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“It’s a much more complex picture of the evolution of our species, with parts of the human anatomy evolving at different rates,” he explained.
The shape of the brain, therefore, may have changed during the more recent evolution of modern humans, becoming more globe-shaped and undergoing changes in the proportions.
In one, scientists document the morphological features of the fossils, showing how this early version of a human would have looked remarkably like what we do today.
They have a variety of features—while their cranium appears archaic, belonging to an earlier ancestor, their facial features are remarkably close to modern-day humans.
Because of these features, the team say the site “documents early stages of the Homo sapiens clade in which key features of modern morphology were established.”In total, the researchers located remains of five individuals—one of them a child.
The authors say these early Homo sapiens had potentially moved north across Africa—when the savanna was greener—following gazelle.
Because the stone tools date from the same period as the fossils, researchers say these early humans had brought their hunting technology with them.
The other paper focuses on the dating of the site, with scientists using new techniques to establish how old the tools and remains were.