“Lucy, you got some ‘splainin’ to do.”
2. Even if true, this isn't all that surprising. While we're all familiar with the simple linear evolutionary projections we see in elementary school textbooks, the fossil record is much more complex, filled with branches, dead ends, hybridization and other weird stuff. It's often hard to figure out the exact evolutionary path from a series of specimens.
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Footprints to Fill:The case for A. afarensis as the Laetoli trailblazer hinges on the fact that fossils of the species are known from the site and that the only available reconstruction of what this hominid's foot looked like is compatible with the morphology evident in the footprints. But in a presentation given at the American Association of Physical Anthropologists meeting in April, William E. H. Harcourt-Smith of the American Museum of Natural History and Charles E. Hilton of Western Michigan University took issue with the latter assertion.
Flat feet and doubts about
makers of the Laetoli tracks
by Kate Wong
August 1, 2005
The prints show that whoever made them had a humanlike foot arch, and the reconstructed A. afarensis foot exhibits just such an arch. So far, so good. The problem, Harcourt-Smith and Hilton say, is that the reconstruction is actually based on a patchwork of bones from 3.2-million-year-old afarensis and 1.8-million-year-old Homo habilis. And one of the bones used to determine whether the foot was in fact arched--the so-called navicular--is from H. habilis, not A. afarensis.
Without the Israelis knowing all the Dems, how can they be so certain she wasn’t some folks ancestor?
If my memory does not fail me, I visited the Chicago Museum of Natural History several years ago and Lucy was prominently presented in the display on human evolution.
I wonder how long it will take them to leave the display there before changing it after this new evidence presented.
Richard Leaky himself, one of the world’s most prominent paleo-anthropologist recognizes a problem with Lucy in a PBS Documentary almost 20 years ago. Quoting him :
If pressed about mans ancestry, I would have to unequivocally say that all we have is a huge question mark. To date, there has been nothing found to truthfully purport as a transitional species to man, including Lucy, since 1470 was as old and probably older. If further pressed, I would have to state that there is more evidence to suggest an abrupt arrival of man rather than a gradual process of evolving.