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Wild chimpanzee behavior suggests that a savanna-mosaic habitat did not support the emergence of hominin terrestrial bipedalism

Drummond-Clarke, Rhianna C; Kivell, Tracy L; Sarringhaus, Lauren; Stewart, Fiona A; Humle, Tatyana; Piel, Alex K; (2022) Wild chimpanzee behavior suggests that a savanna-mosaic habitat did not support the emergence of hominin terrestrial bipedalism. Science Advances , 8 (50) , Article eadd9752. 10.1126/sciadv.add9752. Green open access

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Abstract

Bipedalism, a defining feature of the human lineage, is thought to have evolved as forests retreated in the late Miocene-Pliocene. Chimpanzees living in analogous habitats to early hominins offer a unique opportunity to investigate the ecological drivers of bipedalism that cannot be addressed via the fossil record alone. We investigated positional behavior and terrestriality in a savanna-mosaic community of chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes schweinfurthii) in the Issa Valley, Tanzania as the first test in a living ape of the hypothesis that wooded, savanna habitats were a catalyst for terrestrial bipedalism. Contrary to widely accepted hypotheses of increased terrestriality selecting for habitual bipedalism, results indicate that trees remained an essential component of the hominin adaptive niche, with bipedalism evolving in an arboreal context, likely driven by foraging strategy.

Type: Article
Title: Wild chimpanzee behavior suggests that a savanna-mosaic habitat did not support the emergence of hominin terrestrial bipedalism
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.add9752
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.add9752
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third-party material in this article are included in the Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Keywords: Animals, Humans, Hominidae, Pan troglodytes, Grassland, Ecosystem, Fossils, Trees, Biological Evolution
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Dept of Anthropology
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10162144
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