Researchers discover more mysterious biomorphs in Peru’s Nazca lineages

  • Japanese explorers and Peruvian archaeologists have discovered new geoglyphs in the Nazca Lines.
  • 168 geoglyphs depicting cats, killer whales and snakes have been found on Peru’s South Pacific coast.
  • The carved figures, averaging 6 to 19 feet in length, date from between 100 B.C. and 300 AD

After two years of drone scanning Peru’s southern Pacific coast, taking aerial photographs and conducting field studies, researchers and archaeologists have discovered 168 additional geoglyphs in the mysterious Nazca Lines.

The massive, carved trenches — attributed by some extraterrestrials — are the latest addition to over 800 straight lines, 300 geometric figures, and 70 animal and plant designs also called biomorphs, according to National Geographic.

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University, which revealed 168 new designs in this undated photo published on of the UNESCO World Heritage Site on the southern Pacific coast of Peru discovered December 19, 2022 by Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE WAS SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY, NO RESALE.  NO ARCHIVES

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University.

Yamagata University/Reuters



The recently discovered carved figures average between 6 and 19 feet in length and include outlined figures of cats, snakes, orca whales and alpacas, according to a statement from Yamagata University, which led the research. Previously known lines are up to 1,200 feet long.

Researchers from Yamagata University, who carried out the mapping with the help of Peruvian archaeologists, estimate that the geoglyphs were made between 100 BC and 100 BC.

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University, which revealed 168 new designs in this undated photo published on of the UNESCO World Heritage Site on the southern Pacific coast of Peru discovered December 19, 2022 by Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE WAS SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY, NO RESALE.  NO ARCHIVES

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University.

Yamagata University/Reuters



Yamagata University researchers will collaborate with IBM’s TJ Watson Research Center to conduct an AI-based study of the distribution patterns of the latest Nazca geoglyphs, Art News reported.

The AI-based study is an extension of previous research by the scientists, which revealed 142 additional Nazca formations – including images of birds, monkeys, fish, snakes and foxes.

“The discovery of 41 geoglyphs in this area was previously announced by Yamagata University in 2014 and 2015, leading to the creation of an archaeological park in 2017 in collaboration with the Peruvian Ministry of Culture to protect them,” the statement said Yamagata University Announcing the Discovery. “With this discovery, a total of 77 geoglyphs are now known, concentrated in this archaeological park.

Luis Jaime Castillo, a Peruvian archaeologist, told The Guardian that he suspects only 5% of all existing Nazca Lines have been found so far.

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University, which revealed 168 new designs in this undated photo published on of the UNESCO World Heritage Site on the southern Pacific coast of Peru discovered December 19, 2022 by Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE WAS SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY, NO RESALE.  NO ARCHIVES

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University.

Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS



Although the reason for the creation of the Nazca Lines remains unknown, some archaeologists believe the shapes had a sacred purpose or were early irrigation lines, while local guides believe the lines may be related to water sources or maps of the region.

The methods used to create the lines, first officially studied in 1926 and barely visible from the ground due to their size, also remain a mystery to researchers.

“These geoglyphs were created by removing black stones from the surface of the earth to reveal an area of ​​white sand beneath,” the Yamagata University statement said, although it is unclear how the black stone was removed.

In pop culture, the mysterious figures have raised questions about whether they were created by extraterrestrial visitors or as landing strips for ancient astronauts — particularly because they are only recognizable from the air and human creators would have had no way of seeing their work with limited technology from 2,000 years ago.

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University, which revealed 168 new designs in this undated photo published on of the UNESCO World Heritage Site on the southern Pacific coast of Peru discovered December 19, 2022 by Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS THIS IMAGE WAS SUPPLIED BY A THIRD PARTY, NO RESALE.  NO ARCHIVES

A general view shows one of the images of the Nazca Lines found in the Nazca Plain as part of research led by Peruvian and Japanese researchers from Yamagata University.

Yamagata University/Handout via REUTERS



Ongoing geoglyph research is trying to uncover a pattern for the lines and has established boundaries for the UNESCO World Heritage site on Peru’s southern coast, which Reuters says faces threats from urban and economic developments.

“Some geoglyphs are in danger of being destroyed due to the recent expansion of mining workshops in the archaeological park,” Masato Sakai, a Yamagata University professor who led the study, told Reuters.

Yamagata University officials did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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