Humans first arrived in Polynesia nearly 3000 years ago
Scientists using high-precision techniques have estimated that the first human settlers arrived in Polynesia nearly 3000 years ago.
Polynesia was one of the last places on Earth to be settled by humans.
The research by David Burley and colleagues from Simon Fraser University, Canada, revealed that the first human settlers lived in a founder colony on the islands of Tonga between 2830 to 2846 years ago.
To arrive at this precise figure, the researchers used a high-precision technique to estimate the age of coral files that early settlers used to sculpt and smooth wood and shell surfaces.
"This degree of precision is impossible using radiocarbon and other dating techniques. It provides significant new opportunities for our understanding of the exploration and settlement of the far distant islands spread across the South Pacific," Dr. Burley stated.
The research has been published in the open access journal PLOS ONE.