Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Transitional Primate Fossil: NOT Missing Link!

This is Ida, a spectacularly preserved 47-million-year-old primate fossil from the Messel Pit in Germany. She is NOT the missing Link.

It is a transitional fossil, belonging to a new genus and species of primates: Darwinius masillae.

It has some features of the Strepsirrhini, popularly known as "wet nose" primates - the primate suborder that contains lemurs, but which does not belong to the human lineage.

However, the authors say that other features suggest it lies within the other primate group: the Haplorrhini, "dry nose primates", which contains tarsiers, monkeys, apes and humans.

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