Hominids

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Were the Hobbits’ Ancestors Sailors?

The forefathers of Homo floresiensis reached Flores either by sailing to the island or being accidently washed out to sea by a tsunami, scientists say

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Spend Your Fourth of July Hominid Hunting

Celebrate Independence Day with a trip to one of America's many archaeological parks

The dental plaque on Australopithecus sediba teeth reveals the species ate wood or bark.

Australopithecus Sediba: The Wood-Eating Hominid

For the first time, researchers have discovered that a hominid dined on wood or bark

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The Paradox of the Nutcracker Man

Researchers have assumed Paranthropus boisei used its giant teeth to crack open nuts, but conflicting evidence suggests the hominid ate more like a cow

Hamadryas baboons live in complex, multilevel societies. A pair of anthropologists say Homo erectus did, too.

Why Homo erectus Lived Like a Baboon

A harsh environment might have led Homo erectus to evolve complex societies similar to those of desert-dwelling hamadryas baboons

An analysis of virus fossils suggests Denisovans, not humans, were Neanderthals' closest relatives.

Virus “Fossils” Reveal Neanderthals’ Kin

Genetic remnants of an ancient infection indicate the mysterious Denisovans, not humans, are Neanderthals' closest cousins

Mary and Louis Leakey

Louis Leakey: The Father of Hominid Hunting

Louis Leakey popularized the study of human evolution and sparked the search for human ancestors in Africa

Pigs were domesticated in several different regions of the world.

Old McHominid’s Farm

Where and when did humans domesticate dogs, pigs, cows and other animals?

Some fossil evidence indicates the common ancestor of gorillas (shown), chimpanzees and humans came from Europe.

Did Africa’s Apes Come From Europe?

Fossil evidence hints that the common ancestor of gorillas, chimpanzees and humans evolved in Europe

An artist's depiction of Afrotarsius (upper left) and other early primates from Africa

Out of Asia: How Monkey and Ape Ancestors Colonized Africa

A new fossil discovery suggests that anthropoid ancestors originated in Asia and then rafted across the ocean to Africa

Sometimes sleeping on the ground is cooler and more comfortable for chimpanzees.

Chimpanzees Sleep in Trees to Escape the Humidity

Making nests in trees keeps chimps comfortable and safe from nighttime predators

The entrance to Shanidar Cave in northern Iraq

Human Evolution Discoveries in Iraq

Fossils from the Shanidar Cave provide insights on health, violence and death rituals among Neanderthals

This skull from the Petralona Cave is one of the few hominid fossils found in Greece that date to the Middle Pleistocene.

Where Are Greece’s Missing Hominids?

Given its location and climate, Greece should be filled with hominid bones and stone tools

Someone painted this rhinoceros on a wall in France's Chauvet Cave about 30,000 years ago.

The Top Four Candidates for Europe’s Oldest Work of Art

The discovery of 37,000-year-old cave art showing female genitalia adds to the list of contenders

Adult male orangutans have large cheek pads and a big throat pouch, but it can take decades to develop such traits.

Why Some Orangutans Never Want to Grow Up

Some males take decades to fully mature; this arrested development can improve their odds of mating success

A grandmother in Ethiopia carries her grandchild.

Grandmothers Reduce Incidence of Breast Cancer?

By helping raise their grandchildren, grandmothers might have influenced the spread of certain genes, a new study suggests

The soft spot and metopic suture are clearly visible on the skull of the young human (right) and absent in the young chimpanzee (left). Those features are present, although harder to see, in the fossil of a young Australopithecus (center).

Why Do Babies Have Soft Spots?

Humans' big, fast-growing brains and unique style of walking explain why it takes so long for infant skulls to develop

Modern humans may have used art to maintain ties between social groups. Traveling between distant social groups may have led to better spatial reasoning, a new study suggests.

Superior Navigation Secret to Humans’ Success?

Greater spatial intelligence may have given modern humans an edge over Neanderthals, a new study proposes

What's going on in this guy's head? Read How to Think Like a Neanderthal to find out.

A Human Evolution Summer Reading List

As you plan for summer vacation, don't forget to pack one of these reads on Neanderthals, human origins, new fossils or the first people in the New World

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Meat Helps Human Populations Grow

A new study links eating meat to shorter periods of nursing, allowing women to bear more children