Starting a new chapter at the Companheira cave (Algarve, southern Portugal)

In a significant advancement for the FINISTERRA project, our team has initiated the process of reopening the original entrance to the Companheira Cave. This development follows a series of geophysical surveys that have laid the groundwork for a deeper exploration of the cave system, building on the discoveries made in the lower chambers.

The initial excavations have yielded Mousterian lithic materials, indicating Neanderthal activity, alongside a diverse collection of fossilized bones. These were located in a sediment cone that originates from the cave’s higher chambers, hinting at the presence of significant archaeological layers above the current excavation sites.

The project’s current focus on reopening the cave’s original entrance is driven by the goal of accessing these unexplored areas. By doing so, the team aims to uncover further evidence of the cave’s role in neanderthal adaptations and the broader environmental context of the region. This work is critical for developing a comprehensive understanding of the site’s archaeological and paleontological significance.

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