A tooth fragment recovered from an archaeological site in Haiti
A tooth fragment recovered from an archaeological site in Haiti is weighed and measured. DNA analyses revealed the tooth belonged to a horse that lived during the 16th century, making it the oldest ever sequenced for a domesticated horse from the Americas.
Researchers at the Florida Museum of Natural History unearthed a piece of a horse’s tooth dating back to Caribbean colonization from an archaeological site in northern Haiti. The site, known as Puerto Real, was once a bustling port town, an outpost under Spanish rule until it was abandoned in the mid-16th century. The discovery could shed light on the exploration patterns of Spanish colonists and a link between their horses and the feral horses on the island of Assateague.
[Research supported by U.S. National Science Foundation grant BCS 1930628.]
Learn more in the NSF Research News story Oldest DNA from domesticated American horse lends credence to shipwreck theory. (Date of image: 2022; date originally posted to NSF Multimedia Gallery: Feb. 3, 2023)
Credit: Jeff Gage/Florida Museum of Natural History
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