Researchers exploring the sea off southeast Alaska discovered a fish trap made of stone believed to be at least 11,100 years old, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced on Thursday, November 3.
According to the NOAA, a team of scientists from Sealaska Heritage Institute and NOAA Ocean Exploration surveyed an “underwater region” of southern southeast Alaska in May and discovered what the NOAA said might be the “oldest stone fish weir ever found in the world.”
The fish trap’s existence had been confirmed earlier this year by academics and a robotics company called Sunfish Inc, which specializes in undersea exploration and inspection, the NOAA said.
Prior to this discovery, the oldest known weirs dated from 7,500 to 8,000 years ago, the NOAA said.
Dr Kelly Monteleone (co-PI), an archaeologist at the University of Calgary who piloted the underwater craft on the exploration journey that found the weir, said, “The entire vessel was bouncing with excitement when we realized it was indeed a weir. Personally, I felt relief after a decade of saying this was a weir. Finally confirming the location was satisfying and exhilarating.” Credit: NOAA Research via Storyful