ANT - L06 [Oct 21 2010]

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15 Feb 2011
School
Department
Course
L06 ± Oct 21
Overview
x General patterns of morphology for some key fossil hominins
x Main hypotheses on human origins
x Evolutionary anthropology and human race concepts
x Basics of medical anthropology
x Forensic anthropology and how it relates to applied anthropology
Some Key Australopithecines7KH)LUVW³5HDO´+RPLQLQV
x Australopithecus anamensis
x Australopithecus afarensis
x Australopithecus africanus
x Australopithecus aethipicus
x Australopithecus boisei
x Australopithecus robustus
Australopithecus anamensis
x Kanapoi, Kenya
x 4.2 ± 3.9 MYA
x Tooth row is parallel (ape-like)
x Partial tibia provides strong evidence for bipedality
o Hind limbs as main source of locomotion
x Primitive (ape-like) cranial morphology and a derived (human-like) postcranial
morphology
o From the head-up it looks like an ape
o From the neck-down it looks more like a human
Australopithecus afarensis
x Ethiopia (Hadar, Omo, and Fejej) and Tanzania (Laetoli)
x 4.2 ± 3.0 MYA
x Many specimens
x Complex morphology exhibiting some ape-like traits (e.g., sagittal crests ± crests
on the top and back of the skull that serve as anchor points for the chewing
muscles) and hominin-like traits (e.g., valgus knee)
x Naturally hooked fingers
x Transitional animal ± equal time on ground and in trees
x Single, sexually dimorphic species or two species?
x Laetoli Footprints
o 3.6 MYA in Laetoli, Tanzania
o Demonstrate that early hominins were bipedal
o Big toes hardly diverged from the rest of foot, unlike in chimpanzees
Big toe in same location as humans
o *DLWZDV³KHHO-VWULNH´IROORZHGE\³WRH-RI the way modern humans
walk
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Australopithecus africanus
x Various sites in South Africa
x 3.0 ± 2.3 MYA
x Average brain size is 458 cc. (slightly bigger than A. afarensis)
x Dental features differ from those in A. afarensis
x Postcranial features similar to those in A. afarensis
x Bipedalism similar to that of A. afarensis
x Almost no sexual dimorphism
Australopithecus aethiopicus
x West Turkana, Kenya
x 2.7 ± 2.3 MYA
x Large face, huge zygomatics, large skull crests, and enormous teeth
o Tiny brain size
x Remarkably primitive hominin at such a late date
x Has a skull that looks more like a gorilla skull than human skull
o Scientists think it looks like an Australopithecus but looks more primitive
than derived
Australopithecus boisei
x Olduvai, Tanzania
x 2.2 ± 1.2 MYA
x ³+\SHU-UREXVW´KRPinin
x Morphology broadly similar to that seen in A. aethipoicus
Australopithecus robustus
x Swartkrans and Kromdraai, South Africa
x 2 ± 1 MYA
x Another robust form
x Small anterior teeth and large posterior teeth, which are covered in thick enamel
Gracile and Robust Forms?
x Gracile Australopithecines
o Australopithecus afarensis
o Australopithecus africanus
x Robust Australopithecines (smaller brains, more robust size)
o Australopithecus boisei
o Australopithecus robustus
o Australopithecus aethiopicus
Rise of the genus Homo
x Earliest evolved in Africa
x Most date 2.4 ± 1.8 MYA
x First fossil member of taxon: Homo habilisZKLFKPHDQV³KDQG\PDQ´
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x Some researchers suggest that H. habilis LV³MXQNWD[RQ´DQGWKDWWKHUHPD\EH
two or more species of Homo by 2.0 MYA
Homo habilis
x From sites in Tanzania, Kenya and Ethiopia (2.3 ± 1.6 MYA)
x Species designation: brain size and association with stone tools
x Skeletal morphology similar to contemporaneous australopithecines
x First species of Homo or junk taxon?
x May represent 2 or more different species (H. rudolfensis & H. habilis)
Homo rudolfensis
x Koobi Fora, Kenya
x Originally considered H. habilis
x H. rudolfensis or H. habilis first representatives of our genus?
x Very controversial
Homo erectus
x First species in genus Homo found outside Africa (Asia and Southeast Asia)
x 1.8 MYA ± 27 KYA
x Brain and body size changes in lineage
x Controlled use of fire and hunting
x Early African specimens may be different species, Homo ergaster
Homo ergaster
x Earliest African specimens
x Turkana boy: adult height estimate, limb proportions, and predicted strength
x Debate on H. erectus or H. ergaster as direct ancestor of modern humans
Homo heidelbergensis
x Europe and Africa
x 700 ± 130 KYA
x Compared to H. erectus, H. heidelbergensis
o Decreased dentition
o Increased brain size
o Increased body size
Homo antecessor
x Spain
x 1.2 MYA ± 800 KYA
x Controversy surrounding species designation
x Type specimen is juvenile VRZHGRQ¶WNQRZDGXOWIRUP
x 1st hominin in Europe?
Homo neanderthalensis
x Europe and Middle East
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