Parts of South America may once have been under the sea - as recently as 10,000 years ago?

17 Aug 2010

Parts of South America may once have been below sea level, as recently as 10,000 years ago. There is a possibility of course that it may have been below sea level in the early Holocene as we have noted previously that there is evidence of uplift, or readjustment of the ocean's geoid, as recently as 8000 and 5000 years ago. Go to as archaeologists have unearthed the remains of a whale, a giant porcupine, and a rock fish - all of which could be around 10,000 years old. Also, pottery from around 5000 years ago, associated with a midden, was found in Guyana - in the same area. Hence, it was dry land at that time. Explaining how the fish could have reached so far inland, archaeologists say tides could have been responsible (a tsunami, perhaps). Or it could be that (in the Late Pleistocene) this particular region was below sea level (or words to that effect). In fact, this is actually a regurgitation of an idea suggested by the late archaeologist Dr Denis Williams (of Guyana). Presumably the outside world wasn't paying attention and it has taken the arrival of a US archaeologist to revive the idea.

In addition, there is some evidence that in the early Holocene (or Late Pleistocene) large parts of what is now Guyana were not thick tropical forest, as now, but open savannah. This type of habitat was perfect for seasonal human activity - a general pattern around the coasts of the southern Caribbean.

The article ends by saying 75 per cent of Guyana is unexplored - as a result of the tropical forest.