JIM WEST / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY JIM WEST / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Maya archaeological site. Archaeology students excavating a section of the Cahal Pech Maya site in western Belize. This site was settled by the Maya from about 1000 BC until 800 AD. The Maya were an ancient Mesoamerican civilization that inhabited southern Mexico and nearby areas for thousands of years from the second millennium BC to the Spanish conquest in the 16th century. The students are volunteers, mostly from the United States. The work is being carried out under the direction of the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance Project. Photographed in June 2006, near San Ignacio, Belize.
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