Figure 9. | Geological and taphonomic context for the new hominin species Homo naledi from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa

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Geological and taphonomic context for the new hominin species Homo naledi from the Dinaledi Chamber, South Africa

Figure 9.

Affiliation details

James Cook University, Australia; University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa; University of Johannesburg, South Africa; University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States; Simon Fraser University, Canada; University of Colorado Denver, United States; Duke University, United States; Texas A&M University, United States; University of Zurich, Switzerland; American University, United States
Figure 9.
Download figureOpen in new tabFigure 9. Taphonomic spatial patterning within the fossil assemblage exposed in the excavation pit.

Taphonomic signatures and spatial orientations suggest that some of the assemblage may be para-authochthonous in nature, rather than primary or in situ. This scenario provides a mechanism for explaining the combination of near- or fully-anatomically articulated skeletal material and elements, which are heavily commingled and in a non-horizontal resting state (from near-vertical to oblique long-axis orientations). (A) Example of an articulated ankle region. (B) Example of an articulated hand. (C) Example of cluster of skeletal elements showing disarticulated elements in a non-horizontal resting state. Note long bone fragment in near-vertical alignment, compared to normal horizontal or near-horizontal alignment of the commingled elements surrounding it. Labels denote specimen numbers.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7554/eLife.09561.011