Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

Cultures > Semi-arid North > Paleoindian hunters of the Arid North

Environment and Location

When the first humans came to the Americas, the glacial climate of the Pleistocene was just beginning to lessen. In the Semi-arid north of Chile (from the Copiapó to the Aconcagua Valley) the melting of the ice left behind a land sprinkled with lakes and rushing rivers, increasing vegetation and concentrating herds of large land animals, now extinct, around these more verdant areas. Among these animals were the so-called megafauna, including mastodon, New World horses, swamp deer, early llama and Milodon.