An ancient hunting site has been found under Lake Huron, which contains the most complex set of ancient structures ever found under the Great Lakes. The site is marked with an array of linear stone lanes and V-shaped structures.
University of Michigan researchers believe the roughly 9,000-year-old-structure helped natives corral caribou herds migrating across what was then an exposed land-corridor the so-called Alpena-Amberley Ridge connecting northeast Michigan to southern Ontario.
The site is now covered by 120 feet of water, but at the time, was exposed due to dry conditions of the last ice age.
Using underwater sonar and a remotely operated vehicle (ROV) equipped with a video camera, the researchers found two parallel lines of stones that create a 26-foot-wide and 98 foot-long northwesterly-oriented lane that ends in a natural cul-de-sac.
The Lake Huron hunting team also found what appear to be V-shaped hunting blinds oriented to the southeast, and a rectangular area that may have been used as a meat cache, according to the researchers.
The entire feature spans an area of about 92 feet by 330 feet, the team reports.
Scuba-trained members of the team investigated the site, and found 11 chipped stone flakes nearby the lanes, providing further evidence that the area was used as a hunting ground.
The Lake Huron hunting researchers think the flakes would have been used to repair and maintain stone tools.
“The fact that all of the migrations tend to converge on these two locations … would have provided predictability for ancient hunters, which is why we see so many structures located in these spots,” study co-author John O’Shea, a researcher at the Museum of Anthropological Archaeology at the University of Michigan, told Live Science.