The caiman/puma monster-shaped mound is one of two figures from the 4,000 year old preceramic site of El Paraíso, in the Chilca Valley. The other, a condor, is partly visible in the upper left. The arrow shows the mound’s alignment to the Milky Way.
Credit Photo courtesy of Robert Benfer
The El Paraíso condor lines up with this stone sculpted to resemble a condor head. Viewed from the entrance to a 4,000 year old temple at the site, the sun rises over this pillar during the equinox.
Credit Photo courtesy of Google Earth Pro
Orcas hunted off the Peruvian coast 500 meters away until recently when industrial fishing removed their prey. This orca-shaped mound dated to approximately 5000 years ago.
Originally published on Wed August 1, 2012 2:11 pm
Updated 1:20 p.m. August 1 with reopening of smelter
The Doe Run Peru smelter in La Oroya, which had been clsoed due to financial and environmental compliance issues since 2009, resumed zinc processing operations over the weekend.
Peru's Minister of Energy and Mines, Jorge Merino Tafur, is reported to have said that lead smelting would also resume in the not too distant future. Restarting copper production would likely take longer, since that would require building a plant to control sulfuric acid emissions.
Doe Run Peru is owned by the Renco Group, which also owns the St. Louis-based Doe Run Resources Corporation. The metal smelting companies in Missouri and Peru have operated independently since 2007.
MU professor emeritus of anthropology Robert Benfer has discovered rare animal-shaped mounds in Peru. The mounds are three to five thousand years old.
MU’s spokesperson Tim Wall says this research is great contribution for the university.
“This is groundbreaking research by an MU anthropologist," said Wall, "who has found not only some of the oldest structures in the western atmosphere but some of the oldest structures on the planet. These are as old as like the pyramids.”