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Types of fossil dating techniques

It is likely that all of the early hominins, including humans, supplemented their diets with protein and fat rich termites and ants just as some chimpanzees do today.

In his 1871 book entitled The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex, Charles Darwin speculated that fossils of the earliest humans and their immediate progenitors ultimately would be found somewhere in Africa.

He based this on the fact that the natural range of our nearest living relatives, chimpanzees and gorillas, is limited to Africa.

He concluded that we ultimately must have shared a now extinct common ancestor with those apes in Africa.

The other line seems to have lived more in mixed grassland and woodland environments, like the earlier australopithecines, and was primarily vegetarian.

The australopithecines took advantage of these new conditions.This meant that the Taung child must have been bipedal.In addition, the canine teeth were relatively short.This view was mostly rejected by the scientific world of the time.Before the 1920's, knowledge of our fossil ancestors only went back to the Neandertals in Europe and some presumably earlier human-like forms from Java, in Southeast Asia.

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The primate fossil record for this crucial transitional period leading to australopithecines is still scanty and somewhat confusing.

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