Hominin Environments in the East African Pliocene: An Assessment of the Faunal Evidence / Edition 1

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This volume brings together faunal analysts working at many sites spanning the East African Pliocene. Although most chapters focus on the vertebrate fauna of particular localities, authors take a broad approach that seeks to compare paleoenvironmental and paleoecological patterns across localities and among various taxonomic groups. This volume aims to synthesize large amounts of faunal data, and to present the evolution of East African vertebrates in the context of environmental and climatic changes during the Pliocene.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
From the reviews:

'This book provides valuable insights into the way archaeologists attempt to unravel human history and the daunting problems they face'. William Ruddiman, EOS Vol. 89 No. 18, April 2008.

'The book delves intensively and extensively into the methodologies for analyzing faunal change using the mammalian fossil record, paleoecology. The 12 papers contributed by more than 30 authors focus on carnivores, bovids, nonhuman primates, and small mammals, and provide suggestions for future research. … The large amount of data has yielded a significant integration of information and shows how different lines of study can strengthen the understanding of complex evolutionary problems. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students through professionals.' D. Bardack, CHOICE, Vol. 45 No. 10, June, 2008.

'The new book by Bobé et al. is much more circumscribed in its aspirations and coverage. … In addition, most authors are to be congratulated for appropriate taphonomic sensitivity in their approaches to the fossil record. … is useful to the interested nonspecialist, and they benefit from the uniformly clear style of presentation throughout.' Travis Rayne Pickering, American Journal of Physical Anthropology, 2008.

'This tome is a timely and welcome contribution to the hominin paleoenvironmental literature … . a must-have for students and senior researchers alike. … The volume signifies an important step forward in hominin paleoenvironmental research and certainly foreshadows a promising body of work yet to come from a bright and enthusiastic group of researchers.' Katie M. Binetti, PaleoAnthropology, 2008.

'René Bobé, Zeresenay Alemseged and Anna K. Behrensmeyer present a series of papers focused on reconstructing East African Pliocene environments through a diversity of faunal assessments. … this volume is important for all vertebrate palaeoecologists, as it provides useful case studies of many of the different approaches available in reconstructing ancient environments. … Overall, this volume is well-written, well-illustrated, and provides a snapshot of palaeoecological methods currently in use. … it represents a critical resource for researchers interested in vertebrate palaeoecology and/or Plio-Pleisene hominins.' Julien Louys, Journal of Human Evolution, Vol. 55, 2008.

'It is about a lot more than hominin environments … . this book is a necessary addition to his or her library, or if it could be used as class reading material. … The entire book makes an excellent reference for graduate students from the outlining of scales of reference in the fossil record … . Graduate seminars on mammalian paleoecology and methodologies could well use this book as the basis for in-depth discussions.' Kaye E. Reed, Journal of Mammalian Evolution, Vol. 16, 2009.

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Product Details

Table of Contents

1. Approaches to the analysis of faunal change during the East African Pliocene

Anna K. Behrensmeyer, René Bobe, Zeresenay Alemseged

2. Environmental hypotheses of Pliocene human evolution

Richard Potts

3. African Pliocene and Pleisene cercopithecid evolution and global climatic change

Stephen R. Frost

4. Patterns of change in the Plio-Pleisene carnivorans of eastern Africa: implications for hominin evolution

Margaret E. Lewis, Lars Werdelin

5. Stratigraphic variation in Suidae from the Shungura Formation and some coeval deposits

H.B.S. Cooke

6. Patterns of abundance and diversity in late Cenozoic bovids from the Turkana and Hadar Basins, Kenya and Ethiopia

René Bobe, Anna K. Behrensmeyer, Gerald G. Eck, John M. Harris

7. Comparability of fossil data and its significance for the interpretation of hominin envrironments: a case study in the lower Omo Valley, Ethiopia

Zeresenay Alemseged, René Bobe, Denis Geraads

8. The effects of collection strategy and effort on faunal recovery: a case study of the American and French collections from the Shungura Formation, Ethiopia

Gerald G. Eck

9. Serengeti micromammals and their implications for Olduvai paleoenvironments

Denné N. Reed

10. Taphonomy and paleoecological context of the Upper Laetolil Beds (Localities 8 and 9), Laetoli in northern Tanzania

Charles Musiba, Cassian Magori, Melissa Stoller, Tamara Stein, Scott Branting, Mike Vogt, Russell Tuttle, Benedikt Hallgrímsson, Saidi Killindo, Ferdinand Mizambwa, Felix Ndunguru, Audax Mabulla

11. The paleoecology of the Upper Laetolil Beds at Laetoli: a reconsideration of the large mammal evidence

Denise Su, Terry Harrison

12. Fauna, taphonomy and ecology of the Plio-Pleisene Chiwondo Beds, Northern Malawi

Oliver Sandrock, Ottmar Kullmer, Friedemann Schrenk, Y. M. Juwayeyi, Tim Bromage

Finale and future: investigating faunal evidence for hominin paleoecology in East Africa

Anna K. Behrensmeyer, Zeresenay Alemseged, René Bobe

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