Traces of a 300,000-year-old man was discovered in Germany (photo)
An international research team has discovered the oldest human footprints known in Germany. The footprints were discovered in the Paleolithic Schöningen complex in Lower Saxony, which is approximately 300,000 years old.
The footprints, presumably of Homo heidelbergensis, are surrounded by several animal tracks and present a picture of the ecosystem of the time. This is reported by Phys.org.
It is noted that the footprints and information from sedimentological, archaeological, paleontological and paleobotanical analyses provide insight into the paleo-environment and mammals that once lived in the area. Among the prints, there are three footprints that match those of hominins - about 300,000 years old.
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Scientists attribute two of the three human footprints in Schöningen to young people who used the lake and its resources in a small group of mixed ages.
"Depending on the season, plants, fruits, leaves, shoots and mushrooms were available around the lake. Our findings confirm that extinct human species lived on the shores of a lake or river with shallow water. This is also known from other periods of the Lower and Middle Pleistocene," the researchers said.
In addition to human footprints, the team analysed a number of elephant tracks that could be attributed to the extinct species Palaeoloxodon antiquus, a straight-tusked elephant that was the largest land animal at the time and whose adult bulls reached a body weight of up to 13 tonnes.
Recall that a 14th-century papal bull was found in an abandoned cemetery in Poland.
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