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Scientists ‘stumped’ by discovery of human-like species in South African caves

Scientists in South Africa have discovered the remains of a previously unknown human-like species thought to have lived more than three million years ago.

And it’s where they were discovered that has them stumped.

Professor Paul Dirks from James Cook University spoke to Ross and John from South Africa about the possible new addition the family tree.

‘This discovery is very significant it’s quite unique in terms of the mere quantity of humanoid bones discovered,’ he said.

‘We haven’t got a date for the fossils yet.

‘It’s been quite challenging to get a date out of these fossils.

‘At this point in time we can’t say how old they are, they look like very early humans.’

The bones were discovered in a burial system, deep in a cave system in South Africa, which has stumped scientists.

‘The peculiar thing with this particular find is that the chamber in which they were found is really difficult to access and it really requires some serious climbing up and down deep into the cave system,’ he said.

‘It’s very strange context we’ve been sort of scratching our heads over this.

‘We’ve suggested it may be something like purposeful disposal of bodies.’

LISTEN: Professor Paul Dirks on 3AW Breakfast