JiscMail Logo
Email discussion lists for the UK Education and Research communities

Help for ZOOARCH Archives


ZOOARCH Archives

ZOOARCH Archives


ZOOARCH@JISCMAIL.AC.UK


View:

Message:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Topic:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

By Author:

[

First

|

Previous

|

Next

|

Last

]

Font:

Proportional Font

LISTSERV Archives

LISTSERV Archives

ZOOARCH Home

ZOOARCH Home

ZOOARCH  2005

ZOOARCH 2005

Options

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Subscribe or Unsubscribe

Log In

Log In

Get Password

Get Password

Subject:

Re: Juha Savolainen's query

From:

Prof TP O'Connor <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Prof TP O'Connor <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Wed, 9 Mar 2005 09:57:59 -0000

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (114 lines)

Oliver's point about the dearth of active scavengers in modern UK is
well taken (though foxes do their best to make up for the shortfall!).
Answering Juha's query really needs to start with the general sources
and work outwards. Lyman's Vertebrate Taphonomy has already been
recommended, and Oxbow have just published Biosphere to Lithosphere, a
compilation of papers on bone taphonomy from the 2002 ICAZ conference.
For those who haven't found it yet, the on-line Journal of Taphonomy
also has pertinent papers, alongside ones on brachiopods and trilobites.
The truthful answer to Juha's question is that we don't really know, but
we have some understanding of some of the processes involved. If I may
be excused a digression into Rumsfeldisch, there will also be some
unknown unknowns; factors that we don't even realise that we ought to
know about but don't. And that is what makes vertebrate taphonomy so
interesting.

Terry O'Connor

-----Original Message-----
From: Analysis of animal remains from archaeological sites
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Oliver Brown
Sent: 09 March 2005 00:56
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ZOOARCH] Juha Savolainen's query


Forgive me for replying to Juha's query onlist (if that's a word), but I
suspect that this may be of interest to a few.

More often than not it seems that diagenesis is seen as the major cause
for absences from faunal records, but field research in many places
continues to show scavenging to account for the removal/destruction of
the vast majority of faunal remains.

In two contrasting studies:
- Behrensmeyer & al (at Amboseli, Kenya) compared extant bird species
and sizes with surface collections of bones and found that smaller
species were less well represented in the bones and suggested that this
was because the bones of smaller birds are more fragile and therefore
break down sooner.
- In some of my research (semi-arid inland NSW) looking at the fates of
bird carcasses between 9 and 420 grams and a number of other larger
carcasses found that most animal remains are very quickly removed by
scavengers but that removal was far greater for smaller remains.

Interestingly, when both are graphed with weight and presence/absence
(albeit at different timescales) as the two axes, they are very similar.

So, we have different explanations for what is essentially the same
phenomenon - and what is as far as I can see, the crux of Juha's
question. This in turn suggests that while I doubt that there is an
archaeozoologist out there who doesn't have some kind of answer for
Juha, I doubt that any two of those answers are often the same.

A quick final point for a largely British audience:
- In a country where the sight of a kite, raven or eagle is now greeted
with great excitement outside of Wales or Scotland; dogs and pigs (once
free-ranging) are safely behind fences; and larger facultatively
scavenging predators are locally extinct, the role of scavengers in
shaping faunal assemblages would be very easy to underestimate.


REF: Behrensmeyer, A. K., C. T. Stayton, and R. E. Chapman. 2003.
Taphonomy and ecology of modern avifaunal remains from Amboseli Park,
Kenya. Paleobiology 29:52-70.



>
> Dear Zooarch,
>
> =20
>
> My name is Juha Savolainen and unlike almost all (?) the list members,

> I = am a complete layman in zooarchaeology/archaeozoology (actually, I

> earn = my living by teaching philosophy and critical thinking, if that

> is of = any interest to anybody). I have been a lurker here for more
> than two = years and I have greatly admired the spirit of friendly
> cooperation that = is evident here (and so rare in many scholarly and
> scientific = communities). I have a rather general question that has
> vexed my mind = for some time and I would be very pleased if Zooarch
> could cast some = illumination on this question.
>
> =20
>
> Briefly, we all know that there is no simple and uniform relationship
> = between the preservation of animal remains (bones etc.) and the =
> representation of such animals in historical documents, pictures, =
> figurines etc. in geographical areas at specified time periods.
> However, = it seems to me that there is no simple and uniform
> relationship between = the preservation of animal remains and the
> presence of such animals in = geographical areas at specified time
> periods either. So, if this is so, = may I ask you what are the main
> causes contributing to this differential = preservation of faunal
> remains?
>
> =20
>
> Best regards,
>
> Juha Savolainen
>

--
Oliver Brown
PhD candidate
Archaeology, A22, University of Sydney, 2006, NSW
lab:(02) 9036 5127 / mob: 0427 279 675 / hm: 9665 2073

----------------------------------------------------------------
This message was sent using IMP, the Internet Messaging Program.

Top of Message | Previous Page | Permalink

JiscMail Tools


RSS Feeds and Sharing


Advanced Options


Archives

September 2020
August 2020
July 2020
June 2020
May 2020
April 2020
March 2020
February 2020
January 2020
December 2019
November 2019
October 2019
September 2019
August 2019
July 2019
June 2019
May 2019
April 2019
March 2019
February 2019
January 2019
December 2018
November 2018
October 2018
September 2018
August 2018
July 2018
June 2018
May 2018
April 2018
March 2018
February 2018
January 2018
December 2017
November 2017
October 2017
September 2017
August 2017
July 2017
June 2017
May 2017
April 2017
March 2017
February 2017
January 2017
December 2016
November 2016
October 2016
September 2016
August 2016
July 2016
June 2016
May 2016
April 2016
March 2016
February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
January 2015
December 2014
November 2014
October 2014
September 2014
August 2014
July 2014
June 2014
May 2014
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007
2006
2005
2004
2003
2002
2001
2000


JiscMail is a Jisc service.

View our service policies at https://www.jiscmail.ac.uk/policyandsecurity/ and Jisc's privacy policy at https://www.jisc.ac.uk/website/privacy-notice

For help and support help@jisc.ac.uk

Secured by F-Secure Anti-Virus CataList Email List Search Powered by the LISTSERV Email List Manager