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August 06, 2003

ReDating human migration to North America

An archaeological site in Siberia -- long thought to be the original jumping off point for crossing the Bering land bridge into North America -- is actually much younger than previously believed, shaking the theory that the first Americans migrated overland during the final cold snap of the last great ice age.

Using radiocarbon dating, scientists found that the Ushki site, the remains of a community of hunters clustered around Ushki Lake in northeastern Russia, appears to be only about 13,000 years old -- 4,000 years younger than originally thought.

The Ushki site presents problems for established views of human migration to North America but would appear to be consistent with new genetic models suggesting a more recent migration in the 13,000 year range. Dates attributed to Clovis, Broken Mammoth and other sites may now need to be revisited.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at August 6, 2003 10:49 AM