Osorno is a city and commune in southern Chile and capital of Osorno Province in the Los Lagos Region. It had a population of 145,475, as of the 2002 census, it is located 945 kilometres south of the national capital of Santiago, 105 kilometres north of the regional capital of Puerto Montt and 260 kilometres west of the Argentine city of San Carlos de Bariloche, connected via International Route 215 through the Cardenal Antonio Samoré Pass. As such, it's a gateway for land access to the austral regions of Aysén and Magallanes, that would otherwise be accessible only by sea from the rest of the country. Located at the confluence of Rahue and Damas River Osorno is the main service centre of agriculture and cattle farming in the northern Los Lagos Region; the city's cultural heritage is shaped by Spanish and German influences. The city of Osorno is built upon river terraces formed during the last of Earth's geological periods —the Quaternary. 130,000 years ago, during the transition from the Santa María glaciation and the Valdivia interglacial the area of Osorno was covered by pyroclastic material derivative from large and explosive volcanic eruptions in the Andes.
The substrate of Osorno is accordingly made of various combinations of volcanic ash, lapilli and gravel with occasional layers of peat. The city hosts the site of Pilauco Bajo, an paleontological and archaeological site with an adjoining museum; the city was planned to be founded in 1553, under the Government of Pedro de Valdivia by his companion of conquest, Lieutenant General Don Francisco de Villagra. However, Valdivia's death prevented the realization of this plan. On March 27, 1558, the city was founded by governor García Hurtado de Mendoza, with the new name of Villa de San Mateo de Osorno, in honor of his grandfather, Count of Osorno, it was destroyed again by the indigenous Huilliche people in October 1602. On November 22, 1792, Tomás de Figueroa took possession of the ruins. Under the orders of Ambrosio O'Higgins, Osorno was again rebuilt by Juan Mackenna, declared re-populated in 1796. O'Higgins, in turn, was awarded the title of Marquess of Osorno. Osorno owes its legacy to recent Chilean settlement, when the government subdued the region's indigenous Mapuche peoples in the mid-19th century and opened the land to Chilean and European immigration soon to follow.
Large percentage of locals in Osorno are descendants of other European immigrants. Around 1850, the government of Chile began inviting German settlers to the colony to promote growth in the region. With their help, Osorno was made the home of the National Cattle ranch of Chile, boosting the regional economy significantly. Present-day Osorno has preserved 19th century architecture and urban layout, represented by six picturesque houses which have been designated national monuments. Osorno has a long history of rivalry with Valdivia, in a 2006 referendum, the Osorno Province rejected its proposed incorporation into the new Los Ríos Region, of which Valdivia is now the capital. Osorno has an oceanic climate with a drying trend in summer. Winters are cool but mild with a July average of 7.6 °C. Most of the precipitation falls during this time of the year with May to July being the wettest months, averaging around 180 millimetres to 210 millimetres of precipitation and humidity is high, averaging around 85%.
Snowfalls are rare. Summers are drier and mild with a January average of 17.8 °C and during this time, precipitation is lower, averaging 48.9 millimetres in January. In some years, many days can go without a day of precipitation such as the case in 1992 when only 1.1 millimetres of precipitation was recorded in January while in other years, some summers can have several wet days in a row. Temperatures can exceed 25 °C anytime from December to March; the average annual precipitation is 1,318 millimetres and there are 173 days with measureable precipitation. The record high was 36.5 °C in February 2019 and the record low was −8.0 °C in July 1954. Osorno sits in sight of an active but minor volcano; the city's most prominent geographical feature is the Rahue River that runs north-south through its center. A smaller stream breaks off as well, running east before turning south and giving the city some natural boundaries. Located near the river front on the east side is the city's heart, the Plaza de Armas, a large, one-block park with fountains and tree-lined avenues.
