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New homininfossils from Malapa: The unveiling of Australopithecus sediba

South African Journal of Science, March 2010, Vol.106(3-4) [Peer Reviewed Journal]

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  • Title:
    New homininfossils from Malapa: The unveiling of Australopithecus sediba
  • Author: Morris, A.G.
  • Found In: South African Journal of Science, March 2010, Vol.106(3-4) [Peer Reviewed Journal]
  • Subjects: Teeth ; Palaeo Studies ; Caves ; Archaeology ; Skeleton ; Palaeontology ; Palaeontology
  • Rights: Copyright 2010 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.
  • Description: The odds of archaeologists finding a nearly complete skeleton went up dramatically when humans began to bury their dead in formal graves. But this began only about 50 000 years ago, a relatively recent date in terms of human origins and only a small portion of the four-million-year history of our ancestral line. Before formal burial, the physical remains of our ancestors were processed by the environment in the same way as any other dead animal: chewed up by scavengers, dispersed in a river bed, on the open veld or in a cave, and finally preserved by fossilisation as isolated bones. Nearly complete skeletons in the fossil record of our earliest ancestors are as rare as the proverbial 'hen's teeth'. The discovery of the hominins from Malapa announced by Lee Berger super(1) has been just such a rare occurrence.
  • Identifier: ISSN: 00382353 ; E-ISSN: 19967489 ; DOI: 10.4102/sajs.v106i3/4.209

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