Primates

, Volume 45, Issue 2, pp 97–104

Preliminary analysis of Nacholapithecus scapula and clavicle from Nachola, Kenya

Authors

    • Département d’Histoire de la Terre du Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, UMR 5143 et PICS 1048CNRS
  • Masato Nakatsukasa
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
  • Yutaka Kunimatsu
    • Primate Research InstituteKyoto University
  • Yoshihiko Nakano
    • Department of Biological Anthropology, Graduate School of Human SciencesOsaka University
  • Tomo Takano
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
  • Hiroshi Tsujikawa
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
  • Daisuke Shimizu
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
  • Miyuki Kagaya
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
  • Hidemi Ishida
    • Laboratory of Physical Anthropology, Graduate School of ScienceKyoto University
Original Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10329-003-0073-5

Cite this article as:
Senut, B., Nakatsukasa, M., Kunimatsu, Y. et al. Primates (2004) 45: 97. doi:10.1007/s10329-003-0073-5

Abstract

The Miocene ape Nacholapithecus is known from rather complete skeletons; some of them preserve the shoulder joint, identified by three scapulae and one clavicle. Comparisons made with other Miocene and living apes (Proconsul, Equatorius, Ugandapithecus) suggest that the mobility of the scapulohumeral joint was important, and scapular features such as the morphology and position of the spine and the morphology of the acromion and axillary border resemble those of climbing arboreal primates except for chimpanzees, gorillas, or orang-utans. From the size of the scapula (male Nasalis size), it is clear that the animal is smaller than an adult chimpanzee, but the clavicle is almost as relatively long as those of chimpanzees. Some features closer to colobine morphology reinforce the hypothesis that Nacholapithecus was probably a good climber and was definitely adapted for an arboreal life.

Keywords

Scapula Clavicle Middle Miocene Nacholapithecus Kenya

Copyright information

© Japan Monkey Centre and Springer-Verlag 2004