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Journal of Human Evolution

William J Sanders
The early Pliocene site of Kanapoi (Turkana Basin, Kenya) has a large, diverse vertebrate sample that contains the earliest representatives of the hominin genus Australopithecus. Included in this sample is an impressive assemblage of fossil proboscideans, comprised of deinotheres (Deinotherium bozasi), anancine gomphotheres (Anancus ultimus), and at least three species of elephant (Loxodonta adaurora, a primitive morph of Loxodonta exoptata, and Elephas ekorensis). A single specimen from high in the sequence could plausibly belong to a primitive stage of Elephas recki...
February 8, 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Laurence Dumouchel, René Bobe
The Pliocene site of Kanapoi is key to our understanding of the environmental context of the earliest species of Australopithecus. Various approaches have been used to reconstruct the environments of this site, and here we contribute new data and analyses using mesowear and hypsodonty. The dental traits of 98 bovids, suids and rhinocerotids from Kanapoi were analyzed using these proxies. Results indicate that most of the animals analyzed had a relatively abrasive diet. Bovids in the assemblage incorporated more grass into their diet than do modern species of the same tribe or genus...
January 10, 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Rhonda L Quinn, Christopher J Lepre
Reconstructed habitats of Australopithecus anamensis at Kanapoi by Wynn (2000) yielded evidence for both wooded and grassy environments. Wynn's study was based on stable isotopic (δ13 CPC , δ18 OPC ) analyses of a small sample of pedogenic nodules (n = 14) collected from paleosols spanning Kanapoi's stratigraphic interval. Whether this small sample size adequately characterized Kanapoi's vegetation or was the result of time averaging remains unclear. To address this uncertainty, we sampled Kanapoi paleosols at 39 locations (78 analyses) from laterally extensive units...
January 6, 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
James B Rossie, Andrew Hill
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 27, 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
Paul E Morse, Stephen G B Chester, Doug M Boyer, Thierry Smith, Richard Smith, Paul Gigase, Jonathan I Bloch
Omomyiform primates are among the most basal fossil haplorhines, with the oldest classified in the genus Teilhardina and known contemporaneously from Asia, Europe, and North America during the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM) ∼56 mya. Characterization of morphology in this genus has been limited by small sample sizes and fragmentary fossils. A new dental sample (n = 163) of the North American species Teilhardina brandti from PETM strata of the Bighorn Basin, Wyoming, documents previously unknown morphology and variation, prompting the need for a systematic revision of the genus...
November 26, 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
René Bobe, Susana Carvalho
The newly described partial skeleton of Paranthropus boisei KNM-ER 47000 as well as the FwJj14E Ileret footprints provide new evidence on the paleobiology and diversity of hominins from the Okote Member of the Koobi Fora Formation at East Turkana about 1.5 Ma. To better understand the ecological context of the Okote hominins, it is necessary to broaden the geographical focus of the analysis to include the entire Omo-Turkana ecosystem, and the temporal focus to encompass the early Pleistocene. Previous work has shown that important changes in the regional vegetation occurred after 2 Ma, and that there was a peak in mammalian turnover and diversity close to 1...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Judit Marigó, Nicole Verrière, Marc Godinot
Twenty humeral specimens from the old and new Quercy collections attributed to the fossil primates Adapis and Palaeolemur are described and analysed together. We provide a qualitative and quantitative analysis of the different humeri, revealing that high variability is present within the "Adapis group" sample. Six different morphotypes are identified, confirming that what has often been called "Adapis parisiensis" is a mix of different species that present different locomotor adaptations...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Michael R Lague, Habiba Chirchir, David J Green, Emma Mbua, John W K Harris, David R Braun, Nicole L Griffin, Brian G Richmond
A ∼1.52 Ma adult upper limb skeleton of Paranthropus boisei (KNM-ER 47000) recovered from the Koobi Fora Formation, Kenya (FwJj14E, Area 1A) includes most of the distal half of a right humerus (designated KNM-ER 47000B). Natural transverse fractures through the diaphysis of KNM-ER 470000B provide unobstructed views of cortical bone at two sections typically used for analyzing cross-sectional properties of hominids (i.e., 35% and 50% of humerus length from the distal end). Here we assess cross-sectional properties of KNM-ER 47000B and two other P...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Joël Fagot, Louis-Jean Boë, Frederic Berthomier, Nicolas Claidière, Raphaelle Malassis, Adrien Meguerditchian, Arnaud Rey, Marie Montant
Comparative research on the origins of human language often focuses on a limited number of language-related cognitive functions or anatomical structures that are compared across species. The underlying assumption of this approach is that a single or a limited number of factors may crucially explain how language appeared in the human lineage. Another potentially fruitful approach is to consider human language as the result of a (unique) assemblage of multiple cognitive and anatomical components, some of which are present in other species...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Michael R Lague, Habiba Chirchir, David J Green, Emma Mbua, John W K Harris, David R Braun, Nicole L Griffin, Brian G Richmond
KNM-ER 47000 is a fossil hominin upper limb skeleton from the Koobi Fora Formation, Kenya (FwJj14E, Area 1A) that includes portions of the scapula, humerus, ulna, and hand. Dated to ∼1.52 Ma, the skeleton could potentially belong to one of multiple hominin species that have been documented in the Turkana Basin during this time, including Homo habilis, Homo erectus, and Paranthropus boisei. Although the skeleton lacks associated craniodental material, the partial humerus (described here) preserves anatomical regions (i...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Tyler R Bonnell, S Peter Henzi, Louise Barrett
