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Latest Prehistoric Africa Stories

2008-08-15 09:00:24

By John Noble Wilford New York Times News Service When Paul C. Sereno went hunting dinosaur bones in the Sahara, his career took a sharp turn from paleontology to archaeology. The expedition found what has proved to be the largest known graveyard of Stone Age people who lived there when the desert was green. The first traces of pottery, stone tools and human skeletons were discovered eight years ago at a site in the southern Sahara in Niger. After preliminary research, Sereno, a...

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2008-08-14 14:25:00

Researchers have uncovered the remains of a woman and two children in an ancient cemetery located in what is now the Sahara Desert. When they came across their skeletons, researchers found that the arms of the children were still extended to the woman in perpetual embrace in a cemetery that is providing an unprecedented view of how two civilizations lived there. Paul Sereno of the University of Chicago and his colleagues came across the skeletons while searching for the remains of dinosaurs...

2008-07-10 21:00:20

LOS ANGELES, July 10 /PRNewswire/ -- The screening of National Lampoon's "Homo Erectus" was so raucous last night, it looked like a scene cut straight from the film. The July 9th event was hosted by Ain't It Cool News, and shortly after filling the Hollywood Egyptian Theatre to capacity, threats of shutting down the screener rang from the upper echelons of management. Hollywood celebrities and attendees alike duked it out for the remaining seats. Luckily, amidst the caveman-like rioting,...

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2008-05-08 20:40:00

A recent study on the future of climate changes suggests that the once-green Sahara turned to desert over thousands of years rather than in an abrupt shift as previously believed. The study's lead author said that parts of the Sahara now show signs of a tiny shift back towards greener conditions, apparently due to global warming.The researchers looked at ancient pollen, spores and aquatic organisms in sediments in Lake Yoa in northern Chad that show that the region gradually shifted from...

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2008-04-24 16:50:00

An extensive genetic study released Thursday said that humans may have narrowly escaped extinction brought on by a drought some 70,000 years ago, after which the entire population was reduced to small isolated groups in Africa.  The report notes that a separate Stanford University study estimated the number may have dwindled to as low as 2,000 before expanding again in the early Stone Age. "This study illustrates the extraordinary power of genetics to reveal insights into some of the...

2008-03-24 01:56:49

A 6 million-year-old early relative of modern humans apparently walked on two feet, pushing back the origins of so-called bipedalism, according to a new study of a fossil found in Kenya. "I would say at this point it's the earliest fossil hominin that we can clearly identify as bipedal," said paleoanthropologist William Jungers of Stony Brook University, who conducted a quantitative analysis with Brian Richmond of George Washington University of a fossilized femur bone from the...

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2008-02-05 17:40:00

Did modern birds originate around the time of the dinosaurs' demise, or have they been around far longer? The question is at the center of a sometimes contentious "rocks versus clocks" debate between paleontologists, whose estimates are based on the fossil record, and scientists who use "molecular clock" methods to study evolutionary history. A new analysis by researchers at the University of Michigan, the University of Chicago, the Centre for Biodiversity Conservation Mexico and Central...

2007-08-12 12:19:32

By Khaled Kazziha Associated Press NAIROBI, Kenya -- One of the world's leading paleontologists denounced Ethiopia's decision to send the Lucy skeleton on a six- year tour of the United States, warning that the 3.2 million-year- old fossil will likely be damaged no matter how careful its handlers are. The skeleton was quietly flown out of Ethiopia last week for the U.S. tour. Paleontologist Richard Leakey joined other experts in criticizing what some see as a gamble with one of the...

2007-08-11 00:17:24

By LOS ANGELES TIMES A 11/2-million-year-old skull and an equally old jaw found in Kenya are helping rewrite the history of early man, eliminating one reputed ancestor from the human lineage and suggesting that another was much more primitive than previously believed, researchers said. The jawbone shows that Homo habilis, previously believed to be a direct ancestor of Homo erectus and thus of humans, lived side by side with H. erectus, making them sister species rather than mother and...

2007-08-09 18:03:03

Text of report by Kenyan KTN TV on 9 August Kenyan archaeologists today launched an unprecedented challenge on Charles Darwin's human evolution theory. An archaeologist Fredrick Manthi claims two fossils found around Lake Turkana indicate that man may not have evolved from an inferior human-like creature as suggested by the theory. Manthi, who has been studying the fossils for the last seven years, claims human species named homo habilis and homo erectus lived in the same location at the...


Latest Prehistoric Africa 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....

Homo sapiens
2013-09-24 13:55:52

Homo sapiens is the scientific name for the human species. Homo is the human genus, which also includes Neanderthals and various other extinct species of hominid. H. sapiens is the only surviving species of the genus Homo. Modern humans are the subspecies Homo sapiens sapiens, distinguished from their direct ancestor, Homo sapiens idaltu (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Homo_sapiens_idaltu). Subspecies of H. sapiens include Homo sapiens idaltu, roughly translated as “elder wise human” and...

Homo sapiens idaltu
2013-09-24 12:20:45

Homo sapiens idaltu is an extinct subspecies of Homo sapiens that lived nearly 160,000 years ago during the Pleistocene in Africa. “Idaltu” comes from the Saho-Afar word meaning “elder” or “first born”. The fossilized remains of H. s. idaltu were uncovered at Herto Bouri near the Middle Awash site of Ethiopia’s Afar Triangle in the year 1997 by Tim White, but were first revealed in 2003. Herto Bouri is a portion of Ethiopia under volcanic layers. By using radioisotope dating,...

Homo floresiensis
2013-09-16 13:06:40

Homo floresiensis Homo floresiensis, or Flores Man, nicknamed “hobbit” and “Flow”, is an extinct species in the genus Homo. The remains of an individual that would have stood about 3 feet in height were uncovered in 2003 on the island of Flores in Indonesia. Incomplete skeletons of nine individuals have been recovered, including one complete cranium. These remains have been the focus of intense research to establish whether they represent a species distinctive from modern humans....

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