It's 47 million years since Ida died; around 25 years since she was excavated from Messel Pit; and just over 2 years since Dr Jørn Hurum acquired her fossil for the University of Oslo Natural History Museum.
On Tuesday 19th May 2009, Ida was finally presented to the world. Unsurprisingly, this extraordinary fossil got attention from news organizations across the globe, and has become a talking point for everyone interested in palaeontology. Google even changed their icon on Wednesday 20th May to a design including an image of Ida!
Even in the early reports of the discovery there has been much debate about Ida's place in the evolution of primates. And not everyone agrees with the scientists' desire that Ida should be seen and understood by everyone, rather than being preserved for scientific study. But Ida has already inspired millions of people to take an interest in our evolution, and in how our world developed over millions of years.
RevealingTheLink.com is continuing to follow on the ongoing story of Ida. You can read some of the coverage through the links below.
The Guardian heralded it as an "extraordinary find" and produced a special pull-out poster of Ida for its readers along with Sir David Attenborough’s response to Ida. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/may/19/ida-fossil-missing-link
The Times reported that "Darwinius masillae illuminates a critical chapter in the human story". http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/science/article6320891.ece
The New York Times ran a piece by biologist PZ Myers who noted that many journalists had incorrectly described Ida as "the missing link", when she is of course one of many links in our evolutionary chain. http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2009/05/darwinius_masillae.php
The Daily Telegraph described Ida as "a stunning fossil" and has a video report of the press conference in New York where Ida was unveiled. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/5351315/Scientists-unveil-stunning-fossil.html
USA Today included quotes from New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg who was at the press conference. http://www.usatoday.com/tech/science/discoveries/2009-05-19-skeleton_N.htm
The Daily Mail ran an extensive piece on the scientific analysis of the fossil. http://www.guardian.co.uk/science/2009/may/19/ida-fossil-missing-link