The Pleistocene is sometimes called the Ice Age, but ice was as rare 2 million years ago as it is today in the Turkana Basin. Instead the glaciers in the north caused the deserts and arid grasslands to expand as the ice advanced and the expansion of the forests when the ice retreated. Our early bipedal ancestors in the genus Australopithecus were plunged into this climatic nightmare and emerged transformed.
I am a graduate student in Anatomical Sciences at Stony Brook University and a Turkana Basin Fellow. I study the evolution of a group of extinct carnivorous mammals called creodonts, a group of mammals that once filled all the carnivorous niches of Africa before the continent was invaded by modern carnivores like dogs, cats, and hyenas. I was one of the teaching assistants for the Spring 2013 Field School. I'm originally from outside Cincinnati, Ohio and I did my undergraduate work at The Ohio State University where I studied Geology and Anthropology. I've done fieldwork in North Dakota, Utah, Madagascar, Egypt, Germany, Kenya and Oman.