How does Homo habilis differ from australopithecines?

1 Answer
Nov 24, 2016

Australopithecines are considered to be the missing link between a fossil line of apes and genus Homo . They had smaller cranial capacity compared to Homo habilis , while the latter had a less protruding jaw.


Most palaeontologists believe that

  1. Homo habilis evolved more than 2 million years ago from more primitive southern apes, i.e. Australopithecines in Africa.

  2. Homo habilis had reduced jaw, made tools like 'stone flakes' and were omnivorous.

Brain volume of Homo habilis was close to 600ml, slightly more than the Australopithicines.

A comparison of their skulls also reveals that the protruding jaw line showed some shortening in genus Homo .

There was also reduction in the prominence of brow-ridge in Homo habilis , and more rounded appearance of zygomatic arch (cheek bone).**

Australopithicines may have collected stones and used these to chase away wild animals, but they were not regular tool makers like Homo habilis (though some scientists believe that A. garhi definitely made some stone tools ).

Both Australopithicines and Homo habilis were able to climb trees, but fore limbs are comparatively shorter in length in H.habilis .