Tuesday, May 19, 2009

BONC #6: Everyone's crazy about this fossil!

Here she is! They call her Ida. She's a dog-sized mammal that lived 47 million years ago, and boy is everyone excited about her. She was just introduced to the world today and already has her own huge website, her own full-length TV movie, and I'm sure someone will soon come up with an Ida dance craze, Ida sneakers or an Ida-flavored ice cream.

What's the deal?

Well, they say that Ida is our ancestor, which means she is humans' great-great-great-great (keep saying great about a zillion times) grandmother. She is an early primate, but also has some very human features, like fingernails instead of claws and a special little bone in her foot that you have too. Oh, and she's also really well preserved, with even some of her stomach contents still hanging around (so we know what she had for lunch right before she croaked.)

Because of Ida, we're now even more clear than ever on how humans -- you and me -- evolved from earlier primates. The human story just keeps getting better and better!

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