New hominid discovered living alongside Lucy

29 Mar

The partial foot is the first evidence that at least two pre-human species with different modes of locomotion lived side by side in eastern Africa around 3.4 million years ago.

While the big toe of Australopithecus afarensis was aligned with the other four toes for human-like bipedal walking, the Burtele foot has an opposable big toe like the earlier Ardi.

“This discovery was quite shocking,” says Dr Bruce Latimer of Case Western Reserve University.

“These fossil elements represent bones we’ve never seen before. While the grasping big toe could move from side to side, there was no expansion on top of the joint that would allow for expanded range of movement required for pushing off the ground for upright walking. This individual would have likely had a somewhat awkward gait when on the ground.”

The fossils were found below a sandstone layer, and dated using the argon-argon radioactive method.

Super-earth-gliese-667-cc-sunset

“Nearby fossils of fish, crocodiles and turtles, and physical and chemical characteristics of sediments show the environment was a mosaic of river and delta channels adjacent to an open woodland of trees and bushes,” says Dr Beverly Saylor of Case Western Reserve University.

“This fits with the fossil, which strongly indicates a hominin adapted to living in trees, at the same time ‘Lucy’ was living on land.”

visit jettab.com for the new JETTAB 2.0 Android tablet

http://www.tgdaily.com/general-sciences-features/62392-new-hominid-discovered…

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: