Back in 2015 it was reported new fossils had been found dating back to 3.4 mya (million years ago) and researchers say it is an entirely new species of early human ancestors previously unknown. It is believed that this AHA (ancient human ancestor) lived side by side with Australopithecus afarensis (Lucy). Researchers thing this new AHA species was one of SEVERAL diverse species of hominins living in northern Ethiopia, Africa between 3.3-3.5 mya.
The teeth and jawbone fossils were found back in 2011 after a long dig. The new species has been named Australopithecus deyiremeda. It’s name means “close relative” in the Afar language. They were found 22 miles from where the famous Lucy (A. afarensis) fossils were found at Hadar, Ethiopia.
The jaw of these hominins is “beefier” than Lucy’s species and its teeth are also smaller. So which species gave rise to Homo genus and modern humans? It appears that there were several hominin species coexisting throughout the human fossil record! And although they coexisted it doesn’t necessarily mean all of the varied hominins got along and lived in peace and love 🙂
Discovery of A. deyiremeda came on the heels of the dating of Little Foot to 3.67 mya and the ASTOUNDING FIND of 2 myr (million years old) SOFT TISSUE FROM A. SEDIBA FROM A CAVE NEAR JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA. Human evolution is NOT straight line but, in FACT, is a VERY TWISTED BUSH complete with interbreeding and retrobreeding!!
Finally, I noticed in the comments section of the original article (see link below) that “Inventor” commented that Australopithecus likely was the ancient ancestor of chimpanzees while Paranthropus was likely the ancient ancestor of gorillas which is something I’ve also considered.