“Lucy” the Ancient Human Ancestor Was Not as Intelligent as an Ape; How Did She Die?

Apparently, early human ancestors, such as Lucy, were less intelligent than the apes of today (orangutans, gorillas, and chimps), study finds.

Lucy was a so-called ‘Australopithecus,’ and she was one of the first early humans, who had a small brain if we are to compare it with us, but they did have many human-like features.

Researchers have previously thought that Lucy had a similar intelligence to the great apes, and they had facts that they had identical sized brains. But researchers now found that blood flowed less fastly to the Australopithecine brain than to the brain of the modern great apes. As a matter of fact, the openings for arteries from the skull of the modern apes would have allowed for double the rate of blood to flow to the brain.

Blood flow rates to the brain are known to show both the brain’s rate of metabolism and the level of intelligence.  As per findings, the intelligence developed much faster in the modern human, probably with the rising social complexity.

Who was Lucy?

“Lucy” is the fossil remains of a female Australopithecus afarensis, or, as it’s commonly known, the oldest early humans. She was found on a dig site which is called Hadar, in the north of Ethiopia, back in 1974. The remains are about 40% of her complete skeleton, and they have been dated to 3.2 million years ago. She had a small skull, and she was able to walk upright. Some experts suggested that she was spending time dwelling up trees. Back in 2016, researchers stated that she might have died from falling out of a tree.

Roger Seymour of the University of Adelaide measured the size of the canals from the skull of the living apes and then compared them to those that found the fossilized skulls of the human ancestors.

 

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