This paper describes a human skeleton from a rock-shelter in northeast Laos, dated to ~7000 BP. It was excavated in 2004 and moved en bloc to the Laos National Museum in Vientiane. Here we report observations made from the in situ skeleton. The burial is the largely complete but slightly damaged remains of a tall, middle-aged, probable male buried on his side in a flexed position. His teeth were heavily worn and one was infected but otherwise there is no evidence of poor health. We were not able to make an assessment of biological affiliation. In comparison with the very small samples of approximately contemporary skeletal remains from the wider region around the middle Mekong, it is clear that the burial position and dental health were not unusual, but that he was very tall for that period of prehistory.
Predation has been an evolutionary force in primates, driving changes in their behavior, cognition, and numerous morphological characteristics. There is little evidence regarding the counter-strategies of primates to predation, because previous studies on primates have focused on the animals eaten rather than the animals that survive. I report a case of predation in which an adult male baboon was preyed on by a leopard in the early morning in the wild and describe how the surviving baboons behaved. Based on this report, I consider the counter-strategies of baboons to leopard predation, such as staying at the sleeping site, producing alarm calls, and shifting the sleeping site. Further information from other predation events is needed to understand the evolution of anti-predation behaviors.
The vertebrate fossil localities of the Chorora Formation, Ethiopia, comprise one of only a few sub-Saharan African paleontological research areas that illuminate Late Miocene African mammalian and primate evolution. Field work at Chorora since 2007 has resulted in the establishment of new vertebrate fossil localities and a revised chronostratigraphic framework. The new Chorora Formation fossils include the earliest known records of Cercopithecinae, Hippopotaminae, and Leporidae in Africa. Two lineages of hipparionins are recognized at Chorora, a larger and smaller morph, forming potential phyletic links between the earlier Samburu Hills hipparionins and later Eurygnathohippus turkanensis and E. feibeli from Lothagam, Kenya. The Chorora colobines are larger than the >9 Ma Microcolobus and morphologically conservative with only moderate molar cusp notches. The Chorora cercopithecines represent the earliest documented occurrence of the subfamily.
The aims of this study are to examine the human skeletal remains from the Yuigahama-chusei-shudan-bochi (seika-ichiba) site, or YCSB-SI, to provide data regarding the metrics of the crania and limb bones, to compare these metrics with those of ancient Japanese skeletons, and to discuss the population variability of the medieval Japanese. The results provided several findings regarding the cranial and limb-bone traits of the YCSB-SI sample: (1) the YCSB-SI remains shared dolichocephaly with the remains from the other medieval series, but the YCSB-SI remains had the highest faces of all the medieval series; (2) there is a distinction between the YCSB-SI remains and the Jomon remains in that the former had a larger length–breadth index of the crania, higher Virchow’s facial and upper facial indices, smaller maximum length of the ulnae and tibiae, and a smaller mid-shaft index of the femora than the latter; and (3) the estimated stature from Fujii’s equations using the maximum length of the femur for YCSB-SI males and females was 158.7 and 146.3 cm, respectively, which is nearly equal to that of other medieval series but several centimeters shorter than that of the Kofun series.
In order to discuss possible differences in brain anatomy between Neanderthals and early modern humans, the original antemortem appearance of fossil crania that enclosed the brain must somehow be correctly restored, as soft tissues such as the brain are generally not fossilized. However, crania are typically fractured, fragmented, and deformed due to compaction and diagenesis. Furthermore, recovery of all component fragments of fossil crania is rare. Restoration of the brain morphology of fossil crania therefore necessitates correct assembly of the available fragments, eliminating distortions, and compensating for missing parts as a first step. This paper reviews the current status of computerized reconstruction methods, then provides an overview and future directions toward digital reconstruction of fossil crania and the associated brain morphology.
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