Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Japan returns monkey fossils to Bolivia

Eight rare fossils of an extinct monkey considered the oldest ever found in South America, have been returned to Bolivia by Japan.

The fossils, borrowed by a Japanese researcher 10 years ago, have been in storage at Kyoto University.

The monkey was a small tree-borne primate, Branisella Boliviana, which lived in South America roughly 26.5 million years ago, and grew to just 14 centimetres.

The fossils were found in 1967 at the Salla site about 90 kilometres southeast of La Paz by Yugoslav palaeontologist Leonardo Branisea.

They were returned to Bolivian authorities in a ceremony at Bolivia's foreign ministry.

Story here.

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