Homo erectus: Toolmaker and hunter
Homo erectus was a much more skilled tool-maker than previous ape-men. Their stones were carefully shaped with a tapering point at one end and a sharp edge on either side, and were of a size that fitted neatly into the hand. Evidence of one of his successful hunts has been unearthed at Olorgesailie in southwest Kenya. In one small area, lie the broken and dismembered skeletons of a giant baboonspecies now extinct and with these bones are the remains are hundreds of chipped stones and several thousand rough cobbles. All are of rock that does not occur naturally within 30 kilometres of the site. The fact that the stones come from a distant site suggests that the hunts were premeditated and that the hunters had armed themselves long before they found their prey. Baboons, even the smaller living species (Papiospecies), are very formidable creatures with powerful fanged jaws. Few people today, without fire-arms, would be prepared to tackle them. The numbers killed at Olorgesailie suggest that such hunts were regular team operations demanding considerable skill. Homo erectus was clearly, a very formidable hunter.