2019 Anthropogeny Field Course

Intrepid Anthropogeny Explorers!

During Summer 2019, a small group embarked on a journey to better understand human origins. Visiting important locations throughout the East African Rift, including parts of Ethiopia and Tanzania, our explorers studied fossils, lived with hunter-gatherers, and encountered numerous non-human primates. The following pictures give a glimpse into this journey.

THIS PICTURE COLLAGE: To represent the human characters of the field course, this collage takes the shape of a recently discovered Middle Stone Age obsidian point found at the Fincha Habera rock shelter in the Ethiopian highlands dating to ~47,000 years ago.

Meet the cast of characters! 1 (from left to right): Fiona Stewart (Liverpool John Moores University, Field Course co-faculty, Anthropology), Vanessa Bateman (UC San Diego PhD student, Visual Arts), Stephan Kaufhold (UC San Diego PhD student, Cognitive Science), Arturs Semenuks (UC San Diego PhD student, Cognitive Science), Rafael Nunez UC San Diego Faculty), Pascal Gagneux (UC San Diego, Anthropology, Field Course co-faculty), Linda Nelson (CARTA). 2: Arturs. 3: “Wisdom is like a baobab tree: it takes many to grasp it” (African proverb). 4: Stephan. 5: Pascal. 6: The explorers along with their Hadza hunter-gatherer hosts. 7: Alex Piel (Liverpool John Moores University, Field Course co-faculty, Anthropology). 8: Vanessa. 9: Rafael.

Intrepid Anthropogeny Explorers


Chimpanzees of East Africa!

These snapshots represent just some of the chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) our intrepid explorers encountered. Studying the biology and behavior of our closest living cousins is valuable for their conservation and helps us to understand our ourselves.

THIS PICTURE COLLAGE: It seemed only fitting that the shape for a collage about wild chimpanzees collage should form that of a chimpanzee face.

Chimpanzees of East Africa


Animals of Tanzania!

THIS PICTURE COLLAGE: When you think of large African animals, elephants are most likely to come to mind. So what better way to represent the other, non-primate, animals our fearless explorers found along their journey?

These are just some of the animals encountered in Tanzania. 1: Black chested snake eagle (Circaetus pectoralis); 2: Olive baboons (Papio anubus); 3: African bush elephant (Loxodonta africana); 4: African buffalo (Syncerus caffer); 5; Masai giraffe (Giraffa camelopardalis tippelskirchii); 6: a herd of blue wildebeest (Connochaetes taurinus); 7: Hippopotamus (Hippopotamus amphibius); 8: Grant’s Gazelle (Nanger granti); 9: Spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta).

Animals of Tanzania


Landscapes of Tanzania!

THIS PICTURE COLLAGE: The skyline of Mt. Kilimanjaro.

A small sampling of the ecosystems of Tanzania. 1: Ghideru Ridge (with smoke from burnt Datoga cattle corral); 2: Ngoro-ngoro Crater; 3: Mbulu Highlands (dense farming); 4: Issa Valley River (lush gallery forest); 5; Olduvai Gorge; 6: Ghideru Ridge (Acacia- Commiphora woodland overlooking Yaeda Valley); 7: Serengeti (grassland); 8: Yaeda Valley (baobab tree); 9: Issa Valley Grassland (as seen by a bipedal hominin); 10: Eastern Rift Valley (near
Mto Wa Mbu); 11: Maasai Village of Endulen.

Landscapes of Tanzania