When thrown properly, boomerangs can be lethal weapons. In fact, cave paintings in Australia show that they’ve been used as such for thousands of years, during hunting and war.
Now, scientists think they might have the remains of a boomerang-attack victim, with the discovery of an 800-year-old skeleton that has a long gash in its skull.
The bones were found eroding out of a riverbank in New South Wales’ Toorale National Park two years ago. The skeleton — a male, likely between 25 and 35 years old when he died —was well preserved and appeared to have been carefully buried in a tightly flexed position. He was named “Kaakutja,” a term from the local Baakantji people meaning “older brother.”
Researchers found that Kaakutja ate crayfish and possum for his last meal, and that conflict was part of his lifestyle; he had two head injuries that had partially healed and fresh deadly wounds that had no signs of healing