Exploratory Data Analysis of Mounds in Chapada Diamantina Region, State of Bahia, Brazil
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Inspired by the studies of mounds and their intriguing spatial characteristics, we conducted an exploratory data analysis of mounds in Chapada Diamantina region, state of Bahia, Brazil. We selected 20 sites (each of which had between 82 and 459 mounds) from the study region and performed manual digitization of mounds with Google Earth. We used three distance-based functions: Nearest neighbor distance, Besag’s L and pair correlation functions to examine the significance of mounds spatial pattern, and Voronoi tessellation for visualization. We also conducted simple ANOVA analysis and pair-wise correlation tests to evaluate the difference in nearest neighbor distance by geomorphology type. Two hypotheses were tested: (1) mounds in the area maintain a regular spatial pattern at smaller scales, and (2) that nearest neighbor distance and intensity varies based on different geomorphology types. Our statistical testings support both hypotheses: mounds obtain a dispersed spatial pattern and the average nearest neighbor distance is determined by geomorphology type. The exploratory data analysis provides further implications to the study of mound origins and other fields of research.