Friday, April 9, 2010

New Ancient Hominid Found?

Researchers believe a new hominid - human-like ancestor - has been discovered. The bones of what appear to be an adult female and juvenile male, possibly mother and son, were found in South Africa, not far from Johannesburg. The remains are around 2 million years old, and appear to have died at the same time, or soon after one another. The hominid has been named Australopithecus sediba. "Sediba" is Sesotho, the language spoken in South Africa, for "fountain"

Some believe they are the remains of a previously unknown hominid, representing the bridge between "an ape that walks on two legs to, effectively, us." Others disagree; the precise placement of the A. sediba remains in man's history is proving controversial. The hominid reportedly has a mixture of ancient and modern features, such as smaller teeth and an advanced pelvis, but long arms and a small brain.

Experts say the remains were found on top of others, none of which appear to have been scavenged, suggesting they died, and were entombed, quickly.

© C Harris Lynn, 2010

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