STEVE ALLEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY STEVE ALLEN / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Easter Island statue. Half-buried moai statue on Easter Island (Rapa Nui) in the South Pacific. These megalithic statues were carved from volcanic rock by the islanders from around 1000-1500 AD. Around 1000 statues were carved, with about 100 of these re-erected by archaeologists, but many, as here, remain on the slopes of the volcano where they were carved out of the rock. They are now partially buried in the soil formed by centuries of erosion. The statues range from 3 to 12 metres in height and weigh up to 85 tonnes. Carving and erection of the statues ceased as deforestation led to the total collapse of the island's culture and ecosystem.
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