via ANU News, 26 August 2019: More on the discovery of skulls from Alor Island. The paper from the Journal of Human Evolution was featured last month.
Human remains discovered on Alor island in Indonesia offer new insight into human migration through Southeast Asia thousands of years ago, say researchers from The Australian National University (ANU).
Lead researcher Dr Sofía Samper Carro says the two skulls, dated between 12,000 and 17,000 years old, are the oldest human remains ever found in Wallacea – the islands between Java, Papua New Guinea and Australia.
“Although we were aware that modern humans were in Timor and Sulawesi over 40,000 years ago, these remains are the first fossil evidence of modern human presence in Wallacea,” Dr Samper Carro said.
“The area around Alor may have been a sort of ‘highway’, with people moving through these islands, and finally getting to Australia.”