News of the WeekPaleoanthropology

Still Seeking Peking Man

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Science  03 Jul 2009:
Vol. 325, Issue 5936, pp. 22-23
DOI: 10.1126/science.325_22b

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Last week, work commenced on a new excavation here in the cave-riddled hills of Zhoukoudian, 50 kilometers southwest of Beijing, where early last century scientists discovered Peking Man: a trove of Homo erectus fossils as well as rudimentary tools and the bones of woolly rhinos and other Ice Age fauna. The new dig aims to both stabilize the iconic site and unearth evidence that could influence simmering debates, such as whether Peking Man was a hunter or a scavenger and whether the hominin tamed fire.