One of the species that can be related to human is the Sahelanthropus tchadensis sp. nov. with the specimen found in Chad specifically the Djurab Desert and commonly called ‘Toumai.’ The particular specimen was tentatively recognized to exist 6 to 7 million years ago (Brunet et. al. 146). The find had been astonishing according to NPR’s interview with David Kestenbaum who expressed that compared to Lucy with protruding facial anatomy which he referred to as snout, T
oumai or the Sahelanthropus tchadensis sp. nov. already had a flat face which is very similar to the appearance of the humans in the modern time. This is remarkable due to the fact that the fossil is significantly older than the group where Lucy belongs, which is the A. afarensis.
Compared to living apes, Sahelanthropus has ‘smaller canines and apical wear and a full occlusion.’ It is also very distinct from other recorded hominids and related genus. With other related specimens, the S. tchadensis sp. nov. has a tall facial feature with ‘massive brow ridge’ and a short mid-face (Brunet et. al. 147). The braincase indicated a brain with the same size as the Pan but smaller than that of the Gorilla and the Australopithecus (Brunet et. al. 148).
The particular find is significant in the achievement of the clearer view of human evolution and the fact that there more hominids that co-existed in the early part of history, one of which can be the direct ancestor of present day humans.
The Ardipithecus ramidus is another close ancestor of humans on the basis of being classified as a hominid and related to the species Australopithecus anamensis. The manner of bi-pedalism is still needed to be cleared through further discoveries of similar specimens. The brain is small or ‘pint-sized’ (Lemonick and Dorfman part 3 par. 3-6). On the other hand, the Australopithecus anamensis is recognized as a direct decendant of the A. afarensis where Lucy belongs.