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Ancient Human Footprints Found in White Sands National Park Raise Questions

Many people usually imagine mammoths, dinosaurs, and ancient beasts when considering fossils. However, a large majority of people miss an important category: human fossils. A recent discovery was made in White Sands National Park in New Mexico.

Many people down by the White Sands National Park have been buzzing with excitement because of the discovery of the human footprints. They were found and began to be studied in 2021. According to archaeologists, these fossils may be one of the oldest fossils that affirm humans originating from North America. Archeologists have been able to strengthen this argument since recent data shows that footprints have been there for 21,000 to 23,000 years ago. Yet some archeologists wonder if these fossils may really be from our ancestors from the Americas.

These human fossils may not be as old as they seem to be. Archeologists and scientists debate whether ancient seeds of aquatic plant life may have absorbed old carbon, making their original reported age invalid. In the process of finding fossils, they also found a big cluster of quartz grains and conifer pollen, which they used to confirm the original statement.

Scientists wonder whether some of the fossils came from what is now Russia. Researchers believe that after sea levels decreased, Alaska and Russia had a land bridge connecting them 15,000 years ago, but the older data suggest humans were already in America. “This is a subject that’s always been controversial because it's so significant. It's about how we understand the last chapter of the peoples of the world,” said Thomas Urban, an archaeologist, implying that archeologists are still finding the dawning of human civilization in the Americas.

Fossils are a very interesting topic to research and learn about. They are also very fascinating to study and see how our ancestors lived. Continued research in this area will give more insight into life during the past and the people that used to inhabit these lands.

[Source: Associated Press]

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