MUD WASP NESTS TO DATE ANCIENT ABORIGINAL KIMBERLEY ROCK ART

Community & Indigenous radio interview with Damien Finch, PhD student from the School of Earth Sciences at the University of Melbourne and Ian Waina, Kwini man from Kalumburu community

 

Damien Finch with TO Michael David Morlumbun

 

 

The Kimberley region in Western Australia is a vast gallery of ancient Aboriginal rock art, containing tens of thousands of rock art sites that portray the several distinct artistic periods.

The second oldest of these periods, the Gwion Gwion period, is characterised by its painted depiction of elongated humans adorned with elaborate decorations.

Traditional methods of dating, like radiocarbon dating, were unable to be used due to the composition of the paint.

However, a recent study has overcome these issues by radiocarbon dating the mud wasp nests that lay over-top and underneath the rock paintings to establish that the Gwion Gwion art period is around 12,000 years old.

Related New Links

ABC News at Noon – The segment is ~4 min long and starts around 44 minutes
https://iview.abc.net.au/show/abc-news-at-noon

ABC News
https://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2020-02-06/gwion-rock-art-in-kimberley-dated-using-wasp-nests/11924584

ScienceMag.org
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/mysterious-australian-rock-art-may-depict-chaos-following-rising-seas

BBC News
https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-51378317

ANSTO
https://www.ansto.gov.au/news/dating-aboriginal-rock-art-using-mudwasp-nests

PHYS.ORG
https://phys.org/news/2020-02-wasp-date-ancient-kimberley-art.html

Science News
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/wasp-nests-key-dating-12000-year-old-aboriginal-rock-art

Science Daily
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200206102717.htm

Science Podcast (AAAS) interview with Sarah Crespi
https://www.sciencemag.org/podcast/fighting-cancer-crispr-and-dating-ancient-rock-art-wasp-nests

BBC Radio 5 Live “Up all night” – a ~10 minute live radio talk with Nick Garnett

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