Windsor Humanist Society

May 20, 2009

Missing Link Found? 47 Million-Year-Old Primate Fossil Revealed

Filed under: The Sciences — moderator @ 1:31 pm

Scientists announced on Tuesday in New York the discovery of a 47 million year old human ancestor. For the past two years, an international team of scientists, led by world-renowned Norwegian fossil scientist Dr Jørn Hurum, University of Oslo Natural History Museum, has secretly conducted a detailed forensic analysis of the extraordinary fossil, studying the data to decode humankind’s ancient origins. At 95% complete, Ida is set to revolutionize our understanding of human evolution.

Discovered in Messel Pit, Germany, the fossil is twenty times older than most fossils that explain human evolution. Known as ‘Ida’, the fossil is a transitional species showing characteristics from the very primitive non-human evolutionary line (prosimians, such as lemurs), but she is more related to the human evolutionary line (anthropoids, such as monkeys, apes and humans). This places Ida at the very root of anthropoid evolution – when primates were first developing the features that would evolve into our own.

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1 Comment »

  1. Before we start to extrapolate that humankind started in Europe and not Africa, we might also note that hominids (at least two kinds) left Africa and spread out over Europe and (sapiens) the world, so why couldn’t our most primitive ancestor have migrated from Europe to Africa to launch the homonids which filled Africa before Europe? This is interesting, but does not imply a big change in where we started, though I can anticipate that’s where this discussion could go.

    Comment by doctorhenrysteinberger — May 20, 2009 @ 4:35 pm | Reply


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