A team of Archeologists discovered the oldest stone tools. They are older than humans.
A new find of stone tools is changing the perception of species that lived before the first humans in the Home genus. A team of scientists discovered 3.3 million years old stone tools in Kenya. These stone tools are 700,000 years older than the oldest stone tools known so far.
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The incredible revelation about this is that species that lived before the first humans have been already using tools. Ancient species such as Australopithecus afarensis or Kenyanthropus platyops have already been more advanced than previously thought.
"They are significantly earlier than anything that has been found previously," said Dr Nick Taylor, from the National Centre of Scientific Research (CNRS) in France and the University of Leiden in the Netherlands according to the BBC. "It's really quite astonishing to think what separates the previous oldest site and this site is 700,000 years of time. It's monumental."
So far science assumed that the Home habilis was the first to use tools. Now that has to be corrected. There have been species that used several hundred thousand years before. These previously thought primitive species had human and ape-like features.
"This discovery challenges the idea that the main characters that make us human—making stone tools, eating more meat, maybe using language—all evolved at once in a punctuated way, near the origins of the genus Homo," says Jason Lewis, a paleoanthropologist at Rutgers University and co-author of the study according to the Smithonian.
Dr Ignacio de la Torre, from University College London's Institute of Archaeology, described this as "a game-changing" find. "It's the most important discovery in the last 50 years," he told BBC News.
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The historic findings have been published in Nature. The full article is available in full online as part of the nature.com content sharing initiative.