During August 2009, an archaeological survey was conducted along the Parod–Zahar route of the waste water treatment pipeline (License No. S-140/2009; map ref. 24650–5030/75700–845), prior to the installation of a new pipeline. The survey, undertaken on behalf of the Israel Antiquities Authority and underwritten by the Peleg Ha-Galil Company, was directed by G. Cinamon (field photography), with the assistance of H. Bron (survey) and A. Shapiro (GPS).
The survey was conducted along the foot of Har ‘Ammi‘ad and Har ‘Aqavya and it bordered on the Khirbat el-Ballana and Nahal ‘Akhbera antiquities sites (South; Fig. 1). The surface of the surveyed region is very rocky and it has no water sources. The area had not been previously surveyed and there are no known antiquities sites in it. Stone heaps, a tumulus and remains of a building that might be a farmhouse were discovered.
Several medium and large stone heaps, probably clearance heaps created when the land was prepared for cultivation, were located in the eastern part of the survey area, atop a low rocky hill composed of limestone that had undergone karstic weathering.
On the southern slope of the hill was a large tumulus (diam. 10–15 m; Fig. 2) built of small stones. Inside it were several large flat stones that formed a small cavity. This is probably a burial cell of a dolmen. No potsherds or flint tools were discovered around the tumulus.
Remains of a small rectangular structure (4×5 m) built of large flat stones were found on the western fringes of the hill. Heaps of fieldstones that are probably remains of walls that delimited an animal pen (diam. c. 25 m; Fig. 3) are visible next to the structure. The building and the animal pen are evidently part of a small farm. Several worn potsherds, generally dating to the Roman-Byzantine period, were found in the area.
The area is rocky in the westernmost part of the survey, from Camp ‘Ammi‘ad to ‘En Kammonim Farm. A dirt road, several stone clearances heaps and farming terrace walls attest to work that was done in preparing the land for modern agricultural use. The route of the waste water pipeline overlaps the dirt road and no archaeological remains were found on it. The northern part of the survey area is located in the Sela ‘Akhbera Nature Reserve.