Brief communication: predatory bird damage to the Taung type-skull of Australopithecus africanus Dart 1925.

  title={Brief communication: predatory bird damage to the Taung type-skull of Australopithecus africanus Dart 1925.},
  author={Lee R. Berger},
  journal={American journal of physical anthropology},
  volume={131 2},
  • L. Berger
  • Published 1 October 2006
  • Environmental Science
  • American journal of physical anthropology
In this issue of the Journal, McGraw et al. ([2006] Am. J. Phys. Anthropol. 000:00-00) present new data on the taphonomic signature of bone assemblages accumulated by crowned hawk eagles (Stephanoaetus coronatus), including characteristic talon damage to the inferior orbits of primates preyed upon by these birds. Reexamination of the Taung juvenile hominin specimen (the type specimen of Australopithecus africanus Dart 1925) reveals previously undescribed damage to the orbital floors that is… 

Figures from this paper

Further evidence for eagle predation of, and feeding damage on, the Taung child
New taphonomic evidence, combined with previously recognized similarities in breakage patterns and other assemblage characteristics, bolsters the case that a large bird of prey was responsible for the death of the juvenile hominin from Taung.
Investigating the Role of Eagles as Accumulating Agents in the Dolomitic Cave Infills of South Africa
A lack of support for eagles as collectors of the smaller mammals that make up their typical prey weakens the hypothesis that eagles represented a significant threat to the large, presumably more difficult to capture, juvenile hominins.
Brief communication: Plio-Pleistocene eagle predation on fossil cercopithecids from the Humpata Plateau, southern Angola.
It is concluded that at least some of the Angolan cercopithecids were most likely raptor prey and hypothesize that raptor predation has been a strong and perhaps underappreciated selective force during the course of primate evolution.
The Evolutionary History and Palaeo-Ecology of Primate Predation: Macaca sylvanus from Plio-Pleistocene Europe as a Case Study
This article explored co-occurrence and potential interaction between carnivorans (with particular reference to felids) and Macaca sylvanus, which was widespread and present in Europe from the late Miocene to the late Pleistocene.
Identification of fossilized eggshells from the Taung hominin locality, Taung, Northwest Province, South Africa
A systematic analysis of fossilized eggshell fragments is conducted in order to document the presence of specific avian taxa at Taung during the Plio-Pleistocene, establishing direct evidence for a raptor component in the TaunG faunal assemblage.
A chomped chimp: New evidence of tooth marks on an adult chimpanzee (Pan troglodytes verus).
This study is the most extensive documentation to date of a modern adult chimpanzee skull exhibiting tooth marks by a large mammal, thus providing new evidence to help identify and interpret other events of predation and scavenging of large-bodied apes in the modern and fossil records.
Hunted or Scavenged Neanderthals? Taphonomic Approach to Hominin Fossils with Carnivore Damage
Carnivore damage on Neanderthal fossils is a much more common taphonomic modification than previously thought. Its presence could have different explanations, including predatory attacks or
A call to search for fossilised gastric pellets
Emetolites would offer a valuable fossil record, and thus they warrant consideration by field paleontologists and preparators, and a greater awareness of their probable characteristics may lead us to discover that they are more abundant than has been assumed.
The Dart Deposits of the Buxton Limeworks, Taung, South Africa, and the Context of the Taung Australopithecus Fossil
ABSTRACT The geologic, environmental, and taphonomic context of the Taung Australopithecus africanus skull has been the subject of speculation and sporadic research since its first publication. In


Eagle involvement in accumulation of the Taung child fauna
Data is presented demonstrating the similarity of the Taung hominid assemblage to those accumulated by extant large birds of prey and it is suggested that such a bird of prey was the taphonomie agent responsible for the accumulation of most of theTaung fossils, including the Australopithecus infant skull.
Taphonomic aspects of crowned hawk-eagle predation on monkeys.
Australopithecus africanus: The Man-Ape of South Africa
TOWARDS the close of 1924, Miss Josephine -*- Salmons, student demonstrator of anatomy in the University of the Witwatersrand, brought to me the fossilised skull of a cercopithecid monkey which,
The Hunters or the Hunted?: An Introduction to African Cave Taphonomy
  • C. K. Brain
  • Geography, Environmental Science
    Geological Magazine
  • 1983
"Amongst scientists involved [in taphonomy], C. K. Brain stands out as the pioneer; this impressive book is a statement of his investigations. . . . The Hunters or the Hunted? is a very important
Are vigilance, risk from avian predators and group size consequences of habitat structure? a comparison of three species of squirrel monkey (Saimiri oerstedii, S. boliviensis, and S. sciureus)
Changes in the risk incurred by individual members of a squirrel monkey troop as a consequence of variation in group size are likely of much smaller magnitude than the risk exposure resulting from local habitat structure.
Predation on primates: Where are we and what's next?
It is shown that the anecdotal literature is sufficiently rich in some cases to provide convincing evidence for the importance of predation to individual primate species; and many difficulties arise in testing predictions concerning the evolutionary consequences ofpredation, especially when using comparisons across species.
Predation risk as an influence on group size in cercopithecoid primates: implications for social structure
The results suggest that male strategies to monopolize females depend both on the females' grouping patterns and on the needs of both sexes to maximize group size under high predation pressure.
Within‐group vigilance in red colobus and redtail monkeys
  • A. Treves
  • Biology, Psychology
    American journal of primatology
  • 1999
This study joins several others that indicate that primate vigilance is unresponsive to group size, and new models that take into account association patterns below the level of the group may be needed.
The load of the Taung child
Lifting the Taung child