Friday, October 15, 2010

Under the Sea Near Wales

A couple of posts ago I mentioned that the seas have risen over the millennia. Not making it up; as the glaciers receded and (now) the ice caps melt, more water is released into our oceans.

So historical sites are submerged.

An article from Wales Online tells how archaeologist Dr Andrew Petersen (pictured, looking quite rakish and Indiana Jones-ish) is searching off shore near the coast of Wales. Specifically, he hopes to find fish traps made of stone or willow, which may have been put in place a Long, Long Time Ago. Saber-tooth tiger era Long Ago. And in the process of seeking these fish traps--which are quite large--Dr. Petersen will also keep an eye open for things like fossilized forests that may tell us how people lived in the area many thousands of years ago.

Dr. Petersen did similar oceanic surveying in Qatar recently, and found an underwater mosque, fort, and homes. (Story here or BBC story-with-pictures here) So heck, who knows what may turn up?

Dr. Martin Bates, an environmental archaeologist, states in the Wales Online article that the current sea level was established 6000 years ago. "We are going to use multi-beam sonar surveys to look beneath the sand banks and see what is under the sea bed above the rock, that relates to the last Ice Age. This new science is still in its infancy.”

Exciting...makes me want to go back to school and learn all this new stuff. Except that there's probably tons of math and chemistry involved. More news will no doubt be forthcoming, since a Nations of the Sea Conference took place at the National Museum of Wales in Cardiff three weeks ago, when this story appeared.

No comments: