Interesting Fossil Pictures: Australopithecus afarensis

AL 288-1 casts a large shadow. The fact that such a large percentage of Lucy’s skeleton was recovered has overshadowed – at least in the public’s mind – that fact that a wide variety of fossil material was recovered at Hadar.


Femur 1

Pictured above are several of the proximal femurs – the part of the femur that articulates with your hip – that were recovered from Hadar. Note the angle that the neck makes with what remains of the shaft.

Femur 2

The distal femur, which makes up part of the knee, is also interesting. Note the way the shaft is angled in “D” and the elliptical profile of the condyles in “E.”

Tibia 1

The tibia articulates with the femur and the patella to form the knee. Unlike the femur, it does not have an angle. What does all this mean? You can find the answer at eLucy.

Really, though, I just wanted to post the above pictures, which come from:

Lovejoy, Johanson, and Coppens, (1982) Hominid Lower Limb Bones Recovered From the Hadar Formation: 1974-1977 Collections. AJPA 57:679-700

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One Response

  1. I spent four years at university staring at and handling hominid fossils and it still blows me away when I see these. Thank you.

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