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a statement about a phenomenon that is objectively verified, and thus, considered to be true.
facultative bipedalism

when an animal assumes a form of bipedalism on a temporary basis in order to perform a particular action.

in taxonomic classifications, all members of the same Genus but only certain members of an Order.
a break in the earth's lithosphere (i.e., crust).
animal remains.
faunal correlation
a method of relative dating that compares the faunal remains (i.e., fossils) located in one strata with faunal remains in other strata and assigning similar ages to the strata that contains similar fossils.
stage in human development that lasts between 10 weeks after conception until birth.
the measurement of a genotype's reproductive success.
fitness (Darwinian)

the ability to survive and reproduce in a particular environment.

fitness (Inclusive)

a cumulative measurement of an individual, meaning the relative number of fertile offspring produced per unit of time. The individual in a population with the most surviving fertile offspring has a relative fitness of 1.0; individuals with no offspring have a fitness of zero. Fitness scores of other individuals are the ratio of the number of their surviving fertile offspring to the maximum number from any individual.

a fragment of stone generated during the reduction process of making a stone tool. Flakes may be primary (where one surface is entirely cortex), secondary (with traces of cortex), or tertiary (no cortex, came entirely from the inner core).

the movement that results in the angle between skeletal elements getting smaller. Different muscles act to flex or extend different skeletal elements. See also extension.

A raw material found in irregular formations through sedimentary deposits used to make lithic tools.
describing, or about, rivers or river systems.

a dietary category that describes animals that specialize in eating primarily foliage, such as leaves.

a hole or opening in a tissue, such as bone; usually accommodates the passage of a blood vessel or a nerve.
foramen magnum
the large hole in the occipital bone that allows for the passage of the spinal cord to the brain. The placement of the foramen magnum in the skull is an indication of bipedal or quadrupedal behavior.
a topographical feature that occurs naturally, such as a hill.
formed when hard elements of a skeleton, such as shells, teeth and bones, are quickly buried by sand or mud. Over the thousands or millions of years these elements are buried, the organic components of the skeleton are replaced with minerals. The transition from bone to stone forms a fossil.
the process of organic material transforming into a fossil. This includes the burial and preservation processes.
founder effect
when a portion of a population is geographically isolated, and due to the small sample size subsequent generations no longer represent the genetic diversity seen in the original population.
a break or crack in a bone or cartilage.
Frankfurt plane

the anatomical position of the skull for bipeds; a plane defined by the most inferior points on the anterior margins of the orbit and the middle points of the upper part of the external auditory meatus (porion); also called the Plane of Virchow.


a dietary category that describes animals that specialize in eating primarily fruit.

functional morphology

the study of the relationship between an organism's lifestyle and its anatomy.