Cuevo del Llanos

Cueva de Villaverde


Useful Information

Location: Villaverde, La Oliva. From the Casa Museo "La Rosita" towards town center, first turn right, 300m.
Open: All year Tue-Sat 10:15-12:45, 14:45-17:15, tours every 30 min. [2005]
Fee: Adults EUR 5, Children (0-12) free, Residents EUR 2.50. Groups (10+): Adults EUR 3.75. [2006]
Classification:  Lava Tube
Light: electric.
Dimension: L=500m (north branch).
Guided tours: L=400m.
Photography:  
Accessibility:  
Bibliography: C. Castillo, E. Martin-Gonzalez, J.J. Coello (2001): Small vertebrate taphonomy of La Cuevo del Llanos, a volcanic cave on Fuerteventura (Canary islands, Spain), Palaeoecological implications, Palaeo 3, 166, 277-291.
J. C. Rando, L. Sala, P. Oromí (1993): The hypogean community of Cuevo del Llanos (Fuerteventura, Canary Islands), Mémories de Bioespéologie, 20: 189-193.
Address: Cuevo del Llanos, Villaverde, +34-928-175-928.
Last update:$Date: 2013/04/25 22:58:24 $

History

 
1979Cueva de Villaverde discovered during construction work.
11-FEB-2006cave opened to the public.

Description

In the village Villaverde lies the jameo to a lava tube, which is called Cuevo del Llanos. A jameo is the local term used for an entrance to a lava tube. The ceiling of those caves is rather thin, and so collapses of the roof are quite common. These are natural accesses to the caves, but often they are dangerous pits.

The Cuevo del Llanos is a lava tube which was formed by a lava stream from the Mt. Escanfraga. The jameo is an entrance to a passage which runs from north and to south. Mt. Escanfraga is one of chain of craters, which is typical for Fuerteventura. This chain was formed more than 690,000 years ago, which would mean that this cave is of extraordinary age for a lava tube. The tube was dated to be of Pleistocene age. Lava tubes are generally only a few ten thousand years old, as they are destroyed really fast by erosion.

The jameo at Villaverde was developed by the Cabildo of Fuerteventura. The reason was to protect it and to make it a tourist destination. The jameo is now covered by a nice building with more than 400m², which contains an exhibition, cafe, shop and toilets. 400m of the lava tube towards north are developed with paths and electric light.

The cave is famous for endemic troglobionts, which are portrayed in the little museum at the entrance. Two new endemic kinds of spiders, one only known from this cave, live here. One was named Maiorerus randoi Rambla, which seems to be a new genus, or even family of spiders, not only a new species. The other spider, Spernophorides fuertecavensis Wunderlich is also a true troglobiont, but does not show the same intense adaption to the lightless environment. Interesting are also the vertebrate fossils, and fossil and subfossil gastropodes found in the cave.

About 1km towards Villaverde, at the bus station next to the restaurant El Horno, lies the undeveloped cave Cueva de Villaverde. This lava tube is 190m long, and was discovered in 1979 during construction work. It is of great archaeological interrest, and contained stone and bone tools, hand mills, ceramics, jewelry made of shells, and the remains of fire places. The remains of land and sea animals shows that it was inhabited between 300 and 1400 AD. It was also used to bury people, two skeletons, of an adult man and a child, were found in the cave.


See also


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