The footprints appear more clearly in this photo, after the surface was cleaned in November 2010 by Gierlinski and his colleagues Grzegorz Niedzwiedzki and Andrzej Boczarowski. (Submitted by Gerard Gierlinski)

“During a Greek holiday in 2002, a Polish paleontologist found what he thinks are the oldest human-like footprints in the world. Thus began a vicious fight over a discovery that raises new questions about our evolution.”

Gierlinski has studied dinosaur tracks and recognized the indentation as a footprint. And there were others. It was around noon, and the sunlight was too harsh to enable him to see the full details of the impressions — but he could immediately tell that they weren’t dinosaur tracks. He took a number of photographs of the imprints (including one with Piechik sitting on the rock). And, crucially, he captured the GPS co-ordinates, so he could find the place again.

Gerard Gierlinski presents a plaster replica of one of the Trachilos footprints during a press conference in Warsaw, Poland, in September 2017. (Tomasz Gzell/EFE/EPA)

The Trachilos footprints are quite small, the largest no more than 23 centimetres long — roughly the size of a women’s size six shoe. The team found that “in the front, the toes are very human-like,” Gierlinski said. But the heel is narrower, like that of a chimpanzee or gorilla. Continue reading

Source: CBC

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