Lords of the Flies: New Clues to Ancient Cultures from Very Old Bugs

In Science this week,  I write about some very ingenious research that a new breed of archaeologists–archaeoentomologists, as they like to be known–are carrying out on insect remains recovered from ancient sites.  By poring over fly puparia preserved in an 1800-year-old grave at the Moche site of Huaca de la Luna in Peru,  French archaeoentomologist Jean-Bernard Huchet has completed a CSI-style study of Moche burial practices.  And by studying small weevil-shaped holes in Jomon pots dating to at least 9000 years ago,  Japanese archaeologist Hiroki Obata and his team raise the possibility of very early agriculture in Japan.

The article lies behind a paywall,  unfortunately,  but you can read the short summary here.

Photo:  Painted facade of the Huaca de la Luna, Trujillo, Peru.  Source: Martin St-Amant

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