Jan Bartek – AncientPages.com – A few years ago, at the Voranso-Mil paleontological site in northern Ethiopia, scientists discovered a 3.8-million-year-old skull belonging to a primitive hominin known as Australopithecus anamensis.
Previously known mainly from jaws and teeth, researchers were excited to get their hands on a fossilized hominin cranium that was in excellent condition and nearly complete. 1
Australopithecus anamensis is one of the earliest known species closely related to modern humans, and the ancient history of hominins may shed new light on human evolution.
The Voranso-Mill skull of Australopithecus anamensis, whose specimens have been dated to 4.2–3.9 million years ago. Photo by Dale Omori / Courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History
Scientists have established “Australopithecus anamensis individuals possessed roughly built, long, narrow jaws with lateral rows of teeth arranged in parallel lines. Their strong jaws coupled with heavily enameled teeth suggest Au. anamensis individuals May at times have eaten hard, abrasive foods, but they were normally plant-eaters, subsisting on both fruit and hard foods such as nuts. Sites where remains of Au anamensis have been found were forests and woodlands that surround lakes. used to grow around. 2
Using digital technology, experts have reconstructed the face of our long distant cousin.
“What does this sample first give us a glimpse of Australopithecus anamensis In fact looked like,” Yohannes Haile-Selassie, head of physical anthropology at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History, said in a conference call Tuesday. IFL Science Report.[It shows] Early human ancestors were too ‘primitive’ to the genus Homosexual arrived,” he said. “They still have an ape-like face and ape-like cranial morphology.” Australopithecus means in Latin: “southern ape”.
The Voranso-Mil skull belonged to a bipedal male hominin who lived in a mixed environment, moving from dry scrub to forest along river and wetlands. Given its small brain, early hominin species were resourceful. Australopithecus anamensis was present in southern, eastern and north-central Africa, before going extinct about 2 million years ago.
As reported by IFL Science, “the Australopithecus species played an important role in human evolution with the genus Homosexual (for example, homo sapiens) emerging from Australopithecus sometime after 3 million years ago.
The facial reconstruction of An Anamnesis by John Gurche was made possible through contributions by Susan and George Klein. Photo by Matt Crowe courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
Our understanding of this new skull is now challenging many previously held beliefs about this mysterious ancestor. One of the best-known members of this genus is Australopithecus afarensis, represented by the famous “Lucy” fossil. Contrary to previous research, this skull suggests that a history And A. afarensis In fact they were quite different in appearance.
Facial reconstruction by John Gurche made possible through contributions by Susan and George Klein. Photo by Matt Crowe courtesy of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History.
it was once thought a history paved the way for A. afarensis In an evolved lineage. However, the dating of this specimen suggests that the two species overlapped for at least 100,000 years. Like most chapters in the story of human evolution, the Path is not a straight linear line. Instead, as this skull further highlights, it’s really a criss-cross of paths with overlaps and dead-ends.
“This cranium is poised to become another well-known symbol of human evolution,” writes Fred Spoor, a professor of human evolutionary anatomy at UCL in the UK, who was not directly involved in this study. 3
“Its discovery will substantially influence our thinking on the origin of the genus Australopithecus Specifically, and more broadly on the evolutionary family tree of early hominins,” he added.
Using digital technology to access and retrieve visual information from extinct hominin species could help scientists piece together the story of human evolution.
written by Jan Bartek – AncientPages.com staff Writer
expand to references
- Sellar, B.Z., Gibert, L., Deano, A. (2010). and others. The age and context of a mid-Pliocene hominin cranium from Voranso-Mil, Ethiopia. nature 573, 220–224 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-019-1514-7
- Australopithecus anamensis – Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
- Fred Spoor – The elusive skull of an early hominin found, Nature 573, 200–202 (2019), doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-019-02520-9