Alien-like skulls have been retrieved in Mexico. Their resemblance to the Saturday Night Live sketch The Coneheads, with an elongated cone-shaped skull, is uncanny.
The skulls were retrieved by accident when a dig for an irrigation system turned up an ancient cementary in the northwest state of Sonora. Researchers believe the deformation of human skulls were part of ancient ritual practiced some 1000 years ago in that area. Pieces of wood would sandwich a person's head and then be wrapped to the front and back of an individual's head to apply pressure on the skull.
Of the 25 skeletons found, 13 had the deformed craniums. 17 of the 25 were children between five months and 16 years of age. Several other artifacts like pendants, nose rings and jewelry were also found at the dig.
"Cranial deformation has been used by different societies in the world as a ritual practice, or for distinction of status within a group or to distinguish between social groups," said Cristina Garcia Moreno, an excavator on the Sonora site with the Arizona State University.
"The most common comment I've read from people that see the pictures of cranial deformation has been that they think that those people were 'aliens,'" Moreno says. "I could say that some say that as a joke, but the interesting thing is that some do think so. Obviously we are talking about human beings, not aliens."