On the park's east side is La Catedral of Saint Matthew, one of the city's major landmarks, notable for its modern architecture. The cathedral serves as mother church of the Catholic Diocese of Osorno. Along the south side is Juan Mackenna Avenue, the city's major city centre street. Other points of interest are the main campus of the Universidad de Los Lagos and the Osorno Rodeo Stadium; the opened casino Plaza Sol de los Lagos is a new popular attraction for tourists and locals alike. Osorno hosts a number of annual celebrations; the Festival de la Carne y la Leche is a music festival held annually in late January, features performances by national music pop singers and bands. The Festival del Folklore Campesino held annually in mid-January, features performances of regional music folk artists. Another celebration is the Feria Ganadera Sago Fisur held annually in early November, hosted by the larges
German colonization of Valdivia, Osorno and Llanquihue
From 1850 to 1875 the region around Valdivia and Llanquihue in Southern Chile received some 6,000 German immigrants as part of a state-led colonization scheme. Some immigrants were leaving Europe as consequence of the aftermath of the German revolutions of 1848–49, they brought skills and assets as artisans and merchants to Chile, contributing to development. German settlement had a long-lasting influence on the society and geography of Southern Chile; the German colonization of Valdivia and Llanquihue is considered the first of three waves of German settlement in Chile, the others lasting from 1882 to 1914 and from 1918 onward. Beginning in 1842 German expatriate Bernhard Eunom Philippi sent a proposal of German colonization of Southern Chile to the Chilean government. In 1844 Philippi presented a second colonization scheme; the second scheme considered the colonization of both the shores of Llanquihue Lake and the mouth of Maullín River. The mentioned river was to be made navigable. In 1844 Philippi formed a partnership with Ferdinand Flindt, a German merchant based in Valparaíso, who represented Prussia there as consul.
With financial backing from Flindt, in 1844 Philippi purchased land in Valdivia and along the southern bank of Bueno River to be developed by future immigrants. Philippi's brother, Rodolfo Amando Philippi, contributed to the colonization plans by recruiting nine German families to emigrate to Chile; these families arrived to Chile in 1846 aboard one of Flindt's ships. By the time the first immigrants arrived, Flindt had gone bankrupt and his properties were taken over by another German merchant, Franz Kindermann, he took over Flindt's responsibilities. Land purchases of dubious legality were made by Kindermann and his father-in-law Johann Renous around Trumao with the aim re-selling these lands to German immigrants. Bankrupted Flindt had made similar purchases near Osorno; as the Chilean state nullified Kindermanns and Renous purchases the first immigrants to arrive were instead settled in Isla Teja in Valdivia, a river island called Isla Valenzuela. Worried about the potential occupation of Southern Chile by European powers, Chilean authorities approved plans for colonization of the southern territories.
The Chilean legislature entered colonist recruitment with passage of the Law of Colonization and Vacant Lots, signed by president Manuel Montt in 1845. That same year Salvador Sanfuentes was appointed intendant of Valdivia and tasked with surveying the colonization potential of the Province. To carry out the survey, Sanfuentes commissioned Philippi as "provincial engineer"; the outbreak of the 1848 Revolution in the German states persuaded the hesitant Philippi to travel to Europe to recruit settlers. The Chilean government ordered Philippi to recruit 180-200 German Catholic families. Troubled by Catholic bishops in Germany who opposed the departure of their parishioners, Philippi asked for and was granted permission to recruit non-Catholic immigrants. Philippi succeeded in having the Chilean government put fixed prices on fiscal colonization land to stimulate immigration of economically independent individuals and avoid speculation. Most of the immigrants recruited by Philippi during his 1848-1851 stay in Germany were Protestant.
