Newly Discovered Indonesian Caves Show Evidence of Habitation

February 4, 2015 / Indonesia, Asia
Sentani Lake near Jayapura, the provincial capital of Papua, Indonesia.

Sentani Lake near Jayapura, the provincial capital of Papua, Indonesia. Photo by Edwin Yepese/flickr

Artifacts found in three new caves discovered in the Karst hilly areas of Lake Sentani in Indonesia’s Papua province suggest habitation by prehistoric people.

Representatives from the The Archaeology Office of Jayapura, told Antara News over the weekend that the three caves are called Rukhabulu Awabu, Ifeli-feli and Ceruk Reugable.

Inside the caves were Neolithic age pottery, fresh and saltwater mollusc shells as well as animal bones. Most interesting is the discovery of the saltwater mollusc shells, which indicate that the past inhabitants of Rukhabulu Awabu and Ceruk Reugable caves were in contact with others who were living in the coastal areas of the Youtefa Bay.

The findings of the marine mollusc shells in the Reugable site and Cave Rukhabulu Awabhu, illustrate that in the past the inhabitants of the two sites have been consuming marine mollusks. This indicates that the prehistoric men have already had communications with each other as proven by the findings of the sea mollusc shells in the caves. Hari Suroto, Jayapura Archaeology Office

Further evidence of communication with others is the pottery which—found blackened from being used to cook over a fire—could not have been made from the soil in and around the caves.

Prehistoric caves found in Papua [Antara News]

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