A Moai sculpture has recently been uncovered on Rapa Nui, a Chilean region known as Easter Island. Situated in a lake basin that had become desiccated, the minuscule holy edifice was not usually within reach of human beings. Nevertheless, weather conditions related to climate change evidently caused the lake to recede, thereby granting archaeologists an opportunity to conduct an excavation. There are over a thousand still-standing moai monuments that the ancient Rapa Nui people constructed on Easter Island; the highest of these is ten meters tall and weighs three to five tons.
As most thought there was nothing else to discover on the island, Salvador Atan Hito, the vice president of Ma’u Henua, reported finding a new moai statue.
A Moai statue has been identified in a crater on Easter Island. The photo was shared by Good Morning America and the island’s national park is under the guardianship of Ma’u Henua, the indigenous organization which looks after the Rapa Nui people. According to Salvador Atan Hito, who oversees the site, “it is a highly significant discovery for the Rapa Nui people as nobody was aware of its existence, not even the ancestors or grand-parents”. Terry Hunt, an archaeology professor from University of Arizona with expertise in Rapa Nui matters, concurs.
Now the archaeologists are searching the site for evidence of moai and tools that may have been used in their creation.
Hunt explained that the tall reeds that grow in the lakebed have hidden them and prospecting with something that can detect what’s beneath the surface could reveal that there are more moai in the lakebed sediments. If there’s one moai in a lake, there’s probably more.