Walk this way - news story - 17 Apr 2012

The importance of trace fossils

A lot can be learned from fossil footprints. Herd behaviour can be shown by determining numbers of individuals travelling together and how they move between one another. Predation techniques - speed and direction of approach etc - and prey response - fight or flight - can be learned by studying the interaction of predator and prey. A more careful look at the finer details can also tell us about biomechanics and anatomy. The bones of the feet, the animal's weight and stride length, and so on.

You can read an article about the gait of two human ancestors by clicking here. It's possible to gain some understanding of how these hominins walked, how their feet worked and possibly how suited they were for bipedal walking. And how far removed from their arboreal roots they may have been...