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Updated 11:29 AM EDT, Tue, Jun 16, 2020

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Research Reveals the Diverse Shapes and Sizes of Early Humans

human fossils

(Photo : Jay Stock/Cambridge University) A cast of the 'Nariokotome Boy' (Homo ergaster) skeleton

A new study discovered that our ancestors came in different shapes and sizes as early almost two million years ago.

It's the first study to compare the body size of early humans that lived between 1.5 million and 2.5 million years ago.

Researchers from the Universities of Cambridge and Tubingen (Germany) have developed a method of calculating the height and body mass of early humans by using tiny fossil fragments. The team focused on three species known to have lived in Africa between 1.5 million years and 2.5 million years ago: Homo habilis, Homo rudolfensis and Homo ergaster (the working man).

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"What we're seeing is perhaps the beginning of a unique characteristic of our own species - the origins of diversity," said co-author Jay Stock, a human evolution expert from the University of Cambridge.

If people were about to ask if modern humans are 6 foot tall and 70 kg (150 pounds), new research can that some are but a lot of them aren't. New research suggests that diversification happened really early in human evolution

The variations also appears to be regional. For instance, early humans that lived in South African caves stood 4' 8" tall while those from Kenya's Koobi For were 6 feet tall.

"Basically every textbook on human evolution gives the perspective that one lineage of humans evolved larger bodies before spreading beyond Africa. But the evidence for this story about our origins and the dispersal out of Africa just no longer really fits," Stock said.

The recent study was appeared in the Journal of Human Evolution.

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