A timeline of Sahara occupation [See Map]:
22,000 to 10,500 years ago: The Sahara was devoid of any human occupation outside the Nile Valley and extended 250 miles further south than it does today.
10,500 to 9,000 years ago: Monsoon rains begin sweeping into the Sahara, transforming the region into a habitable area swiftly settled by Nile Valley dwellers.
9,000 to 7,300 years ago: Continued rains, vegetation growth, and animal migrations lead to well established human settlements, including the introduction of domesticated livestock such as sheep and goats.
7,300 to 5,500 years ago: Retreating monsoonal rains initiate desiccation in the Egyptian Sahara, prompting humans to move to remaining habitable niches in Sudanese Sahara. The end of the rains and return of desert conditions throughout the Sahara after 5,500 coincides with population return to the Nile Valley and the beginning of pharaonic society.
· 9 years ago