According to the article, a team of scientists recently discovered the age of over 50 footprints that were found in fossilized beach sediment near Trachilos, Crete in 2017. They are the oldest known pre-human footprints ever found, dating back more than six million years.
‘The tracks are nearly 2.5 million years older than the tracks from Laetoli in Tanzania, which are ascribed to Australopithecus afarensis (known as Lucy),’ Uwe Kirscher, on of the scientists who led the study, said.
Researchers were able to make their estimates by using geophysical and micropaleontological methods, and such dating shed light on the initial stage in the human evolution.
‘The oldest human walking foot had the ball of the ball, with a close-fitting and robust big toe, as well as continuously shortening side toes,’ Per Ahlberg, a co-author of the study, said. ‘The sole of his foot was shorter than that of Australopithecus. An arch of the foot was not yet pronounced and the heel was narrower.’
The studies also suggested that short-term desertification and geographical distribution of first human predecessors could be more related than previously thought.
According to Böhme, the Orrorin tugenensis was the oldest prehistoric man, originating in Kenya between 6.1 and 5.8 million years ago. Böhme believes the geographical distribution of early humans over 6.25 million years ago could have led to a large migration from Mesopotamia to Europe.