Bipedality, the ability to walk upright on two legs, is a hallmark of human evolution. Many primates can stand up and walk around for short periods of time, but only humans use this posture for their primary mode of locomotion.
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.
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.
On June 6th, Dr. Erin Vogel gave a lecture titled "Primate Palate: Orangutans, Obesity, and Human Evolution" as part of a joint production by the American Museum of Natural History and The Leakey Foundation.