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This is how the oldest civilisation started in the Savannah

FOLLOWING special request from our readers in Geita we are covering the following article to give them more details about what happened at the beginning of time, meanwhile the word civilisation relates to the Latin term civitas or city that is why most of the time it refers to urban societies.

From archeologists, anthropologists, and historians, the standard definition of civilisation is an advanced state of society, in which a high level of culture, science, industry and government have been reached. Historical records indicate that the roots of civilization reach back to the earliest introduction of primitive technology and culture.

Prehistory accounts show that foundation of the modern civilization was built at the beginning of Stone Age and cemented not more than 8,000 years ago. From its starting point, civilization of any society was characterized by farming of food crops, domestication of animals and division of labor which led to advancement of tools.

Scientific researches in the Savannah report that while humans were trending in the primitive communal society, ants started to domesticate Fungi for their food about 50 million years ago. As if that is not enough, from the middle of bushes in Lukwika Lumesule, Ugala to the base of Ngorongoro crater elephants are known for a unique culture of paying homage to their fallen member.

Wherever these big mammals come across a carcass of their fellow they will stop and use trunks to sniff its skeleton to get biological information before they respectively cover it with grasses. While elephants demonstrate this high level of heartfelt sympathy to their friend or relative, before human eyes animals are regarded as cruel and uncivilized.

These may be a result of different ways in which animals talk to each other and the language which human use when communicating with animals. History tells us that about 350 years ago both humans and animals such hyena, aardvark, warthogs and other mammals used to spend their night inside caves.

It’s believed that although bushfire existed on the Earth from 470 million years ago, it started to spread into different parts of the world about 6 to 7 million years ago. Scientists say because of different factors our ancestors could not discover or use fire until 100,000 years ago when they were able to use the flame as source of energy.

This indicates that about 1.9 million years ago before this magnificent discovery humans ate raw foods just like all wild animals in the wild. The discovery and usage of fire played a huge development to humans who were dwelling in the plains and hills covered by a huge blanket of primitive.

It’s clear that civilization embodied with health, sanitation and privacy had nothing to do with a small community which its main activities were hunting animals and gathering fruits. Just like many animals in the wild, during those old free days humans did not have toilets they use to deliver their faeces wherever or whenever anyone felt it suit him or her.

At the time of food surplus against small bands made up of not more than 60 individuals, piles of faeces in different parts of huge savannah grassland weren’t a problem. Scientists say that while humans were still trailing with the chains of primitive, termites, ants and other social insects invented public toilets more 110 million years ago.

Many things played a key role on this discovery but the emerging of flowering plants about 130 million years ago contributed the flourishing of the social insects and demanded changes on the way they lived. According to geological time scale of the Earth this period is called Cretaceous and it’s believed during those ancient days more than 12,500 different species of social insects thrived on Earth.

Scientific researches indicate that from those earliest days, ants, termites and other social insects have been setting aside special chambers as toilets whenever they build a mound.

History shows that from the banks of Babylon river through the narrow paths of ancient Engaruka village to the walls of Mutapa kingdom, among human societies bases for civilization were laid on about 6,500 years ago.

From those days to date, the usage of latrines by humans is only for health and sanitation but in the savannah insects and animals set a common toilet for more than one reasons. In the savannah grassland or tropical rain forest, social insects and mammals use one part of their mound or home range for social and security reasons.

During day’s time, members of a troop of primate take different ways to find food but in the evening hours every one returns and spends a night in one location on different trees or branches. To maintain unity and stability in any troop, most of primates invented public toilets after experiencing different challenges from the time they evolved on the Earth about 65 million years ago.

A common latrine is a security matter to primates and social insects because every individual in a group carries a unique chemical or biological identity. From 37 million years ago Rock Hyraxes evolved on the Earth, from 23 million years ago they have manages to speed in different part of the savannah where they live in a group made up by 5 to 30 animals, are able to differentiate.

The small mammals have been successful to avoid attacks from different enemies because of using one place outside their cave as a latrine. With a powerful nose, a single latrine also helps hyraxes to identify each member in a group and differentiate any intruder or unwanted guest from other group.

By using a single latrine animals of savannah are able to avoid or reduce conflicts among members of specie which may be caused by social position and interests. Different animal use their urine and faeces to set boundaries of a home range, this is because almost every mammal is able to identify an intruder, relative or friend by smelling its waste with special odor.

Lion roars to alert any intruder to stay away from his territory but at the time it shuts its mouth the pride land becomes prone for attacks from rivals. To avoid problem with good neighbors, every lions marks the boundary of its pride land with urine which contain powerful chemical to identify him before others in the savannah.

While equipped with Sebaceous glands which emit fluid with very powerful odor, spotted hyenas are masters of this art in the whole of savannah. Having being in Africa from 5.3 million years ago, spotted hyenas built this tactic when they were establishing one of oldest clans on Earth.

This is an old civilization which enable a clan to occupy a cave and live together peacefully by following rules which govern one of the oldest community in the world. Due to security reasons older spotted hyenas occupy the mouth of a cave while juveniles stay inner part and avoid attacks from predators.

Scientists say spotted hyenas enhanced the habit of sleeping in caves about 11, 700 during the Pleistocene when the world was going through enormous climatic changes. According to reports from International Union of Geological Sciences during those days the world was wrecked with natural disasters.

This included powerful winds which caused a rapid fall of temperature and accumulate ice on top of Africa’s highest peaks such as Kilimanjaro, Kenya, Ruwenzori and Meru. Fast blowing and powerful winds caused deaths to many animals in the savannah but in Serengeti to avoid being wiped out spotted hyena started to sleep in caves on Kopjes rocks.

Since those old days to date a group of spotted hyenas about 20 animals occupy one cave where they use one latrine located 20 meters from the door. Being one of oldest civilisation on earth, life inside the cave which spotted hyenas stay is governed by social classes, the higher the class means easy access with more resources.


THE government has finally bowed into the pressure ...

Author: Reginald Stanislaus Matillya

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