anthro Exam 3 Notes - Notes for Exam 3 6.28.10 Monday...

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Notes for Exam 3 6.28.10 Monday Smithsonian website for Neanderthal morphing…. Intro to Paleoanthropology & Primate Evolution: Intro to Paleoanthropology o Continental drift o Paleoecological Reconstructions o Dating Methods Primate Evolution o Pre-primate evolution o Primate origins o Paleocene o Eocene o Oligocene Paleoanthropology – is the interdisciplinary subfield of physical anth. Focused on the primate and human fossil record, employing: Functional morphology Geology/paleontology (dating, excavation, geophysics, paleoecology, palynology, taphonomy, etc.) Phylogenetic Systematics Archaeology Continental Drift – the continents now were once one single super continent called Pangaea o Then broke up into 2 (Laurasia and Gondwonaland) o Effects of Continental Drift: Biogeapgraphy (geographic distribution of organisms); it will split species up Globa Climate; effects water currents which effects climate Paleoenvironmental Reconstructions: o Stable carbon isotopes (i.e. C3/C4): Temperature, aridity, plant type o Morphotypes (i.e. bovid limbs) – look at the structures of the limbs and can tell what environment they’re from Paleotological Dating Techniques: (3 major groups) o Relative Techniques – do not provide an absolute date, but allow dating of fossils or sediments relative to other fossils/sediments Stratigraphy – based on 3 geological principles Original Horizontaly
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Lateral continuity: layers extend laterally over a distance and can be related Superposition: younger layers will be deposited on top of older layers Biostratigraphy – based on dating by association and index fossils Dating by association: fossils of unknown date found in assoc. with fossils known to have lived during a specific time in the past allows relative dating Index Fossils: these widely dist. Fossils from limited time spans that can be used in relative dating comparisons o Absolute Techniques – provide absolute date, but often need specific materials to date not available at every site Use Radiometric Clocks Rely on radioactive decay of isotopes of certain elements present in the atmosphere. This decay is constant and unalterable Techniques measure the proportion of the isotopes in relation to their stable counterpart Half life: time it takes for half of the present isotopes to decay Radiocarbon Dating (C14): Remains of living organisms, half life = 5730 years, useful for < 58-62,000 years Potassium-Argon Dating (K-Ar): Uses volcanic rock, half-life = 1.3 billion years, useful for sediments > 100,000 years Paleomagnetic Technique – relative dating technique that can be calibrated to absolute dates based on major periodic changes in the Earth’s magnetic field.
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