Earliest evidence of humans in Australia
Niche heritage consultant Xavier Carah is an experienced field archaeologist, with particular skills in survey, excavation and community liaison for Indigenous cultural heritage projects.
Queensland-based Xavier is the co-author of a new research article recently published in the journal Nature, Human occupation of northern Australia by 65,000 years ago.
The research reports on the results of excavations conducted in northern Australia by University of Queensland’s Dr Chris Clarkson and his team.
Discoveries from research at a rock shelter called Madjedbebe, 300 km east of Darwin, confirm that human occupation at the site dates back to at least 65,000 years ago – up to 18,000 years earlier than previously thought.
Xavier was involved in the 2012 excavation of the Madjedbebe and was responsible for the recovery of archaeobotanical remains from the site. Sediment was sampled throughout the excavation and processed with a flotation tank (pictured) to recovery the carbonised botanical remains. This approach recovered botanics from the earliest layers of human occupation. Xavier’s subsequent PhD research focused on the analysis of wood charcoal and an exploration of fuel wood use and management at the site and in the surrounding landscape.
Access the full research article, published on Nature.com, here: Human occupation of northern Australia by 65,000 years ago.
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