Press Trust of IndiaOct 26, 2020 10:02:04 IST
Researchers have discovered the proof of a “lost” river that ran by means of the central Thar Desert, close to Bikaner, as early as 172 thousand years in the past, and should have been a life-line to human populations enabling them to inhabit the area.
The findings, revealed within the journal Quaternary Science Reviews, characterize the oldest instantly dated section of river exercise at Nal Quarry within the central Thar Desert.
The examine by researchers from The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History in Germany, Anna University in Tamil Nadu, and IISER Kolkata signifies that Stone Age populations lived in a distinctly completely different Thar Desert panorama than we encounter in the present day.
This proof signifies a river flowed with phases of exercise relationship to roughly as much as 172 thousand years in the past, close by to Bikaner, Rajasthan, which is over 200 kilometres away from the closest fashionable river.
These findings predate proof for exercise in fashionable river programs throughout the Thar Desert in addition to dried up course of the Ghaggar-Hakra River, the researchers mentioned.
The presence of a river working by means of the central Thar Desert would have supplied a life-line to Paleolithic populations, and probably an vital hall for migrations, they mentioned.
The researchers famous that the potential significance of ‘misplaced’ rivers for earlier inhabitants of the Thar Desert have been missed.
“The Thar Desert has a rich prehistory, and we’ve been uncovering a wide range of evidence showing how Stone Age populations not only survived but thrived in these semi-arid landscapes,” mentioned Jimbob Blinkhorn from The Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
“We know how important rivers can be to living in this region, but we have little detail on what river systems were like during key periods of prehistory,” Blinkhorn mentioned.
Studies of satellite tv for pc imagery have proven a dense community of river channels crossing the Thar Desert, in keeping with the researchers.
“These studies can indicate where rivers and streams have flowed in the past, but they can’t tell us when,” defined Professor Hema Achyuthan of Anna University.
“To demonstrate how old such channels are, we had to find evidence on the ground for river activity in the middle of the desert,” Achyuthan mentioned.
The staff studied a deep deposit of river sands and gravels, which had been uncovered by quarrying exercise close to the village of Nal.
The researchers have been in a position to doc completely different phases of river exercise by learning the completely different deposits.
“We immediately saw evidence for a substantial and very active river system from the bottom of the fluvial deposits, which gradually decreased in power through time,” Achyuthan mentioned.
The researchers used a technique known as luminescence relationship to grasp when quartz grains within the river sands have been buried.
The outcomes indicated that the strongest river exercise at Nal occurred at roughly 172 and 140 thousand years in the past, at a time when the monsoon was a lot weaker than in the present day within the area.
River exercise continued on the web site between 95 to 78 thousand years in the past, after which solely restricted proof for the presence of a river on the web site, with proof for a short reactivation of the channel 26 thousand years in the past, the examine discovered.
The river was flowing at its strongest throughout a section of weak monsoonal exercise within the area, and should have been a life-line to human populations enabling them to inhabit the Thar Desert, the researchers mentioned.
The timeframe over which this river was lively additionally overlaps with important adjustments in human behaviour within the area, which have been linked with the earliest expansions of Homo sapiens from Africa into India, they mentioned.
“This river flowed at a critical timeframe for understanding human evolution in the Thar Desert, across South Asia and beyond,” mentioned Blinkhorn.
“This suggests a landscape in which the earliest members of our own species, Homo sapiens, first encountered the monsoons and crossed the Thar Desert may have been very different to the landscape we can see today,” he added.