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Australopithecus boisei skull | by R0b0l
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Australopithecus boisei skull

The discovery of the specimen OH 5 ("Zinj") in 1959, by Mary Leakey, was a watershed in the history of paleoanthropology. The find vindicated Louis and Mary Leakey's work at Olduvai (which had been relatively fruitless over the previous 30 years), which led to renewed research interest in the area, added an important stage in a relatively sparse hominid lineage at the time, and also was important in focusing attention on multidisciplinary research. The fairly complete cranium (sans mandible) was given the species name Zinjanthropus boisei by Louis Leakey, which eventually became known as Australopithecus boisei. However, Zinjanthropus lives on in the well known nickname of OH 5, "Zinj".

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Taken on June 19, 2009