In mobile social groups, cohesion is thought to be driven by patterns of attraction at both the individual and group level. In long-lived species with high group stability and repeated interactions, such as baboons, individual-to-individual attractions have the potential to play a large role in group cohesion and overall movement patterns. In previous work, we found that the patterning of inter-individual attraction gave rise to an emergent group-level structure, whereby a core of more influential, inter-dependent individuals exerted a unidirectional influence on the movements of peripheral animals...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Amélie Beaudet, Ronald J Clarke, Edwin J de Jager, Laurent Bruxelles, Kristian J Carlson, Robin Crompton, Frikkie de Beer, Jelle Dhaene, Jason L Heaton, Kudakwashe Jakata, Tea Jashashvili, Kathleen Kuman, Juliet McClymont, Travis R Pickering, Dominic Stratford
One of the most crucial debates in human paleoneurology concerns the timing and mode of the emergence of the derived cerebral features in the hominin fossil record. Given its exceptional degree of preservation and geological age (i.e., 3.67 Ma), StW 573 ('Little Foot') has the potential to shed new light on hominin brain evolution. Here we present the first detailed comparative description of the external neuroanatomy of StW 573. The endocast was virtually reconstructed and compared to ten southern African hominin specimens from Makapansgat, Malapa, Sterkfontein and Swartkrans attributed to Australopithecus and Paranthropus...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Rebecca Rogers Ackermann
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Kurt Hammerschmidt, Julia Fischer
A remarkable and derived trait of humans is the faculty for language, and considerable research effort has been devoted to understanding the evolution of speech. In contrast to spoken language, which constitutes a (learned) symbolic communication system, the acoustic structure of nonhuman primate vocalizations is largely genetically fixed. Yet, appreciable differences between different genera and species may exist. Environmental conditions, sexual selection, and characteristics of the social system have been invoked to explain these differences...
January 2019: Journal of Human Evolution
Mike Plavcan, David M Alba, Sarah Elton
No abstract text is available yet for this article.
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
Yana G Kamberov, Samantha M Guhan, Alessandra DeMarchis, Judy Jiang, Sara Sherwood Wright, Bruce A Morgan, Pardis C Sabeti, Clifford J Tabin, Daniel E Lieberman
Humans differ in many respects from other primates, but perhaps no derived human feature is more striking than our naked skin. Long purported to be adaptive, humans' unique external appearance is characterized by changes in both the patterning of hair follicles and eccrine sweat glands, producing decreased hair cover and increased sweat gland density. Despite the conspicuousness of these features and their potential evolutionary importance, there is a lack of clarity regarding how they evolved within the primate lineage...
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
Federica Dal Pesco, Julia Fischer
Ritualized greetings, defined as exchanges of non-aggressive signals, are common among males living in multi-male groups and are thought to balance the trade-offs of male co-residence. While ritualized greetings are widespread in the animal kingdom, the behavioral repertoire described in the genus Papio is exceptional, as it involves potentially harmful behaviors such as genital fondling. Although greetings are one of the most striking male social interactions in baboons, their function is still disputed. We investigated the function of male-male ritualized greeting behavior in wild Guinea baboons...
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
Francesco d'Errico, Luc Doyon, Shuangquan Zhang, Malvina Baumann, Martina Lázničková-Galetová, Xing Gao, Fuyou Chen, Yue Zhang
When, how, and following which paths hominins created the innovations that allowed them to colonize regions of the planet that were not suited to their thermal physiology is still a matter of inquiry. In this paper, we elaborate a theoretical framework to investigate the origin and diversification of bone needles, summarize the evidence for their emergence, create a large database of their morphometric and stylistic characters, and present results of the study of an exceptionally well-preserved collection of needles from Shuidonggou Locality 12 (SDG12), a site located in the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region, Northern China, dated to ca...
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
Shimona Kealy, Julien Louys, Sue O'Connor
Archaeological records from Australia provide the earliest, indirect evidence for maritime crossings by early modern humans, as the islands to the north-west of the continent (Wallacea) have never been connected to the mainland. Suggested in 1977 by Joseph B. Birdsell, the two main routes from Sunda (mainland Southeast Asia) to Sahul (Australia-New Guinea), still in debate today, are a northern route through Sulawesi with a landing in New Guinea, or a southern route through Bali, Timor and thence landing in northern Australia...
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
James B Rossie, Andrew Hill
A new species of the "small-bodied ape" Simiolus is described here that extends the temporal range of the genus to the end of the Middle Miocene. As such, it is one of the few species of fossil primates known from East Africa during a time of significant change in which Old World monkeys and crown hominoids replaced the primitive ape-like primates that had dominated the early Miocene. The dynamics of this important event in our evolutionary history are obscured by the small number of fossil primates known from Africa between 14 and 6 million years ago, as well as persistent ambiguity regarding the phylogenetic status of the ape-like Miocene primates...
December 2018: Journal of Human Evolution
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