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Garbage Dumped on Peru's Nazca Lines

A town in Peru set up a garbage dump inside the ancient Nazca lines, with heavy garbage trucks driving across the delicate etchings. The mysterious lines were etched into the desert more than a thousand years ago and cover 35 miles with large figures of a hummingbird, a monkey, a whale, a spider and a space alien that can only be clearly seen from the air. The lines were made by the Nazca and Paracas cultures clearing dark rocks on the desert surface to expose the lighter soil underneath.

Drew Benson writes in Newsday.com that after much protest, Nazca Mayor Daniel Mantilla relocated the dump, but they've left behind a pile of garbage several feet high, spread over an area 200 yards long and 60 yards wide. They've made no plans to clean up the area.

Archeologist Alberto Urbano says trucks damaged two trapezoid-shaped lines. The huge area that contains the thousands of Nazca lines is lightly guarded. In another recent incident, trucks were driving over the lines in order to avoid paying tolls on a nearby highway.

We've forgotten so much about the past, but on recent Dreamland shows, we've been investigating the lost secrets of ancient civilizations.

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