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Make your own two-sided Hominid Mask. Before starting, read the information about Australopithecus aethiopicus.
Directions:
1. Print out the Black Skull. Cut it out. Cut out the eye sockets.
2. Print out the Australopithecus aethiopicus reconstruction picture. Cut it out. If you are not using a color printer, you may want to add color to your mask. Color lightly with crayons. (Remember, no one really knows what the color of the skin of aethiopicus was. Use your imagination.)
3. Punch small hole in the eyes to see through.
4. Place the skull behind the reconstruction picture with blank sides together. Line up the eyes of the picture and the eye sockets of the skull. Tape the two together.
5. Add small holes to the sides of your mask.
6. With this two sided-mask, you can wear it with the skull showing, or turn it around and show the reconstruction.

The Black Skull and Australopithecus aethiopicus
Discovered near Lake Turkana, Africa, in 1985 by Richard Leakey, and reconstructed by Alan Walker, the Black Skull (KNM-WT 17000) is the most diagnostic specimen of Australopithecus aethiopicus ever found. It is referred to as the Black Skull because the manganese in the soil turned the bones black during mineralization. It has been dated to 2.5 million years ago.

This picture is of a facial reconstruction of the Black Skull done by Bill Munns. The Black Skull is really fascinating because it shares early Australopithecus afarensis traits with later Australopithecus robustus traits, making it an unusual and important find. Because of its distinct morphology, the Black Skull is considered to be the earliest robust species to date. Like other australopithecines, A. aethiopicus may have had hominid characteristics such as the ability to walk bipedally.

Activity developed by Trisha Biers and Kathleen Hamilton