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Ardipithecus kadabba: Late Miocene Evidence from the Middle Awash, Ethiopia

Series: The Middle Awash Series

By: Yohannes Haile-Selassie(Editor), Giday WoldeGabriel(Editor), Tim White(Preface By)

640 pages, b/w plates, illustrations, tables

University of California Press

Hardback | Jul 2009 | #176283 | ISBN-13: 9780520254404
Availability: Usually dispatched within 4 days Details
NHBS Price: £70.95 $99/€81 approx

About this book

The second volume in a series dedicated to fossil discoveries made in the Afar region of Ethiopia, Ardipithecus kadabba contains the definitive description of the geological context and paleoenvironment of the early hominid Ardipithecus kadabba. This research by an international team describes Middle Awash late Miocene faunal assemblages recovered from sediments firmly dated to between 5.2 and 5.8 million years ago. Compared to other assemblages of similar age, the Middle Awash record is unparalleled in taxonomic diversity, composed of 2760 specimens representing at least sixty five mammalian genera.

This comprehensive evaluation of the vertebrates from the end of the Miocene in Africa provides detailed morphological and taxonomic descriptions of dozens of taxa, including species new to science. It also incorporates results from analyses of paleoenvironment, paleobiogeography, biochronology, and faunal turnover around the Pliocene-Miocene boundary, opening a new window on the evolution of mammals, African fauna, and its environments.

"The late F. Clark Howell had a vision of paleoanthropology as a fully integrated set of many scientific disciplines. This meticulously documented work is the first in a series that fulfills his vision. It is a magisterial synthesis of important early hominid fossils and their contemporaneous mammals placed in regionally dated stratigraphic sequences and reconstructed paleoenvironments. It is enhanced by images of sites and moments of discovery that are usually left to popular articles and that will give the reader a glimpse of the rigors of field work in a remote region of Africa."
– Alan Walker, Pennsylvania State University

"This carefully planned and creatively crafted book is a record of a previously little-known niche of Africa's past. It recounts the tale of more than three thousand fossils, including twenty hominid specimens representing the new ancestral species Ardipithecus kadabba and their location in space, time and environment. Together they paint a picture of Africa in the late Miocene, of five to six million years ago. It was a part of northeast Africa, the Middle Awash of Ethiopia, at a time when it was rent by volcanoes and rifting. From this tectonically ravaged past, one marvels at such beauteous byproducts as this book reveals. To do justice to Ethiopia's surprises needs an exceptional book. This volume is worthy of the challenge: it is a model of its kind and will be hard to surpass. Happily, this is the first great volume on such matters to be edited by two sons of Africa, Doctors Haile-Selassie and WoldeGabriel, with a cast of twenty-five contributors from eight countries."
– Phillip V. Tobias, F.R.S., For.M.NAS, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg

"Here we have the life and times of Ardipithecus kadabba, the intriguing hominin lying near the divergence of the human lineage from that of the African Great Apes. Meticulously put together and rigorously documented, this book illustrates the intrinsic value of the best monographic publications of its kind. It provides rich, detailed information concerning A. kadabba, the other creatures that populated the eastern African landscape in the late Miocene, and their geological and paleoenvironmental surroundings. Synthesizing these data into an illuminating picture of one of our very earliest plausible ancestors, situated in its temporal and environmental context, the book is valuable not just for paleoanthropologists, but for all biologists interested in the ancient fauna of this great region of the world, its history and paleobiogeography."
– Andrew Hill, Yale University


Series Preface Tim White
Preface Yohannes Haile-Selassie and Giday Wolde Gabriel

Yohannes Haile-Selassie and Giday Wolde Gabriel

Stratigraphy of the Adu-Asa Formation
Giday WoldeGabriel, William K. Hart, Paul R. Renne,
Yohannes Haile-Selassie, and Tim White

Volcanic Record of the Adu-Asa Formation
William K. Hart, Giday WoldeGabriel, Yohannes Haile-Selassie,
and Paul R. Renne

Paul R. Renne, Leah E. Morgan, Giday WoldeGabriel, William K. Hart,
and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Small Mammals
Henry B. Wesselman, Michael T. Black, and Mesfi n Asnake

Stephen R. Frost, Yohannes Haile-Selassie, and Leslea Hlusko

Yohannes Haile-Selassie, Gen Suwa, and Tim White

Yohannes Haile-Selassie and F. Clark Howell

Yohannes Haile-Selassie, Elisabeth S. Vrba, and Faysal Bibi

Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Jean-Renaud Boisserie and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Giraffi dae
Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Raymond L. Bernor and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Ioannis X. Giaourtsakis, Cesur Pehlevan, and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Haruo Saegusa and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Thomas Lehmann

Denise F. Su, Stanley H. Ambrose, David DeGusta, and Yohannes

Raymond L. Bernor, Lorenzo Rook, and Yohannes Haile-Selassie

Biochronology, Faunal Turnover, and Evolution
Yohannes Haile-Selassie, Tim White, Raymond L. Bernor,
Lorenzo Rook, and Elisabeth S. Vrba

Yohannes Haile-Selassie and Giday Wolde Gabriel


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Yohannes Haile-Selassie is Curator and Head of Physical Anthropology at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History in Ohio. Giday WoldeGabriel is a geologist at the Earth Environmental Sciences Division at Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico.

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