Fragment of jawbone of A. afarensis from Lothagam

Fragment of jawbone of A. afarensis from Lothagam

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Credit: JOHN READER/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Lothagam jawbone. Fragment of the mandible (jaw- bone) with tooth of the fossil hominid Australo- pithecus afarensis found at Lothagam, Kenya. This bone fragment is said to be 5 million years old & thus the oldest Australopithecus remains known. A.afarensis is the earliest Australopithecus species known and perhaps the oldest ancestor of modern man. The teeth included relatively large incisors and canines with a gap between upper incisors and canines; the molars were of moderate size. Light of build, A.afarensis weighed 30-70 kg and stood upright 1-1.5 metres tall. Arms were long relative to the legs. These hominids ranged across Eastern Africa 5 to 2.5 million years ago.

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Keywords: anthropology, australopithecus afarensis, fossil, fossil man, hominid, hominid jawbone, hominids, hominin, jawbone, lothagam, palaeoanthropology, palaeontology, paleoanthropology, paleontology

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