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Primates and Their Adaptations

Primates and Their Adaptations - light Upright posture...

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Primates and Their Adaptations Primates have modifications to their ulna and radius (bones of the lower arm) allowing them to turn their hand without needing to turn their elbow. Many primates can also swivel or turn their arms at the shoulder. These two adaptations offer advantages to life in the trees. Primates have five digits on their forelimbs. They are able to grasp objects with their forelimbs in what is known as a prehensile movement. A second modification makes one of the digits opposable, allowing the tips of the fingers and thumb to touch. Placement of the eyes on the front of the head increases depth perception, an advantageous trait in tree-dwelling primates. Changes in the location of rods and cones in the eye adapted primates for color vision as well as peripheral vision in dim
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Unformatted text preview: light. Upright posture allows a primate to view its surroundings as well as to use its hands for some other task. Hominids, the lineage leading to humans, had changes in the shape and size of their pelvis, femur, and knees that allowed bipedalism (walking on two legs). The change from quadruped to biped happened in stages, culminating in humans, who can walk or run on two legs. Several trends of primate evolution are evident in the teeth and jaw. First, change in the geometry of the jaw reduced the snout into a flat face. Second, changes in tooth arrangement and numbers increased the efficiency of those teeth for grinding food. Third, about 1.5 million years ago our diet changed from fruits and vegetables to include meat....
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