Hominin tracks in southern Africa: a review and an approach to identification

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dc.contributor.author Helm, Charles W.
dc.contributor.author Lockley, Martin G.
dc.contributor.author Cole, Kevin
dc.contributor.author Noakes, Timothy D.
dc.contributor.author McCrea, Richard T.
dc.date.accessioned 2019-01-16T10:14:22Z
dc.date.available 2019-01-16T10:14:22Z
dc.date.issued 2019-01
dc.identifier.issn 2410-4418
dc.identifier.uri https://hdl.handle.net/10539/26277
dc.description.abstract Three Late Pleistocene hominin tracksites have been reported from coastal aelioanites in South Africa. Two have been dated to 124 ka and 117 ka , and the third is inferred to be 90 ka. There are no other globally reported sites for probable Homo sapiens tracks older than 46 ka. Given this documented record, a search for further hominin tracksites in southern Africa may well yield additional positive results. However, this is a field that demands scientific rigour, as false positive tracksites (pseudotracks) may occur. Criteria have been developed for the identification of fossil vertebrate tracks and hominin tracks, but these are specific neither to southern Africa nor to aeolianites.An important caveat is that the tracks of shod humans would not fulfil these criteria. Preservation of tracks varies with facies and is known to be suboptimal in aeolianites. An analysis of the tracks from the three documented South African sites, along with pseudotracks and tracks of questionable provenance, allows for the proposal and development of guidelines for fossil hominin track identification that are of specific relevance to southern Africa. Such guidelines have broader implications for understanding the constraints that track preservation and substrate have on identifying diagnostic morphological features. en_ZA
dc.description.sponsorship Palaeontological Scientific Trust (PAST) en_ZA
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher Evolutionary Studies Institute en_ZA
dc.rights Copyright 2019 the Authors en_ZA
dc.subject trackways en_ZA
dc.subject hominin en_ZA
dc.subject Pleistocene en_ZA
dc.subject aeolianites en_ZA
dc.subject pseudotracks en_ZA
dc.title Hominin tracks in southern Africa: a review and an approach to identification en_ZA
dc.type Article en_ZA
dc.journal.volume 53 en_ZA
dc.journal.title Palaeontologia africana en_ZA
dc.description.librarian JNC2019 en_ZA
dc.funder Palaeontological Scientific Trust (PAST) en_ZA

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