The Donner Party and Cannibalism: The Research Continues

I haven’t forgot about Australopithecus sediba – I just got carried away on the osteology and am rewriting the post. In the meantime I wanted to mention some research on a subject that I have written about previously namely, cannibalism and the Donner Party.
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Can’t Get Enough Australopithecus sediba

I’ll have something up tonight, but in the meantime Jim Kidder has a ton of articles on the subject. Check them out.
Also Zimmer, Hawks, and Laelaps

Begging for an article

I hate to be a chronic beggar, but can someone send me a copy of the article below:
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Some Random Thoughts About Australopithecus sediba

I am going to be very busy today so I won’t get an in depth post up on Australopithecus sediba until tomorrow. In the meantime three items jumped out at me so I thought I would, briefly, mention them.

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Australopithecus sediba: Was the Embargo Broken

I will have more to say about the find itself this evening (hopefully), in the meantime time there have been more than a few accusations of someone breaking the embargo on the story. Ivan Oransky at Embargo Watch looks at the issue. Turns out it was a case of a reporter doing some interesting detective work and scooping the competition. The reporter in question emailed Ivan Oransky and I would like to quote one small part of it – a part that raises some profound questions about science journals and the embargo process:

We did not receive any embargoed press releases on this paper or the find until Monday morning and gathered information about the story in a perfectly reasonable journalistic manner. On Saturday evening I also checked to see if there were any embargoed press releases on Eurekalert and could find none.

Can this be an embargo break if no official embargo has been issued?

Should Science be able to put an embargo on information that has not come from them and has been obtained from other sources? [bolding mine – afarensis]

Does this mean that if I speak to any scientist who is hoping to have a paper in Science in the future, then I am prevented from publishing anything about this until it appears in Science?

The bolded question is , IMHO, incredibly important. I would say that, no Science does not have that right nor should they. But that is just me and I could be wrong.

Blog Roll Update

I’m going to be working on my blog roll this weekend and if you know of any blogs I’m missing in the science/biology/anthropology area leave a link in comments. I should also mention that I am also responsible for the links at The Panda’s Thumb so if you see anything missing there as well leave a comment.

Illinois Archaeology Video

This video from the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency is pretty cool! Here is the description:

This short, narrated video shows the discovery and investigation of a one-thousand-year-old Native American village in what is now East St. Louis, Illinois. The video graphically demonstrates why archaeological investigations are performed and what we can learn from these investigations into America’s past.

78th Street Archeological Site, Native American occupations located at the foundation of the Katie Harper Wright Elementary School features an Illinois archaeology project at the construction site of a new elementary school in East St. Louis. The video explains the importance of archeology in easy to understand language that is accessible to school children and adults alike. 3-D interpretive renderings help visualize Native American life up to 1,000 years ago.

The 78th Street archaeology site includes Mississippian (1000 – 1150 A.D) and Oneota (1300 – 1400 A.D.) occupations, with the Oneota artifacts and evidence representing one of the largest such sites discovered to date in this archaeological rich area of the country. The site was first identified in 1989 during a required State of Illinois review process as part of a planned residential development.

The archaeological investigation was conducted by Prairie Archaeology & Research, Ltd. of Springfield, Illinois in 2005, the firm that also produced the video.

New Hominins

Science is making the papers on the newly discovered hominins, named Australopithecus sediba open access. They can be found here. I’ll have more to say on them this evening.

Count The Wrong! Nelson and Ontogenetic Depth

Looks like we won’t have Paul Nelson to kick around anymore! He seems to be trying to make good on his promise to provide details on ontogenetic depth. I know, I’m shocked too, but, well, there it is. Says Paul:

Rather, building animals de novo by known biological (evolutionary) processes is an evolutionary problem. Common descent by natural selection is the main theory on the table in 2010. It’s the theory that, in this OD 2.0 series, I hope to show does not

Coffee, says I! At any rate, how many errors can you spot in that short paragraph?

Ling Bua? I Thought it was Taung.

I think the title of my post says it all