Fossil skull of Mrs. Ples, Australopithecus africanus

Fossil skull of Mrs. Ples, Australopithecus africanus

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Credit: PATRICK LANDMANN/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Fossil skull of Australopithecus africanus, an extinct hominid species which may be an ancestor of modern humans. Affectionately known as Mrs. Ples, this fossil was found by Robert Broom in the limestone caves at Sterkfontein, South Africa in 1936. Broom called this skull Plesianthropus transvaalensis. A. africanus lived from 3.3 to 2.1 million years ago throughout much of Africa.

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