Were humans almost wiped out around 72,000 years ago?
The hypothesis that the Toba eruption about 75,000 years ago caused the world human population to decrease to about 1000 is generally considered to be false.
- Ash from the Toba supereruption in Lake Malawi shows no volcanic winter in East Africa at 75 ka. Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, 2013.
- Alive! Mammals survived Toba's super-volcanic winter. New Scientist, 2013.
- What is a Population Bottleneck? at DNAeXplained - Genetic Genealogy, 2015. Explains that not only did Homo sapiens survive, but so did H. sapiens neanderthalensis and H. sapiens Denisova also survive and their genes appear in humans outside of Africa.
There is no doubt that the Toba eruption caused many human and animal deaths in Sumatra, and it may have ended some species, but most species including humans in Africa, Europe, and Asia survived just fine.