|1/2. H. naledi skulls shown here were included in the new study. cc John Hawks_Wits University|
New statistical analysis of the most mysterious fossil species within the homo genus, Homo naledi, suggests this ancient hominid may be a million years younger than previously believed. If confirmed, this new, relatively young age of approximately 912,000 years would increase the number of Homo species to have survived into the Stone Age. A solid age for the fossils is essential in determining their place in Homo evolution.
It also means the small-brained H. naledi would have existed in Africa during the same time as larger-brained Homo species, just as the small-brained H. floresiensis may have done in Southeast Asia with the larger-brained H. erectus and H. sapiens...
... Now, paleoanthropologist Mana Dembo with the Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, Canada, and her research team, have provisionally dated H. naledi as having lived less than a million years ago. After analyzing 60,000 potential evolutionary trees to determine which one provided the best fit for the tooth and skull measurements of 21 hominid species, chimpanzees, gorillas and H. naledi, they’ve dated H. naledi based on the rate of development of these features. [...] newhistorian.com / Link 2