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Latest African archaeology Stories

CT Study Of Early Humans Reveals Evolutionary Relationships
2011-09-20 04:42:09

  CT scans of fossil skull fragments may help researchers settle a long-standing debate about the evolution of Africa's Australopithecus, a key ancestor of modern humans that died out some 1.4 million years ago. The study, to be published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, explains how CT scans shed new light on a classic evolutionary puzzle by providing crucial information about the internal anatomy of the face. For decades scientists have disagreed about the...

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2011-06-02 05:40:00

An analysis of two ancient hominid species that roamed southern Africa more than a million years ago suggests that females left their childhood homes while males stayed at home, an international team of researchers said on Wednesday. The scientists studied teeth from a group of extinct Australopithecus africanus and Paranthropus robustus individuals from two adjacent cave systems, and found that more than half of the female teeth were from outside the local area. By comparison, just 10...

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2011-05-03 06:00:00

New research finds that the ancient pre-human known as "Nutcracker Man" did not dine on nuts after all, but instead dined on large quantities of grasses and sedges -- a discovery that upsets conventional wisdom about the diet of early humans. "It most likely was eating grass, and most definitely was not cracking nuts," said University of Utah geochemist Thure Cerling, lead author of the study. The "Nutcracker Man", or Paranthropus boisei, is an ancient human relative that roamed the African...

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2011-04-18 10:20:00

What was really on the menus of our ancestors? For human ancestors, eating could be hard work. "Our ancestors were large creatures. With very low quality foods, without cooked foods, it's very likely that they would have spent a great deal more of their day eating than we do," says Peter Ungar, distinguished professor and chairman of anthropology at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. Ungar's work, understanding ancient diets, is a combination of anthropology, biology, engineering,...

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2010-11-04 10:11:20

Was it the evolution of the hand, or of the brain, that enabled prehistoric toolmakers to make the leap from simple flakes of rock to a sophisticated hand axe? A new study finds that the ability to plan complex tasks was key. The research, published today in the Public Library of Science journal PLoS ONE, is the first to use a cyber data glove to precisely measure the hand movements of stone tool making, and compare the results to brain activation. "Making a hand axe appears to require...

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2010-06-22 09:29:22

The robust jaws and formidable teeth of some of our ancestors and ape cousins may suggest that humans are wimps when it comes to producing a powerful bite: but a new study has found the opposite is true, with major implications for our understanding of diet in ancestral humans. The surprise findings suggest that early modern humans did not necessarily need to use tools and cooking to process high-nutrient hard foods, such as nuts - and perhaps less tough foods such as meat - but may have lost...

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2010-04-08 10:40:00

Fossil find sheds light on the transition to Homo genus from earlier hominids Two partial skeletons unearthed from a cave in South Africa belong to a previously unclassified species of hominid that is now shedding new light on the evolution of our own species, Homo sapiens, researchers say. The newly documented species, called Australopithecus sediba, was an upright walker that shared many physical traits with the earliest known Homo species"”and its introduction into the fossil record...

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2009-02-13 09:49:53

Dazzling new scientific techniques are allowing archaeologists to track the movements and menus of extinct hominids through the seasons and years as they ate their way across the African landscape, helping to illuminate the evolution of human diets. Piecing together relationships between the diets of hominids several million years ago to that of early and modern humans is allowing scientists to see how diet relates to the evolution of cognitive abilities, social structures, locomotion and...

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2009-02-12 08:37:41

In an unusual intersection of materials science and anthropology, researchers from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and The George Washington University (GWU) have applied materials-science-based mathematical models to help shed light on the dietary habits of some of mankind's prehistoric relatives. Their work forms part of a newly published, multidisciplinary analysis* of the early hominid Australopithecus africanus by anthropologists at the State University of New...

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2009-02-04 12:15:00

The facial structure of an ancient relative of modern humans may have evolved to allow them to eat large, hard nuts and seeds as part of a survival strategy, according to a new study by an international team of researchers that includes Florida State University's Dennis E. Slice. The findings, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, challenge a long-standing hypothesis that the distinctive facial skeleton of Australopithecus africanus, a human relative who...


Latest African archaeology Reference Libraries

Australopithecus garhi
2013-11-29 11:38:51

Australopithecus garhi is a gracile australopithecine species whose fossils were discovered in 1996 by a research team led by Ethiopian paleontologist Berhane Asfaw ad Tim White, an American paleontologist. The remains are believed to be a human ancestor species and most likely the direct ancestor to the human genus Homo. Tim White was the scientist to find the first of the key A. garhi fossils in 1996 within the Bouri Formation found in the Middle Awash of Ethiopia’s Afar Depression....

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Word of the Day
snash
  • To talk saucily.
  • Insolent, opprobrious language; impertinent abuse.
This word is Scots in origin and probably imitative.