A. africanus dietry history indicated


July 23, 2019

A technique to tease out the dietary history of fossilized hominins    has been used with some of the more recent hominins in the human lineage, such as  H. sapiens and H. neanderthalensis. In a paper published in the 15 July edition of the journal Nature, a team led by Renaud Joannes-Boyau reports on the use of this technique with two fossil specimens from the species A. africanus from South Africa and living between 2.5 and to point 1 million years ago.

The technique is high resolution trace-element geochemical analysis and in the case of these specimens, indicates  high seasonal variability in food supply. There are also indications infants nursed breast milk for approximately a year.

Read the full paper in the journal Nature.