Feeling old? There’s a reason for that

A newly discovered fossil has shaken up science?s view of human evolution and could be the missing link between apes and humans: 400,000 years older than the oldest human bone found, the discovery could entirely rewrite our story.

For decades scientists have been stumped on the gap between humans that walked bent over and those that walked upright. Who was the mysterious ancestor that joined the ape-like Australopithecus with the human-like Homo? We could be looking at an answer. It now appears the timeline for earliest upright humans goes back not to 2.3 ? but to 2.8 million years.

An Ethiopian student at Arizona State University and an accompanying research team discovered the lower jawbone and five teeth in Ethiopia in 2013. Now, for the first time, the findings have been published in two papers simultaneously, while a third supported the notion that this could indeed be a unique species, and not a Homo habilis.

The fragments definitely belong to the Homo lineage (of which we are the only remainder), but scientists are puzzled about what the species exactly is. In fact, it could turn out to be a completely new one.

I think this may go somewhat to explaining how we got to our current situation.

Michelle Boag

Michelle Boag

 

– RT

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