Meave leakey fossil million years dating

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The lower jaw is shown as a photographic reconstruction, and the cranium is based on a computed tomography scan.

© Photo by Fred Spoor fossils all belong to a single lineage.

Based on the fossil evidence, paleoarchaeologists currently tell the following story: For 99.9 percent of our history, from the time of the first living cell, the human ancestral line was the same as that of chimpanzees.

Then, about 5–7 million years ago, a new line split off from the chimpanzee line, and a new group appeared in open savanna rather than in rainforest jungle.

These bones and skulls range from 25,000 to 4.4 million years old and show many different stages of human and primate evolution.

These fossils have been uncovered by paleoarchaeologists — scientists who study the material remains of the entire human evolutionary line.

Paleontologists and mother-daughter team Meave and Louise Leakey have made significant contributions to our understanding of human origins, continuing the legacy begun in 1931 by Louis S. Leakey with his discoveries of ancient fossils in Tanzania's Olduvai Gorge.

Over the years the Leakey family members—Louis, Mary, Richard, Meave, and Louise—have received numerous National Geographic research grants.

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She was also the head of the National Museums’ Division of Paleontology from 1982 to 2001.

In a paper published in the August 9 Meave Leakey of the Turkana Basin Institute in Nairobi, Fred Spoor of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig and their colleagues report that the new face mirrors 1470’s face shape, although it is smaller overall.

Inferring 1470’s upper jaw anatomy from the new face, the authors say the lower jaw fossils they found are good matches for the upper jaws of 1470 and the new face.

This launched her long-term work on the Turkana Basin research project.

Meave has worked at the National Museums of Kenya since 1969 and was head of the division of paleontology from 1982 to 2001.

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