Photo by: Purwo Kuncoro

Virtual Summer Travel Series: Egypt and Mongolia

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Egypt’s Fayum desert, the site of important fossil discoveries that have shed light on the earliest stages of primate evolution.

You’re invited to join The Leakey Foundation’s virtual Summer Travel Series and explore fascinating research sites with Leakey Foundation scientists as your guides.

This virtual travel series is a fundraiser for The Leakey Foundation’s Baldwin Fellowship program which provides scholarships to students from countries with limited opportunities for advanced degrees in subjects related to human evolution. Support a good cause while you learn from top experts, tour places the public will never get to visit, and “Zoom” to the far corners of the world from the comfort of your own home.

The first tour in the 2022 Summer Travel Series explored the Republic of Georgia and the prehistoric site of Dmanisi where researchers uncovered the earliest known evidence of ancient hominin migration from Africa.

On July 16, the Summer Travel Series visits the wind-swept desert of the Fayum Depression in northern Egypt with Leakey Foundation Baldwin Fellow Dr. Hesham Sallam and Dr. Erik Seiffert. No other region in the world has contributed more to our understanding of the origin of monkeys and the earliest stages in the evolution of our own group, the catarrhines, which ultimately gave rise to African and Asian monkeys, apes, and humans.

Travelers will be invited into the field camp at the spectacular BQ-2 site – the oldest primate-bearing site in the Fayum region – where you will see newly unearthed fossils and learn about the evidence for the origin of monkey-like primates in Africa.

Researchers from the PaleoMongolia team excavating at Tsagaan Agui in the Altai Mountains of Southern Mongolia. Image: PaleoMongolia

On August 10, be among the first to explore the only known stratified Ice Age archaeological site in the Gobi Desert and have the rare opportunity to see unpublished evidence of Mongolia’s first inhabitants and the world in which they lived.

Dr. Arina Khatsenovich and Dr. John Olsen will lead this virtual tour of their ongoing explorations of the Gobi Desert. They will focus on archaeological investigations of Tsagaan Agui (White Cave) where stone and bone artifacts and the fossils of extinct and living animals document complex patterns of human-environment and human-animal interactions. 

Reserve your space now for the next two virtual tours. Your donation to benefit the Baldwin Fellows program will be quadruple-matched!

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