November 11, 2019
Workers at a location in Tultepec, north of Mexico City, found a cache of mammoth bones and notified INAH. INAH have worked for 10 months at the site and have found hundreds of mammoth bones, and realized this was a pre-historic hunting site. They found two man made traps where the mammoths were driven to their deaths by ancient hunters. The pit dates to 15,000 BCE, thus making this discovery the earliest close to proven Pre-Clovis site in the Americas.
(My note: There are sites claiming to be older in the Americas, but no human-animal interaction that could lend credence to the dates. And these sites rely on stone tools and stratigraphy analysis for their proposed dates. At this time, only Monte Verde, Chile and Paisley Cave, Oregon have proven Human DNA, and/or other human made materials along with tools at the sites, that are proven dated to 13,500 BCE. This site shows humans interacting with animals at the proposed date of 15,000 BCE).
INAH found 824 mammoth bones, eight skulls, five jaws, 179 ribs. These belonged to 14 mammoths. Camel and horse bones were found here as well. Groups of hunters numbering 20-30 steered one mammoth at a time into the pit, possible with torches and branches. The mammoths would be killed once in the traps. There are signs of butchering, and one bone looks to having been used as a polishing tool. The tongues of the mammoths were consumed as food.
Only right shoulder bones were found. Perhaps the left shoulder bones were used in ritual. One mammoth was laid out in a symbolic formation.
INAH will be looking for additional traps in the area.
The 15,000 BCE date has to be reviewed and published in a peer reviewed journal.
Smithsonian Magazine has the report here;
Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis News on Tumblr