The few Catholic families recruited were all poor people from Württemberg. The immigrants recruited by Philippi arrived in 1850 at Valdivia, where Vicente Pérez Rosales was declared colonization agent by the Chilean government. One of the most notable early immigrants was Carl Anwandter, who settled in Valdivia in 1850 after having participated in the Revolution of 1848 in Prussia. Most immigrants were therefore free to settle where they wished, they settled around Valdivia. The few Catholic families from Württemberg, who needed Chilean state support, could be allocated as the government wished. By 1850, this last group was too small to establish a functional German settlement at the shores of Llanquihue Lake as Philippi had envisioned, he decided to settle the Catholic families in the interior of Valdivia Province. Upon his return to Chile in 1851, Philippi was admonished by minister Antonio Varas for sending too many Protestant settlers; as punishment Philippi was appointed governor of Magallanes instead of being appointed leader of the future Llanquihue settlement as he wished.
In Magallanes, Philippi was killed by indigenous people in 1852. We shall be honest and laborious Chileans as the best of them, we shall defend our adopted country joining in the ranks of our new countrymen, against any foreign oppression and with the decision and firmness of the man that defends his country, his family and his interests. Never will have the country that adopts us as its children, reason to repent of such illustrated and generous proceeding... Pérez Rosales succeeded Philippi as government agent in Europe in 1850; the sponsored colonization of Valdivia and Osorno lasted until 1858. The shores of Llanquihue Lake were colonized between 1852 and 1875 but Puerto Montt and Puerto Varas had been founded by Chileans in 1850. Frutillar on the shores of Llanquihue Lake was founded in 1856; the Puerto Montt and the zone around the Llanquihue Lake developed rapidly. The zone had a formal police force established in 1859 to deal with c
Protected areas of Chile
The protected areas of Chile are areas that have natural beauty or significant historical value protected by the government of Chile. These protected areas cover over 140,000 km2, 19% of the territory of Chile; the National System of Protected Wild Areas is regulated by law #18,362 passed in 1984, administered by the National Forest Corporation. There are three types of territories: National Parks National Reserves Natural Monuments Las Vicuñas National Reserve Lauca National Park Salar de Surire Natural Monument Pampa del Tamarugal National Reserve Volcán Isluga National Park Alto Loa National Reserve La Chimba National Reserve La Portada Natural Monument Llullaillaco National Park Los Flamencos National Reserve North Paposo National Monument Llanos de Challe National Park Nevado Tres Cruces National Park Pan de Azúcar National Park Pingüino de Humboldt National Reserve Bosque de Fray Jorge National Park Las Chinchillas National Reserve Pichasca Natural Monument Archipiélago de Juan Fernández National Park El Yali National Reserve Isla Cachagua Natural Monument La Campana National Park Lago Peñuelas National Reserve Rapa Nui National Park Río Blanco National Reserve El Morado Natural Monument Río Clarillo National Reserve Roblería del Cobre de Loncha National Reserve Yerba Loca Nature Sanctuary Las Palmas de Cocalán National Park Río de los Cipreses National Reserve Altos de Lircay National Reserve Federico Albert National Reserve Laguna Torca National Reserve Los Bellotos del Melado National Reserve Los Queules National Reserve Los Ruiles National Reserve Radal Siete Tazas National Reserve Isla Mocha National Reserve Laguna del Laja National Park Los Huemules de Niblinto National Reserve Ñuble National Reserve Ralco National Reserve Alto Biobío National Reserve Cerro Ñielol Natural Monument China Muerta National Reserve Conguillío National Park Contulmo Natural Monument Huerquehue National Park Malalcahuello National Reserve Malleco National Reserve Nahuelbuta National Park Nalcas National Reserve Tolhuaca National Park Villarrica National Park Villarrica National Reserve Alerce Costero National Park Área Costera Protegida Punta Curiñanco Carlos Anwandter Nature Sanctuary Huilo-Huilo Biological Reserve Mocho-Choshuenco National Reserve Oncol Park Puyehue National Park Valdivia National Reserve Valdivian Coastal Reserve Villarrica National Park Alerce Andino National Park Chiloé National Park Corcovado National Park Futaleufú National Reserve Hornopirén National Park Islotes de Puñihuil Natural Monument Lago Palena National Reserve Lahuen Ñadi Natural Monument