October 24, 2014

A 10,800 BCE campsite found in the Peruvian Andes

A National Geographic financed team has published a report in the peer reviewed journal Science that evidence of human activity in the high Peruvian Andes has been found in an oasis like region in this high desert area. An ancient campsite was found and two obsidian quarry sites, as well as stone tools and arrowheads. Radiocarbon dating places this site at 10,800 BCE. Vicunas and Llamas were the hunting draw for these folks, who came to this camp seasonally. Oxygen levels at this site are only 60% normal strength. This reveals that these people did not need long time periods to adjust to these altitudes, and that humans spread across South American rapidly. Ice Age glaciers disappeared in this basin at 13,000 BCE.

National Geographic has the report here with photos;
http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2014/10/141023-paleo-indians-migration-pucuncho-basin-andes-south-america-archaeology/

And the Boston Globe has more details here;
http://www.bostonglobe.com/news/science/2014/10/23/maine-researchers-find-oldest-highest-human-settlement-andes/3GALsnNYQlior0I8WH8k1H/story.html

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