Human fossils discovered

The Wits Institute for Human Evolution have discovered more fossils belonging to ‘Karabo’

A scan showing molars (circled) and hominin bones (arrows) believed to belong to Karabo. Picture: Wits University.

JOHANNESBURG - Scientists from the Wits Institute for Human Evolution, have discovered a large rock containing more skeletal remains of 'Karabo', which was discovered in the Cradle of Humankind three years ago.

"We have discovered parts of a jaw and critical aspects of the body including what appear to be a complete femur, ribs, vertebrae and other important limb elements, some never before seen in such completeness in the human fossil record", says Professor Lee Berger.

Berger said this discovery will almost certainly make Karabo the most complete early human ancestor skeleton discovered.

"We are obviously quite excited as it appears that we now have some of the most critical and complete remains of the skeleton, albeit encased in solid rock".

The remains are entrenched in a rock, about a metre in diameter, and is invisible to the casual observer.

The rock lay unnoticed in the Wits laboratories for almost three years, until early June 2012, when one of the scientists noticed what appeared to be a hominin molar.

Subsequent CT scans have revealed several bones, encased in the rock.

A laboratory to be built at the Maropeng Visitor Centre, will allow the public to watch as scientists uncover the skeleton.