A team led by Dr. Yohannes Haile-Selassie, Curator of The Cleveland Natural History Museum, has discovered a 3.6 million year old partial skeleton of an Australopithecus afarensis, the same species as “Lucy”. This new hominid, nicknamed “Kadanuumuu”, which translates to “big man” in the Afar language, is 400,000 years old than Lucy.
The fossil hominid stood between five to five and a half feet tall, nearly two feet taller than Lucy and contained the most complete clavicle and shoulder blades ever discovered in the human fossil record. The specimen also provides further information on bipedal proficiency and limb proportions, expanding on the limited information the Lucy skeleton provided. This new evidence indicates that advanced upright walking occurred much earlier than previously thought.
Initial analysis results will be published the week of June 21, 2010 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science.