Llanquihue National Reserve Los Vertientes Private Nature Reserve Pumalín Park Puyehue National Park Tantauco Park Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park Bernardo O'Higgins National Park Cerro Castillo National Reserve Cinco Hermanas Natural Monument Coihaique National Reserve Dos Lagunas Natural Monument Isla Guamblin National Park Isla Magdalena National Park Katalalixar National Reserve Lago Carlota National Reserve Lago Cochrane National Reserve Lago Jeinimeni National Reserve Lago Las Torres National Reserve Lago Rosselot National Reserve Laguna de San Rafael National Park Las Guaitecas National Reserve Queulat National Park Río Simpson National Reserve Trapananda National Reserve Alacalufes National Reserve Alberto de Agostini National Park Bernardo O'Higgins National Park Cabo de Hornos National Park Cueva del Milodón Natural Monument Francisco Coloane Coastal and Marine Protected Area Laguna de los Cisnes Natural Monument Laguna Parrillar National Reserve Los Pingüinos Natural Monument Magallanes National Reserve Omora Ethnobotanical Park Pali-Aike National Park Torres del Paine National Park Yendegaia National Park National Monuments of Chile Official website of CONAF, a government agency, part of the Agriculture Ministry
Puyehue National Park
Puyehue National Park is located in the Andes mountain range, in Los Ríos and Los Lagos regions of Chile referred to as the 10th region. The park boast 220,000 acres of natural thermal springs and evergreen forests, after having been expanded in 1950 and 1981; the park is Chile’s most visited national park with 400,000 people enjoying it each year. Puyehue National park forms part of the Reserve of Temperate Rainy Forest Biospheres of the Southern Andes. Chile Route 215 passes through the park, which connects with the Argentine Route 231 via Cardenal Antonio Samoré Pass; the park lies in the Osorno Province, town of Puyehue. It is 118 miles northeast of Puerto Montt, or 50 miles east of Osorno; the park is dominated by Cordón Caulle and Antillanca Group. The park is divided into three main areas: Aguas Calientes and Antillanca; each area has special activities according to its landscape. Aguas Calientes feature natural thermal baths and hiking trails. Anticura area features the Puyehue volcano, the El Puma lookout point, the Cordón Caulle and hot springs, a volcanic area, a strawberry field, called the Pampa de Frutilla, the Salto de la Princesa, a waterfall of an inlet of the Golgol river, an 800-year-old forest of coigüe trees, as well as recreational trails.
The Antillanca area features crater Raihuén and Mirador hill, the Las Gaviotas river as well as the Rupanco Lake. Furthermore, there is skiing on the slopes of the Casablanca volcano; the Golgol and the Las Gaviotas river are the main waterways in the park. The Chanleufú flows through the park. Two distributaries of the Golgol include Anticura and Pajaritos, which both flow into Lake Puyehue, outside the park. Five lakes inside the park include Constancia, Paraíso, Lake Berlin, part of the Rupanco Lake. Puyehue National Park has warden stations in each of its three areas; the main administration is in the Aguas Calientes area. Puyehue National Park has a Center of Environmental Information that provides fauna and flora information in both the Aguas Calientes and the Anticura areas; the Anticura area has a CONAF guard station, a campsite. And the Antillanca area of Puyehue National Park has a ski center and a good hotel open all year round. Free entrance; the Anticura section costs 800 Chilean pesos to enter, about 1.60 usd.
Puyehue National Park includes a hotel with a thermal complex, a lodging house and campsites. Hiking, fishing and flora observation, photography, excursions, horseback riding, mountain bike riding, downhill skiing, cross country skiing and bird watching are the activities that can be practised in the park, its flora in the lower parts is that one of Valdivian temperate rain forest and is similar to that of its southern neighbor, the Vicente Pérez Rosales National Park. Temperate evergreen forests occur at lower elevations. Species of trees include coigüe and the common ulmo and tineo; the underbrush has abundant bushes, ferns and lichens, giving it great forest richness. At higher altitude there are coigüe woods with tepa and mañío, which became the dominant species. Pure stands of Nothofagus betuloides and Nothofagus pumilio are found just below the tree line. Forests of coigües de Magallanes, with dense underbrush, a species of deciduous leaves that become reddish during Autumn. Communities of marshes called "mallines" can be covered with thick moss.
