Leakey Foundation grantee Kate Detweiler from Florida Atlantic University is the first to document that two genetically distinct species of guenon monkeys inhabiting Gombe National Park in Tanzania, Africa, have been successfully mating and producing hybrid offspring for hundreds maybe even thousands of years.
The vast majority of lemur species are on the edge of extinction, experts warn. But not every lemur species faces a grim future. A study funded in part by The Leakey Foundation has shown that there may be as many as 1.3 million white-fronted brown lemurs still in the wild, and mouse lemurs may number more than 2 million.
Guest Post, 50th Anniversary
Tarsiers are small (tennis ball-sized) nocturnal primates that have the largest eyes relative to body size of any known living or extinct vertebrate. Their enormous eyes are thought to enhance visually-guided predation by increasing visual sensitivity in dim light and contrasting an object of focus with a progressive depth of field.
Journal Article, Guest Post
As biologists explore the variation across the genomes of living people, they’ve found evidence of evolution at work. Particular variants of genes increase or decrease in populations through time. Sometimes this happens by chance. Other times these changes in frequency result from the gene’s helping or hindering individuals’ survival.
Together with their sister group the Neanderthals, Denisovans are the closest extinct relatives of currently living humans. Now researchers have discovered a tiny fossil from an individual who is the offspring of a Neanderthal mother and a Denisovan father.
Discovered more than half a century ago in Kenya and sitting in museum storage ever since, the roughly 20-million-year-old fossil Propotto leakeyi was long classified as a fruit bat. Now, it's helping researchers rethink the early evolution of lemurs, distant primate cousins of humans that today are only found on the island of Madagascar, some 250 miles off the eastern coast of Africa.
An international team, including Leakey Foundation grantees and researchers at Stony Brook University and the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History, has found the earliest and largest monumental cemetery in eastern Africa.
In the News
There are at least 370 million indigenous people in some 90 countries around the world. Practicing unique traditions, they retain social, cultural, economic and political characteristics that are distinct from those of the dominant societies within which they live.