Regarding patterns from tool-less butchering of birds, and having hunted and
eaten a few during fieldwork:
- Using cutting tools for the kinds of birds I'm thinking of (medium pigeons and
small ducks) strikes me as about as likely as doing the same for a bar of
- the bird often comes apart by breaking at bones rather than joints as there
seems to be weaker spots in the diaphysis than the ligaments etc. E.g. I seem
to remember crested pigeon (Ocyphaps lophotes) humeri breaking in the middle
rather than separating from the scapula, coracoid, etc. (kind of like how you
break the feet off small mammals across the ulna and tibia, so that you can pull
the skin off the legs easier). Sorry that sounds a bit vague, but what I'm
really meaning to suggest is that these might be the sort of patterns that
would emerge across a reasonable sample size both archaeologically and
Archaeology, A22, University of Sydney, 2006, NSW
lab:(02) 9036 5127 / mob: 0427 279 675 / hm: 9665 2073
> Date: Mon, 11 Oct 2004 22:41:44 -0400
> From: Seminario Relaciones Hombre-Fauna <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: bird in prehistoric sites
> I would like to share the next idea. Last weeks I have been comment with =
> colleague Stuart Fedel that the birds identified in prehistoric sites com=
> monly does not show cultural marks (cut-marks, burn, etc.). However, he s=
> ends this comment:
> "Last night, I saw something interesting. I was watching a DVD of a litt=
> le-known movie from 1974, "The White Dawn." It's about 3 whalers who are=
> stranded in the eastern Arctic in 1896 and live there with the local Inu=
> it. In one scene, one of them goes goose-hunting with the native people.=
> When they come back to the camp, he gives the killed geese to the villa=
> ge leader. This man takes a goose, and 4 or 5 of the Inuit grab the bird=
> and they all pull it apart. Obviously, this form of butchery will leave=
> no cut marks. If Paleoindians behaved the same way, it may be very diff=
> icult to demonstrate predation on birds in many cases.
> Finally, we thought that =E2=80=9Cslaughtering=E2=80=9D method could be s=
> hows cracks, fractures o deformations on bone. Also, I consider that it c=
> ould be applied to micromammals.
> Someone has seen something similar or have some data about this? Any comm=
> ent are welcome.
> Thanks in advance=20
> Eduardo Corona-M.
> Laboratorio de Arqueozoologia,
> Instituto Nacional de Antropolog=C3=ADa e Historia
> Moneda 16, Col. Centro.
> Mexico, 06060, D.F.
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