Other tree species found in the park include, a species of law brushwood, cypress of Guaitecas. Mammals in the Puyehue National Park are the puma, gray fox, the quique or ferret, the coypu, the güiña or wild cat and the chingue and vizcachas; the park is a birdwatching destination with sitings of the torrent duck, the Magellanic woodpecker, the Chilean pigeon, the hued-hued, the Andean condor, the great grebe, the house wren and the buff-necked ibis. Aguas Calientes Area An excursion trail to the Berlín lake, is 6.8 miles long, takes about 5 hours, round trip. It runs along a stretch of the old road from Aguas Calientes to Antillanca, up to the Berlín lake, where there’s a rustic shelter for six people. El Pionero recreational trail, which 5,905 feet long, takes 20 minutes round trip, it leads to a viewpoint. El Recodo recreational trail, is 1,246 feet, takes 15 minutes round trip, it connects with the Aguas Calientes area. The Chanlefú Rapids educational trail is 3,937 feet, it takes a half round trip.
It leads to waterfalls and river rapids. Los Derrumbes recreational trail, 1,902 feet long, takes 45 minutes round trip; the pools of the Aguas Calientes reach up to 42°C/107°F, make for an inviting spot to relax alongside the Rio PichilanleufuAnticura Area An excursion trail to Puyehue volcano, is 9.9 miles long, the volcano is 2240 meters high. This excursion takes 3 days round trip. It’s a self-guided trail that reaches the volcano, the sulfur deposits, the hot springs of the Caulle mountain range. On the hillsides of the volcano there’s a rustic shelter for 12 people. During the 1960 earthquake, the volcano released flowing rivers of lava that turned a vast tract of the dense forest into sand dunes and lava spillways. Excursion trail
Chubut is a province in southern Argentina, situated between the 42nd parallel south, the 46th parallel south, the Andes range to the west, the Atlantic ocean to the east. The province's name derives from the Tehuelche word chupat, meaning "transparent," their description of the Chubut River; the largest city is Comodoro Rivadavia in the south of the province. The administrative capital is Rawson. Other important cities are Puerto Madryn, Trelew and Sarmiento. Gaiman is a cultural and demographic centre of the region known as "Y Wladfa" in which Welsh-Argentines are concentrated. Of the 25,000 Welsh speakers in Argentina, 5,000 live in the Chubut region in the early Welsh settlements of Gaiman and Trevelin. Before the Spaniards arrived in the Americas, nomadic indigenous Tehuelche peoples had inhabited the Patagonia region for thousands of years, they covered territory in seasonal cycles as they followed game. In the 17th and 18th centuries, Spanish missionaries came to the area, founded the San José Fort on Península Valdés.
The indigenous people destroyed it. In 1865, Welsh people settled in the Chubut Valley area; the region was disputed between Chile and Argentina until 1881. Chile renounced its claim in order to prevent Argentina from entering into the War of the Pacific, in which it was fighting against Peru and Bolivia; as part of the Conquista del Desierto, Argentina organized the National Territory of Chubut in 1884, after the last indigenous cacique, surrendered to government forces. Luis Fontana was named governor. At the beginning of the 20th century, after the Boer War, some Boer people settled in the town of Sarmiento and in lesser number in other nearby towns. In 1944, the southern part of Chubut and northern part of Santa Cruz were designated the Comodoro Rivadavia military zone; the zone was dissolved in 1955, Chubut was declared a province. Studies in the 1950s revealed mineral wealth in the province, which the government has tried to develop. Population shifts of the late 20th century from Buenos Aires, raised the population from 190,000, to 357,000 and 413,237.
