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VIDEO: Helping NHS staff cope in Liberia

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 21:17
The United Nations is calling for more health care workers to join the fight against Ebola in West Africa.
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VIDEO: Victoria 'wins respect' in fashion

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 20:52
Victoria Beckham has topped a list of Britain's top 100 entrepreneurs by Management Today magazine.
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VIDEO: WW1 soldiers remembered in Flanders

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 20:30
Hundreds of soldiers who died in one of World War One's bloodiest battles are remembered at a service in Belgium.
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VIDEO: Stars join Dylan 100th 'readathon'

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 19:40
The work of Swansea-born poet Dylan Thomas is celebrated during a 36 hour-long performance to mark the centenary of his birth.
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VIDEO: Drone rules 'not being enforced'

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 16:43
Strict regulations will need to be introduced before large drones are allowed to appear in the UK's skies, pilots association Balpa has said.
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VIDEO: Wootton Bassett on symbolic war role

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 15:55
Royal Wootton Bassett reflects on its enduring symbolic role in honouring the war dead.
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Highest altitude archaeological sites in the world explored in the Peruvian Andes

Heritage Daily - Mon, 2014-10-27 15:41
University of Calgary archaeologist investigates human capacity for survival in extreme environments.

Research conducted at the highest-altitude Pleistocene archaeological sites yet identified in the world unveils new information on the ability for human survival in extreme environments.

The findings, published in today’s edition of the academic journal Science – co-authored by a team of researchers including University of Calgary archaeologist Sonia Zarillo – were taken from sites in the Pucuncho Basin, located in the Southern Peruvian Andes.

The primary site, Cuncaicha is a rock shelter at 4,480 metres above sea level, with a stone-tool workshop below it. There is also a Pucunchio workshop site where stone tools were made at 4,355 metres above sea level. Climatic conditions in both sites are tough, with factors including low-oxygen, extreme cold and high levels of solar radiation making life in the region challenging for any humans. Yet, the findings show that people were living in these high altitude areas for extended periods of time. Cuncaicha was occupied about 12.4 to 11.5 thousand years ago while the Pucuncho workshop dates to approximately 12.8 to 11.5 thousand years ago.

“We don’t know if people were living there year round, but we strongly suspect they were not just going there to hunt for a few days, then leaving,” says Zarillo. “There were possibly even families living at these sites, because we’ve found evidence of a whole range of activities.”

Archaeological evidence discovered at Cuncaicha includes signs of habitation including human skull fragments, animal remains and stone tools. “Hunters passing through an area will take the meat back to campsites and leave the carcass in the field,” says Zarillo. “In Cuncaicha we found remains representing whole animals, indicating they were living close to where the animals were killed. And the types of stone tools we’ve found are not only hunting tools but also scraping tools used for processing hides to make things like clothing, bags or blankets.”

A popular scientific theory regarding high altitude colonisation implies that people can live in high altitudes until genetic adaptation takes place, like the sort found in Andean people today. Andeans have genetically adapted to their high altitude environment, Zarillo notes. Key differences in the Andean people include higher metabolic rate, larger lung capacity and higher hemoglobin concentrations than the average person, all of which enable them to overcome lack of oxygen.

“Was this adaptation present 12,400 years ago? We don’t know for certain,” says Zarillo. “What we’re demonstrating is that these people either already developed that adaptation, or, it was possible for them to live in these altitudes for extended periods of time regardless. Finding this out is one of the goals of our future research.” Zarillo believes that other sites in the region have the potential for further ground-breaking revelations, partly because they’re extremely well preserved.

“Research really hasn’t been done here up until now, because it’s so remote,” she says. “Our team hiked up to three or four hours to get to these sites. That was a climb carrying all of our gear, camp equipment and food. And it freezes every night. Sometimes it snows. These are incredibly hard sites to access.”

Contributing Source: University of Calgary

Header Image Source: WikiPedia

Categories: General

VIDEO: Actor calls on public to buy poppies

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 15:02
Commuters are being asked to buy poppies to remember members of the armed forces who have died in the line of duty.
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AUDIO: Abuse victim gets no insurance for arson

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 14:04
A mother-of-six from Merseyside has been left homeless after her abusive husband burned her house down.
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VIDEO: The UK's 13 years in Afghanistan

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 13:10
The UK's 13-year military campaign in Afghanistan's Helmand province has come to an end and the last British base, Camp Bastion, has been handed over to Afghan security forces.
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Aviation Archaeology in France

