Of course not only the excavation at Dealul Guran made progress so far. Our survey efforts to find new sites also resulted in much new information. We have been out in the field to visit loess outcrops of different kinds in order to detect remains of Paleolithic human occupation, i.e. lithic artifacts. More than 70 of those locations have been prospected, ranging from only small outcrops on recently constructed terraces to enormous quarries. In cases in which lithics have been found we prepared profiles and sondage pits to track the archaeological horizon from which they erode.

Searching for lithics

Searching for lithics

However, in some instances this approach only raised more questions. At two locations single lithic artifacts have neither been found on the ground below the loess outcrop nor embedded in the sediment itself, but “on” the profile. No further artifacts were observed on the surface, but sondages also did not reveal an in situ archaeological horizon. We suspect the already mentioned ground squirrels – popândău – to be responsible for this situation by carrying single lithics along the long tunnels they use to dig, meaning that the site we are looking for is much further away from the profile where we found the artifact.

Near Ţibrin

Near Ţibrinu

Right now we are exploring a location in the vicinity of Peștera which is rich in surface finds. In this case the geological setting of the site and the processes by which the sediment has formed are of particular interest. Since our team so far only consisted of archaeologist we are glad to have a geologist from Germany with us who arrived yesterday to support our work.

Heavily bioturbated loess

Heavily bioturbated loess

Survey locations in our GIS

Survey locations in our GIS

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