The government has encouraged people to resettle here. Most of the inhabitants are in the main cities, they have settled along the Chubut River. Most areas have a population density of less than 1 inhabitant per square kilometer. Chubut's economy, for a long time one of the most prosperous in Argentina, is one of the country's least diversified. Nearly one-quarter of its 2006 output, estimated at US$4.652 billion, is generated by mining and petroleum. This sector's contribution helped give Chubut the nation's fourth-highest per capita output in 2011, US$25,250. Petroleum refining is the main economic activity of the province. On May 21, 2014, Miguel Galuccio of YPF and Chubut Governor Martin Buzzi announced the first unconventional oil and gas discovery in Chubut from a fracked well in the Early Cretaceous D-129 formation of the Golfo San Jorge basin. Chubut produces 21% of the nation's fish catch. Sheep ranching, though less than half as productive in the 21st century compared to as as 1990, remains important at the local level.
The advent of synthetic replacements to wool after World War II battered the sector. It declined further because of damage from natural disasters. Wool production has risen since 2002, totaled 71,000 tons in 2006. Chubut stretches from the Atlantic to the Andes with 3 distinct environmental regions: The Andes, the central plains and the coastal regions; the Andes in the westernmost parts of the province extend along the Chilean border. The Andes are not that high in Chubut, with most peaks averaging around 1,500 and 2,000 metres, which becomes smaller in altitude in the southern parts; the highest peak is Cerro Dos Picos, located east of Lago Cholila with a height of 2,515 metres. The Andes in this province are of tertiary origin and are separated by wide, deep transverse valleys that are oriented in an east–west direction; these valleys are occupied by glacial rivers flowing east from the mountains. Most of these valleys existed; the lakes, which are located in the western parts of the province are of glacial origin because during the last ice age, the movement of the glaciers lead to the formation of extensive areas of depressions that were filled up with water to form the lakes today.
The Andes cause humid winds from the Pacific Ocean to rise so most of the moisture precipitates on the western side of the Andes, leaving all except the Andean portion of the province dry. In the Andean region, the climate is cold for its latitude owing to the higher elevations there and the influence of winds from the Pacific Ocean; the peaks are snow covered throughout the year. In this region, precipitation ranges from 700 mm to over 2,500 mm in some areas; the central parts of the province have an arid climate with hot, sunny summers but cold winters and only average 200 mm of precipitation a year. The central parts of the province are windy throughout the year; the coast has short summers and cold winters. It is the mildest region in the province with the warmest annual mean temperatures; the coast region's climate is a transition between the more temperate
Monte Verde is an archaeological site in southern Chile, located near Puerto Montt, Southern Chile, dated to as early as 18,500 cal BP. The accepted date for early occupation at Monte Verde was ~14,500 years cal BP; this dating added to the evidence showing that the human settlement of the Americas pre-dates the Clovis culture by 1000 years. This contradicts the accepted "Clovis first" model which holds that settlement of the Americas began after 13,500 cal BP; the Monte Verde findings were dismissed by most of the scientific community, but the evidence became more accepted in archaeological circles. Paleoecological evidence of the coastal landscape's ability to sustain human life further supports a "coastal migration" model. Dating of rock surfaces and animal bones suggests the coastal corridor was deglaciated and became habitable after 17,000 years BP. Although testing coastal migration theories can be difficult due to sea level rise since the last glacial maximum, archaeologists are willing to accept the possibility that the initial settlement of the Americas occurred via coastlines.
