With regards to Easter Is. as I read the papers by Dr Hunt, there is no real refutation of earlier works, just a refinement of dating.
And actually makes a case for even more rapid degradation of the environment. It all happened in 400 years less time.
Another glaring bad assumption the author makes is that western polynesian were the first people to the islands, and that can be attested to by rat
gnawed palm nuts and rat skeletons showing up in the archeological record.
But if the first people there weren't polynesian then you won't find the dame lifestyle or its signatures.
The polynesian could hardly be called a low impact culture, unlike other cultures that adapted to the changing environments they encountered as they
moved around, the polynesian brought their old environment with them, in the form of a whole host of plants and and animals ( pigs and rats) , that
changed the environments they settled in.
One thing that slaps me in the face as I read about Easter islandis that , among all of the "polynesian" settled islands it the one example of a
lack of pigs. The supposed polynesian settlers didn't make there with the pig, how can that be when every other island they colonized aquired the
That clearly shows that polynesian influences on Easter island predate the introduction of the pig into polynesian culture,
One answer is that the pig was a late introduction into polynesian culture, apnd that is direction of dispersal is from west to east, while the
direction of dispersal for polynesian culture is from east to west.
A western polynesian tale backs up this idea,
"A Samoan legend tells of first contact with the Fijians; A Samoan voyager visited Fiji and was feasted on pork. He naturally desired to take
pigs back with him to his own country. The Fijians, however, refused to allow any live pigs to leave their shores, but they raised no objection to
dead pigs being taken as food for the voyage. The Samoans thereupon procured two very large pigs, which they killed and dressed. Unknown to their
hosts, they stole some young ones and concealed them in the abdominal cavities of the dressed animals which they covered with leaves. Carrying the
dead pigs on poles, they successfully eluded the vigilance of the Fijian "customs officers", and so pigs were introduced to Samoa."
Fiji is west of Samoa, so how did the somoans, whom are supposed to be descendants of fijians, have no knowledge of pigs?
This question is one worm of a " whole can of worms" that have yet to be addresses adequately by mainstream academia.