HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Soil suggests early humans lived in forests instead of grasslands

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. Carbon isotope evidence in almost 6-million-year-old soils suggests that the earliest humans already were evolving in and likely preferred humid forests rather than grasslands, report a team of scientists working in Ethiopia.

The discovery challenges long-held beliefs, beginning with Darwin, that humans did not evolve into upright beings and thrive until expanding tropical grasslands forced our chimpanzee-like ancestors out of dwindling forests about 4 million to 8 million years ago.

Hominid fossil sites from the later Pliocene period (2.5 million to 4.2 million years ago) previously had been found in savanna habitats. Researchers had been confident that the slightly earlier hominids living in the late Miocene also would be found in the savanna.

The expectation was that we would find hominids in savanna grassland sites that date back to about 8 million years ago. That hasnt happened, said anthropologist Stanley H. Ambrose of the University of Illinois. All older hominids have been found in forested environments.

The analysis was of fossil soils from paleontological sites in the Middle Awash region of Ethiopias rift valley, where the remains of a new subspecies of Ardipithecus ramidus have been discovered. They date to the late Miocene period (5.4 million to 5.8 million years ago). Scientists from four institutions report their findings in a pair of papers that appear in the July 12 issue of the journal Nature.

Ambrose collected fossil soil samples from the layers containing the newly found hominids. One of the fossils was found by team member Leslea Hlusko, also a UI professor of anthropology. Ambrose performed geochemical studies on the samples in his UI laboratory.

The region where the fossils were found is now a hot, dry semi-desert occupied by nomadic camel herders. At the time the area formed, it was higher in elevation, cooler, wetter and more forested.

Ambroses geochemical technique allows for a
'"/>

Contact: Jim Barlow, Life Sciences Editor
b-james3@uiuc.edu
217-333-5802
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
11-Jul-2001


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. Research suggests new avenue for stopping, preventing colon cancer
2. New sign language suggests children create languages fundamentals through learning
3. New research suggests early diet may play key role in protecting against childhood leukaemia
4. New research suggests link between maternal diet and childhood leukemia risk
5. Research suggests unborn children may be at risk from environmental pollution
6. Study suggests cell-cycle triggers might be cancer drug targets
7. Computer imaging of Archeopteryx skull suggests this dinosaur-bird link could fly
8. Study suggests humans can speed evolution
9. Droughts like 1930s Dust Bowl may have been unexceptional in prehistoric times, new study suggests
10. Genetic model for devastating form of paraplegia suggests new treatments
11. New research suggests previously unrecognized mechanism by which blood vessels are patterned

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
TAG: Soil suggests early humans lived forests instead grasslands

(Date:2/5/2015)... SAN DIEGO , Jan. 26, 2015   Epic ... treatment of cancer, today announced that Murali Prahalad , ... Personalized Medicine World Conference (PMWC) 2015: Silicon Valley, ... Mountain View, Calif. on January 26-28, ... entitled, "CTCs Come of Age as Biomarkers." Last year, Epic ...
(Date:2/5/2015)... 28, 2015 Research and Markets ... the "Global Biometrics Market (2014-2020): Market Forecast ... report to their offering. , ... is anticipated to overtake ... increasing government spending towards IT security, government biometric ...
(Date:1/22/2015)... /PRNewswire/ - Today, FindBiometrics, the leading source of biometrics industry news, ... website design. "When we launched FindBiometrics 12 years ... O,Neill , founder and CEO of FindBiometrics. "Now it,s maturing ... the key players on a very broad scale.  We are ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):Epic Sciences to Present at Personalized Medicine World Conference 2015 on the Use of Circulating Tumor Cells as Cancer Biomarkers 2Global Biometrics Market (2014-2020): Market Forecast By Technologies, Applications, End Use, Regions and Countries 2Global Biometrics Market (2014-2020): Market Forecast By Technologies, Applications, End Use, Regions and Countries 3Identity Industry Leading Publication Debuts New Look As Biometrics Hit Mainstream 2
(Date:2/27/2015)... 2015  Steep Hill, the industry leader in cannabis ... to open a full service medical cannabis quality assurance ... bringing advanced scientific tools and methodology to the state, ... is currently the only laboratory licensed by the New ... testing in order to meet the recently adopted regulatory ...
(Date:2/26/2015)... Feb. 26, 2015 /PRNewswire/ - SQI Diagnostics Inc. ("SQI" ... sciences company that develops and commercializes proprietary technologies and ... and operational results for the fiscal first quarter ended ... are in Canadian dollars (CAD), unless otherwise stated. ... win new business from our existing customers and add ...
(Date:2/26/2015)... February 26, 2015 The Movement for ... to support life extension technologies and awareness. The event ... Coordinated Time, on March 21st 2015, in a live ... , Eric Schulke, Founder of MILE, says, “Our lives ... urgency. The Movement for Indefinite Life Extension is raising ...
(Date:2/26/2015)... 2015 The Pittcon 2015 Exposition, ... Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans, ... February 19, 2015) displaying products and services used ... government labs. The Exposition will offer the latest ... to, analytical chemistry; drug discovery; nanotechnology; life sciences ...
Breaking Biology Technology:Steep Hill First to Receive Provisional Approval to Establish Laboratory Services for Cannabis Testing in State of New Mexico 2SQI Diagnostics Reports First Quarter Financial Results 2SQI Diagnostics Reports First Quarter Financial Results 3SQI Diagnostics Reports First Quarter Financial Results 4SQI Diagnostics Reports First Quarter Financial Results 5SQI Diagnostics Reports First Quarter Financial Results 6Indefinite Life Extension Activists Organize Online Demonstration 2Indefinite Life Extension Activists Organize Online Demonstration 3Pittcon 2015 Announces Exposition Highlights 2
Cached News: