Re: Did Lucy have human-like hands and feet?

Holly Reeser (
Fri, 09 Aug 1996 10:58:03 -0400

Steve Geller wrote:
> "Lucy" may be offered as a "missing link", but it's not all that
> certain. Australopithecines in general are most likely cousins of the
> human line -- perhaps one small group of them are our ancestors, not
> neccessarily the Lucy tribe.
> What Lusy tells us is that hominids begain walking upright as early as
> 3.5 million years ago. The same story is told by the Laetoli
> footprints. So upright walking was not a major selector
> for human evolution.
> --
> Steve Geller You haev omitted a very important recent find by Maeve Leakey -
Australopithecus anamensis. Securely dated at 4.4 mya it shows
nonambiguous evidence of bipedality in its tibia. The tibia's head is
aligned directly over the shaft indicating bideped stance and locomotion.

Although I agree that just becaue something is bipedal does not assure
its place in the direct ancestry for H.S.S's. And because of 50
morphological characters in common between A.africanus and H. habilis
and not between H. habilis and A. afarensis ..I find it hard to see A.
afarensis as being ancestral in any way to H.S.S. They are most likely
directly ancestral to the robust lineages and possess many more
synapomorphies (shared-derived characters) with the robusts.