Numerous finds from the earliest pyramid in South America

Among the finds from the site of Huaca Prieta located in coastal Peru are food remains, stone tools, and other cultural objects that indicate that the people inhabiting the area between 15000-8000 years ago were more advanced than archaeologists had previously imagined.

The site of Huaca Prieta (by Tom Dillehay)

Archaeologists believe that the ancient culture at Peru’s coast had developed efficient techniques to extract resources from the sea early on. The findings suggest that early populations at Huaca Prieta used a wide range of strategies to get food, including trapping animals and trading with others for resources. The latter is evident from the fact that researchers found remains of avocados, beans and possibly cultivated squash and chilli peppers. Since these species mostly grew in the interior valley and western slopes of the Andes, it is likely that trade exchanges were taking place early on between coastal populations and interior valley populations. The archaeologists note that no bifacial stone tools, harpoons, or fishhooks were recovered at the site, even though these people did collect and eat maritime foods. Thus, they hypothesise that maritime resources were gathered by trapping with nets or clubbing. The diverse strategies they used to get food would have minimised threats posed by potential climatic shifts.

Simple stone tools from the site (by Tom Dillehay)

(after International Business Times & Tom Dillehay)

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