Researchers have found the oldest complete skeleton skull of a human ancestor -- a four-feet-tall ape-creature who died some 3.6 million years ago in South Africa (sa ). The skeleton was found in a cave near the capital Johannesburg.
Temporarily christened as Little Foot, the figure will be formally named as soon as palaeontolo-gists are sure of its sex. South African scientists, led by Ron Clarke, a British palaeontologist at the University of Witwatershed, sa , said the find could provide new clues on when the ape-like progenitors of humans first came down from the trees.
The specimen had heels adapted for standing upright, walked on two legs and used distended big toes to climb trees. Its life would have been 'similar to that which is led by chimpanzees today,' said Clarke.
The find will help understand the link between humans and apes. This is the first time that skulls and skeletons have been found together. "Now we will be able to see how these creatures moved -- the length of their arms in relation to their legs," said Clarke. Little Foot will provide important evidence to the critical parting of ways between hominids and African apes five to seven million years ago.