematics
Mathematics
Christianity
Christianity
Code Golf
Code Golf
Music
Music
Physics
Physics
Linux Systems
Linux Systems
Power Users
Power Users
Tabletop RPGs
Tabletop RPGs
tag:snake search within a tag
answers:0 unanswered questions
user:xxxx search by author id
score:0.5 posts with 0.5+ score
"snake oil" exact phrase
votes:4 posts with 4+ votes
created:<1w created < 1 week ago
post_type:xxxx type of post
Search help
Notifications
Mark all as read
Q&A

What species will benefit most from humanity's having been here?

+0
−0

Assuming that as a species, we do ourselves in, not through war but through environmental neglect and overpopulation, what species will benefit most from the effect we have had on the planet during our brief time at the top of the food chain?

I am writing a short story about an alien world where the inhabitants hold a predecessor species in high respect for all the treasures left behind before they disappeared long before the current sentient age. At the end of the story, I want the reveal to be that the planet is Earth and humanity is the predecessor species whose garbage and relics have helped the current race thrive.

I've considered rats because they already thrive on what we discard, and dogs because I would love to see a more noble species take the throne after us. But I am sure that there are other candidate species which might lead the story into wonderful new realms.

My criteria for "benefits most" is based on how much what we would leave behind might shorten the species's evolutionary journey to sentience.

Why does this post require moderator attention?
You might want to add some details to your flag.
Why should this post be closed?

This post was sourced from https://worldbuilding.stackexchange.com/q/176599. It is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

0 comment threads

1 answer

+0
−0

On thinking about the other answers, I'm not sure this is possible without a little "something extra"... If humans suddenly die out, nature is likely going to reclaim most of our stuff more quickly than something else can grow to the point of being able to care about it consciously and preserve it.

That "something" is uplift.

There are several species that would make good candidates, but really, you could use whatever suits your fancy. The upshot is that humans are revered not just because of all the stuff we left behind, but because we are responsible for your species' sapience, and they know it.

This might work better if full sapience arises only slightly after we're gone, or if we don't realize it's happened. To that extent, your best candidates are probably dogs (for obvious reasons) or possibly horses (similar reasons as dogs), or else laboratory animals (either monkeys or, ahem, rats).

If you're interested in the notion, I would strongly recommend reading Breed to Come by Andre Norton. You might also find That Which Survives interesting. (Go read it now; it's free and it's not much longer than this answer. Thank you FuzzyBoots for dredging that up for me!)

Why does this post require moderator attention?
You might want to add some details to your flag.

0 comment threads

Sign up to answer this question »