MISSING LINK

Fossil Could Be Human-Ape Connection

A fossil found in a South African cave may provide the missing link between humans and our ape ancestors. The fossil, called Australopithecus sediba, shows hands and a brain similar to that of humans, but seems to have walked more like a chimpanzee than a modern human. Until now scientists traced our ancestry to fossils in East Africa of the species Homo habilis or Homo rudolfensis, but the newly discovered specimen is several hundred thousand years older than those. “The many very advanced features found in the brain and body, and the earlier date, make it possibly the best candidate ancestor for our genus, the genus Homo,” says Lee Berger, professor at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.