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Primates and Human Origins

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1 Primates and Human Origins
Chapter 32 Section 3

2 a well-developed cerebrum relatively long fingers and toes
What Is a Primate? They have: binocular vision a well-developed cerebrum relatively long fingers and toes opposable digits arms that can rotate around their shoulder joints. (test question) primate video (test questions)

3 Great apes, also called hominoids, include gibbons, orangutans, gorillas, chimpanzees, and humans. Recent molecular studies confirm that chimpanzees are humans' closest relatives among the great apes. Humans and chimps share an astonishing 98 percent of their DNA!

4 Hominids comparing Hominids also displayed a remarkable increase in brain size. Most of the difference in brain size results from an enormously expanded cerebrum—the “thinking” area of the brain. Have the same method of reproduction as other primates. (test question)


6 Australopithecus afarensis—
described from a remarkably complete female skeleton, nicknamed Lucy, who stood only about 1 meter tall lucy Footprint fossils indicate that this species was bipedal. (test question) Bipedal means walk on two feet

7 Between 3.8 and 3.6 million years ago, members of a species of Australopithecus made these footprints at Laetoli in Tanzania.

8 The Genus Homo About 2.5 million years ago, a new kind of hominid appeared. Its fossils show that it resembled modern humans enough to be classified in the genus Homo. Because these fossils were found with tools made of stone and bone, researchers called the species Homohabilis (HAB-ih-lus), which means “handy man.”


10 Homohabilis Homo habilis was the first of several species in our genus to arise in Africa. About 2 million years ago, a species larger than H. habilis appeared. It had a bigger brain and downward-facing nostrils that resembled those of modern humans. Earliest hominid that belonged to the same species as modern humans. (test question)

11 Fossil data and molecular evidence suggest that hominids left Africa in several waves map


13 Neanderthals Neanderthals, as they are commonly called, flourished from Europe through western Asia between about 200,000 and 30,000 years ago. Evidence from Neanderthal sites in Europe and the Middle East suggests that they not only made stone tools but also lived in organized social groups. (test question)

14 Assignment: Read Chapter 32 section 3 Answer page

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