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Ancient dental plaque reveals Easter Islanders' diet

Dec 16, 2014    

Wellington, Dec 16 (IANS) A University of Otago research team from New Zealand analysing dental calculus (hardened plaque) from ancient teeth is helping resolve the question of what plant foods Easter Islanders relied on before European contact.Known to its Polynesian inhabitants as Rapa Nui, Easter Island is thought to have been colonised around the 13th century. Earlier, it was thought that the palm may have been the staple plant food for Rapa Nui's population over several centuries.But this was not substantiated by any other archaeological or ethnohistoric evidenceNow, researchers have stud...

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