Rocky road: Modern-day ‘ambulance chasers’ may have stumbled upon evidence of ancient human ancestry

Late last week, a team of Swedish geologists announced findings suggesting ancient prints discovered in eastern Sweden’s Malmö region might have been made by modern-day human ancestors.

“Very little testing of the prints has been done in the past, so any new information is significant,” Daniela Henriksson, who led the study, said in a statement.

The prints were discovered with the help of paleoclimatologist Anna Pettersson in 2007. To analyze them, Henriksson’s team traveled back to the land where the prints were found to capture fossils from nearby animals in order to estimate their ages.

Working with two longtime research collaborators, Tom Oldham, who has studied human anatomy, and Peter Moulton of the Australian National University, the team used Paleoclimatic dating method to conclude the tracks may have been made 10,000 to 18,000 years ago.

The findings are reported in the current issue of the scientific journal Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology.

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