The site was discovered in late 1975 when a veterinary student visited the area of Monte Verde, where severe erosion was occurring due to logging. The student was shown a strange "cow bone" collected by nearby peasants who had found it exposed in the eroded Chinchihuapi Creek; the bone proved to be from a gomphothere. Tom Dillehay, an American anthropologist and professor at the Universidad Austral de Chile at the time, started excavating Monte Verde in 1977; the site is situated on the banks of Chinchihuapi Creek, a tributary of the Maullín River located 36 miles from the Pacific Ocean. One of the rare open-air prehistoric sites found so far in the Americas, Monte Verde was well preserved because it was located in an anaerobic bog environment near the creek. A short time after the site was occupied, the waters of the creek rose and a peat-filled bog formed that inhibited the bacterial decay of organic material and preserved many perishable artifacts and other items for millennia. Radiocarbon dating of bones and charcoal in 1982 gave the site an average age of 14,800 years ago, more than 1000 years earlier than the oldest-known site of human habitation in the Americas at that time.
In the initial excavation, two large hearths were many small ones as well. The remains of local animals were found, in addition to wooden posts from twelve huts. Scraps of clothing made of hide were found; this led archaeologists to estimate. A human footprint was found in the clay from a child. Inside the camp, archaeologists found a chunk of meat that still had preserved DNA. After a DNA analysis, it matched that of a gomphothere, indicating the type of food the inhabitants ate. Awareness about Monte Verde among the international archaeology community was increased in 1989 when Dillehay delivered a presentation on Monte Verde at a conference on settlement of the Americas at the University of Maine. Archaeologist David J. Meltzer notes on that presentation: The images Tom Dillehay was showing of the well-preserved remains at Monte Verde—wooden artifacts and house planks, berries, seeds and stems, as well as marine algae, chunks of animal hide, what appeared to be several human coprolites found in three small pits—were unlike anything most of us, who long ago had learned to be used to stone tools and grateful for occasional bits of bone, had seen.
The early date for the site was not accepted until 1997. It had hitherto been agreed that ancient people had entered the Americas using the Bering Strait Land Bridge, about 13,000 kilometers north of the Monte Verde site. A group of 12 respected archaeologists revisited the site in 1997 and concluded that Monte Verde was an inhabited site and predated the Clovis culture. One of Dillehay’s colleagues, Dr. Mario Pino, claimed a lower layer of the site is 33,200 years old, based on the discovery of burned wood several hundred feet to the south of Monte Verde. Radiocarbon dating established the wood as 33,000 years old. Dillehay was cautious of this earlier date, as of 2007 it has not been verified nor accepted by the scientific community. Material evidence gathered at Monte Verde has reshaped the way archaeologists think about the earliest inhabitants of the Americas. Radiocarbon dating has provided a date of 14,800 BP and 33,000 BP, establishing Monte Verde as the oldest-known site of human habitation in the Americas.
The earliest accepted site had been determined to be near Clovis, New Mexico, dating between 13,500-13,000 BP, over 1,000 years than Monte Verde. The new dates supplied by Monte Verde have made the site a key factor in the debate over the first migration route from Asia to North America. Before the discovery of Monte Verde, the most popular and accepted theory was the overland route, which speculates that the first American inhabitants migrated from Asia across the Bering Strait and spread throughout North America. However, the early dates associated with Monte Verde appear to weaken this theory. Prior to 13,000 BP, the Cordilleran Glacier had not yet melted enough to reveal an ice-free corridor for people to reasonably journey by foot; the Monte Verde radiocarbon dates precede 13,000 BP, despite the fact that before the glacial melt, the vast, icy landscape of much of the Americas could not have permitted enough vegetation to sustain traveling people or herded animals. The most prevalent theory today is the coastal migration hypothesis, which argues that people migrated from
The Chiloé Archipelago is a group of islands lying off the coast of Chile, in the Los Lagos Region. It is separated from mainland Chile by the Chacao Channel in the north, the Sea of Chiloé in the east and the Gulf of Corcovado in the southeast; the archipelago forms the Chiloé Province. The main island is Chiloé Island. Chiloé is derived from the Mapuche word chillwe, meaning "seagull place". Chill or chülle refers to the brown-hooded gull, the -we suffix means'place'; the adjective and demonym for this region is chilote in the chilota in the feminine. Chiloé is known for its distinctive folklore, mythology and unique architecture; the variety of potato, most grown throughout the world is indigenous to the islands. The Chiloé Province includes all of the Chiloé Archipelago except the Grupo Desertores islands, plus the Isla Guafo, for a total land area of 9,181 square kilometres; the administrative center of the province is the city of Castro, while the episcopal see of the Roman Catholic bishopric is Ancud.
