Last week, the fossil skeleton known as “Ida” was introduced to the world with a fanfare rarely seen in the scientific community. Touted by publicists as the find “that will change everything”, Ida’s arrival on the world scene has provoked a mixed reaction from researchers and commentators.

Ida was a lemur-like mammal that roamed central Europe about 47 million years ago. She died at a relatively young age of 9 months, on the banks of the volcanic Lake Messel in modern-day Germany. The circumstances of her death play a large part in her current fame – researchers involved in the find More >