Ape and human cast

Fossils>> Dinosaur • The UK/South Africa

Published: Monday 30 November -0001

imageIt is currently the hottest topic in palaeoanthropology, and visitors to London’s Natural History Museum can now get to see what all the fuss is about. The institution has taken delivery of casts of Australopithecus sediba.

The 1.9-million-year-old creature caused a sensation when its fossil remains were discovered in South Africa in 2010. A. sediba has a curious mix of ape and human features, suggesting it could be one of our direct ancestors.

The replicas are a gift from South Africa and University of the Witwatersrand, which is leading the investigation into the fossils. Ian Owens, the museum’s director of science told BBC, “Researchers will get to work with it and the public will get to see it. We hope that will help bring the science alive.”

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