The latest discovery, however, of a female pelvis found near Gona in northern Ethiopia challenges earlier notions of our ancestors. The researchers found that the birth canal of the pelvis, which belonged to a 4 feet 5 inches tall H. erectus woman in her 20s, was more than 30 percent larger than earlier estimates. The woman's hips were even proportionally wider than those of modern humans, suggesting that the larger brain size of a H. erectus child made him less dependent on his mother than a modern day baby. This adaptation would have been useful for survival in the African savannah where the H. erectus lived. While the discovery has raised a lot questions, it could help give scientists greater insight into when humans developed larger birth canals in our evolutionary history.