Dr. Arty Fax’s Archy Facts is a blog introducing kids (currently stuck at home) to the exciting world of archaeology!
Now you may wonder what warty pigs have to do with archaeology – well just recently a new study found that a warty pig is the oldest known animal drawing in the world! Drawn with ochre about 65 feet above the cave floor, the warty pig measures about 4.5 x 1.8 feet and is the largest drawing in this cave. Ochre is a naturally occurring red pigment. Can you spot the two human handprints near the back of the pig? Check out this Archy Facts post for an introduction to rock art.
Found in Leang Tedongnge Cave, in Sulawesi, Indonesia, researchers determined the age of the warty pig painting by dating minerals that had formed on top of it. Archaeologists think this drawing is around 45,500 years old!
The Sulawesi warty pig, Sus celebensis, still lives on the island today. Both male and female pigs have three pairs of facial warts, but they are much more noticeable in males. Archaeological evidence discovered on the island suggests that its early people hunted and perhaps even tamed wild pigs.
For more information on this fascinating discovery, check out the video below and read more here.