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Ledi-Geraru Research Project

Ledi-Geraru

The Ledi-Geraru research area is positioned between the Awash and Ledi River basins in northeastern Ethiopia. The fossil exposures are found directly east and somewhat north of the Hadar site. In the next field season, we will begin to collect fossils in an effort to expand coverage into the later time periods that we have identified.

The Ledi-Geraru research area is positioned between the Awash and Ledi River basins in northeastern Ethiopia. The fossil exposures are found directly east and somewhat north of the Hadar site. Early research in this area was accomplished by the International Afar Research Expedition (IARE) from 1972 through 1974.

The first field expedition to the Ledi-Geraru research area (2002) provided sufficient geologic and paleoecological information to determine the approximate temporal and depositional settings of the western part of the region. Results include the recovery of hominin fossils, preliminary identification of the time range of the deposits and evidence of the center of Paleolake Hadar.

In an effort to understand the depositional environments and fossil distribution in a larger area, subsequent field seasons have been spent surveying the central and eastern parts of the region for fossil exposures and to obtain geological data. This consisted of mapping fossiliferous localities, collecting various types of geological samples for dating with either Ar/Ar or paleomagnetic means and understanding the stratigraphy.

We are now formulating the next field season when we will begin to collect fossils in an effort to expand coverage into the later time periods that we have identified.

Publications: 
Dupont-Nivet, G., Sier, M., Campisano, C.J., Arrowsmith, J.R., DiMaggio, E.N., Reed, K.E., Lockwood, C.A., Franke, C. & Hüsing, S. (in press) Magnetostratigraphy of the eastern Hadar Basin (Ledi-Geraru research area, Ethiopia) and implications for hominin paleoenvironments. The Geological Context of Human Evolution in the Horn of Africa (J. Quade and J. Wynn, Eds.). A Geological Society of America Special Paper.

DiMaggio, E.N., Campisano, C.J., Arrowsmith, J.R., Reed, K.E., Swisher III, C.C. & Lockwood, C.A. (in press). Correlation and stratigraphy of the BKT-2 volcanic complex in west-central Afar, Ethiopia. The Geological Context of Human Evolution in the Horn of Africa (J. Quade and J. Wynn, Eds.). A Geological Society of America Special Paper.

Roman, D., Campisano, C.J., Quade, J., DiMaggio, E.N., Arrowsmith, J.R. & Feibel, C.S. (in press). Composite Tephrostratigraphy of the Dikika, Gona, Hadar, and Ledi-Geraru project areas, northern Awash, Ethiopia. The Geological Context of Human Evolution in the Horn of Africa (J. Quade and J. Wynn, Eds.). A Geological Society of America Special Paper.

Kaye Reed, Arizona State University School of Human Evolution and Social Change/Institute of Human Origins, Co-Director (Paleontology)
Ramon Arrowsmith, Arizona State University School of Earth and Space Exploration, Co-Director (Geology)
Christopher Campisano, Arizona State University School of Human Evolution and Social Change/Institute of Human Origins (Paleoanthropology and Geology)
Lars Werdelin (Paleontology)
Guillaume Dupont-Nivet (Geology)
Erin DiMaggio, Arizona State University School of Earth and Space Exploration Graduate Student (Geology)