Wessex Archaeology - Mon, 2014-10-27 11:59

Wessex Archaeology has again been helping the RAF Museum’s efforts to conserve and display the unique Battle of Britain Dornier 17 wreck recovered from the Goodwin Sands last year. Working with French and British air crash recovery experts, and with the help of the French local authorities, volunteers from Wessex Archaeology and Belgian company ADEDE catalogued hundreds of parts recovered from a World War II Dornier 17 wreck site on the beach at Berck-sur-Mer, near Boulogne, as well as scouring the beach itself for further parts of the aircraft. The wreckage is now being transported to the RAF Museum’s conservation facility at Cosford, where the Goodwins Dornier is being conserved. Many of the parts recovered from the beach at Berck are missing from the Goodwins Dornier, so they will contribute to what will eventually be a very impressive and important exhibition on the aircraft.  Historical images courtesy of ADEDE   These pictures show the Dornier on the beach at Berck in occupied France, shortly after it crashed. The soldiers milling around are probably part of the German garrison of this stretch of the coastline – Berck was part of Hitler’s ‘Atlantic Wall’, a continuous line of formidable fortifications built on the French coast to oppose the expected Allied invasion. Also pictured is some of the wreckage laid out as it would have been arranged in the aircraft – you can clearly see the bomb bay doors.  By Graham Scott    
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VIDEO: Mike Leigh on his film Mr Turner

BBC test - Mon, 2014-10-27 10:44
The idea for film director Mike Leigh's new film first came to him more than a decade ago, and judging by the initial reaction it was worth the wait.
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Young Archaeologists Club Leader Training Weekend

Wessex Archaeology - Mon, 2014-10-27 09:48

 

This October, Alexandra Grassam, Senior Heritage Consultant at Wessex Archaeology and a volunteer Leader at the Pontefract Branch of the Young Archaeologists’ Club, attended a training weekend for all branch leaders held at the Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site. The Young Archaeologists’ Club (YAC) was setup up over 40 years ago and is currently run by the Council for British Archaeology. There are currently 65 branches based across the UK providing regular practical sessions for young people aged between 8 and 17 who are interested in archaeology.  Alexandra began volunteering as a leader with the Pontefract YAC, who are based at Pontefract Castle in West Yorkshire, in 2010 and along with her fellow volunteers provide monthly sessions aimed at teaching the members all about archaeology and heritage in a fun and readily accessible way.    The training weekends bring together the leaders from the various branches and this time the theme was ‘Industrial Treescapes in Ironbridge Gorge’.  On the Saturday, participants took part in activities with an industrial theme devised and delivered by the Ironbridge YAC branch, which included making suspension bridges strong enough to run a toy train over. On the Saturday night, the leaders were treated to a torch light tour of the Iron Bridge, the world‘s first cast-iron bridge (built in 1779). Sunday morning saw the leaders take to the woods where they were introduced to the Archaeology of Woodlands resource pack. They then had the opportunity to undertake their own woodland survey, providing them with the chance to explore and identify further evidence for the industrial past which the Ironbridge Gorge is famous for.  The aim of the weekend was to provide an opportunity to get all the branch leaders together to share ideas for activities and their experiences as volunteers. All departed from Ironbridge with lots of interesting and exciting ideas for future sessions.  The Archaeology of Woodlands resource pack can be accessed from here: http://www.yac-uk.org/sites/www.yac-uk.org/files/node-files/Are_Trees_Archaeology_YAC_Resource_Pack_2014_lowres.pdf  By Alexandra Grassam  
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Eastbourne Pier, ancient tin mine and shipwreck added to "crucial" at-risk heritage register

24 Hour Museum - Mon, 2014-10-27 00:00
Having suffered a major fire during the summer, the 144-year-old pier has been added to the At-Risk register, with English Heritage predicting a "crucial" few years for heritage sites.
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Happy 100th birthday Dylan Thomas: Five places to discover the poet on the centenary

24 Hour Museum - Mon, 2014-10-27 00:00
Recreations of his Greenwich Village bohemia, art inspired by his birthplace and a chance to see the bedroom he once called smelly - here are five places to meet Dylan Thomas.
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Petrie Museum reveals the hidden secrets of Ancient Egyptian archaeology

24 Hour Museum - Mon, 2014-10-27 00:00
UCL's Petrie Museum has one of the world's best collections of Ancient Egypt artefacts. Culture24 takes a look at some of best hidden archaeological treasures.
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VIDEO: Two by two? How to move 1,700 animals

BBC test - Sun, 2014-10-26 10:54
Wetheriggs Animal Rescue Centre in Cumbria move their 1700 animals to a new home County Durham.
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VIDEO: Georgian delights in Royal costume store

BBC test - Sat, 2014-10-25 23:44
A look at some of the Georgian pieces in the Royal Family's costume store.
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VIDEO: Muslim soldiers' Afghan challenge

BBC test - Sat, 2014-10-25 23:43
BBC Inside Out looks at the experiences of Muslim soldiers fighting for Britain in Afghanistan against an enemy of the same faith.
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VIDEO: Russia turns back clocks for good

BBC test - Sat, 2014-10-25 22:48
Russia prepares to turn back the clocks, moving the country on to "permanent winter time" - a move which has divided opinion
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