Stones on the Move: the Real Life of a Chimpanzee Tool

The main goal is testing the hypothesis that the purported strategies of transport of resources by early hominins may have been misconstrued and instead may be more similar to the transport of objects by extant chimpanzees. Dr Susana Carvalho hypothesizes that transport distances in the Oldowan were the sum of many short bouts, which mislead archaeologists who take account only of the raw material sources and sites where tools were manufactured or discarded. Evolutionary, this is important because transport remains one of the main differences claimed to produce cognitive enhancement in early human versus non-human primates. Susana has conceived a new method using micro-radio-telemetry for this study.

The project is supported by National Geographic Society – Global Explorer Grant.