The province of Chiloé is part of the Los Lagos Region, which consists of the Chilean lakes region on the mainland north of Chiloé. Chiloé Island is at 8,394 square kilometres, it is rectangular, with its long axis oriented from north to south. To the east of Chiloé Island lies the Sea of Chiloé, which contains most of the other islands in the archipelago; the Sea of Chiloé is a marginal sea separating Chiloé Island from Palena Province. The main islands in the Sea of Chiloé are Quinchao, Lemuy and Desertores Islands. To the northeast and southeast of the archipelago lie the Gulf of Ancud and the Gulf of Corcovado; some 40 kilometres southwest of Chiloé Island lies Guafo Island, the southernmost island of the archipelago. Chiloé Island is separated from the Chilean mainland by the 2-kilometre-wide Chacao Channel in the north. Most of the good harbors are located on the island's eastern shores; the eastern shore is marked by a series of peninsulas and inlets, notably Estero de Castro where the capital, Castro, is located.
The western part of Chiloé Island, as well as the whole of Guafo Island, is hilly and covered by forests. The hills are subdivided into two north-south ranges, Piuchén and Pirulil, separated by the lakes Cucao and Huillinco, they contain the highest points in the archipelago, do not exceed 800 metres. Depressions in the western forest are occupied by numerous small lakes and bogs scattered across the landscape. A bridge to the mainland is planned for the archipelago, despite opposition from some residents who fear pollution and habitat destruction; the Chacao Channel bridge would replace the ferry that connects the village of Chacao, Ancud Comuna, on Route 5 at the northern end of Chiloé Island across the Chacao Channel with the village of Pargua, Calbuco Comuna, on the mainland. The archipelago's original vegetation is Valdivian temperate rainforest, a forest with a dense understory and a large diversity of plant species, including many mosses and ferns; the western and southern portions of the island are still covered by the native forest.
Notable species include arrayán, quila, Chilean rhubarb, the avellano. Fitzroya cupressoides and tepú grow in the poorly drained soils of the Pirulil ranges. Before the end of the Llanquihue glaciation, the southern parts of Chiloé Island constituted open landscapes; this changed around 12,500 years ago when the climate became warmer and forests colonized the region. The upper portions of Cordillera del Piuchén, locally known as la Campaña, has a Magellanic moorland vegetation; the arrival of agriculture in pre-Hispanic times was the origin of the patchy landscape of pastures and farms that now dominates the eastern and northern coast of Chiloé Island. Some native plants like Gevuina avellana and Fascicularia bicolor have edible seeds, others like the Chilean rhubarb have edible stems; the most notable edible plant native to Chiloé is the potato, which contrary to the Andean potatoes of Peru and Bolivia is adapted to the long-day conditions prevalent in the higher latitudes of southern Chile.
Hundreds of varieties of this potato have been cultivated by local indigenous peoples since before the Spanish conquest, historical and molecular evidence suggests that it is the progenitor of the world's most cultivated variety of potato, S. tuberosum tuberosum. The native fauna include many birds. Among land mammals the largest are the pudú, a small deer. Marine mammals include Commerson's dolphins and South American sea lions which form colonies at rock outcrops close to the sea. Several species of whale have been sighted around the island, notably blue whales and critically endangered southern right whales; the Chiloé Archipelago may have been populated as early as 12,000 to 11,800 BC according to archaeological discoveries in Monte Verde located less than 50 kilometres north of the main island. Chiloé's first ethnically identifiable inhabitants are believed to be the Chonos, a seafaring nomadic people. Somet