Homo neanderthalensis (Swanscombe 1) cranium
Neanderthal fossils are known from the southerly regions of western Eurasia in both glacial and interglacial periods, while mtDNA data suggest they expanded as far as Siberia at times.
They ranged from temperate woodland to steppe-tundra environments.
Population numbers are believed to have been low, particularly in glacial stages, mtDNA studies suggest an effective population size in later Neanderthals of less than 3000 females.
From skeletal isotope data, the Neanderthals were top-level carnivores, preying on large mammals.