Neanderthals were as keen as finishing as modern humans, according to a new study.

Bizarre on Female First

Bizarre on Female First

Research has revealed that Neanderthal communities living in Portugal consumed a diet including fish, molluscs and crustaceans, indicating that their behaviour is closer to Homo sapiens than previously thought.

It is suggested that the findings could help explain the ''emergence of cognitive and behavioural modernity'' in ancient people, with seafood known to boost brain development.

The excavation at the cave of Figueira Brava near Setubal in Portugal revealed the waste dumps dated to around 86,000 and 106,000 years ago and were packed with bones and shells from marine animals.

The researchers write: ''Figueira Brava provides the first record of significant marine resource consumption among Europe's Neanderthals.

''Consistent with rapidly accumulating evidence that Neanderthals possessed a fully symbolic material culture, the substance evidence reported here further questions the behavioural gap once thought to separate them from modern humans.''