Whale fossil, 17 million years old, provides first exact date for East Africa’s puzzling uplift

17 marzo 2015

A 17 million-year-old whale fossil provides the first exact date for East Africa’s puzzling tectonic uplift, says paleontologists who rediscovered the fossil. The uplift and aridification associated with the Great Rift Valley of East Africa caused changes in vegetation and have been considered a driver of human evolution. Understanding how, when, and under what conditions the fossil whale was stranded far inland in Kenya now sheds light on the uplift’s timing and starting elevation.