The single fossil finger bone of Homo sapiens – pictured from various angles – was found at Al Wusta. Ian Cartwright/Handout via REUTERS
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A fossil finger bone dating back about 90,000 years that was unearthed in Saudi Arabia's Nefud Desert points to what scientists are calling a new understanding of how our species came out of Africa en route to colonizing the world. Researchers said Monday the middle bone of an adult's middle finger found at site called Al-Wusta is the oldest Homo sapiens fossil outside of Africa and the immediately adjacent eastern Mediterranean Levant region, and the first ancient human fossil from the Arabian Peninsula.While the Nefud Desert is now a veritable sea of sand, it was hospitable when this individual lived – a grasslands teeming with wildlife alongside a freshwater lake.Our species first appeared in Africa roughly 300,000 years ago.
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