We work on an early archaeological site in South America (Pampean region,
Argentina), named Paso Otero 5, that is dated ca. 10.450 years BP. At least
12 genus of extinct fauna have been recovered in association to 2 (may be 3)
"fish-tail" projectile points. A total of ca. 80,000 complete and fragmented
bones of extinct megamammals and modern species were recorded. The presence
of such faunal diversity at the site is explained by a) the reoccupation of
the same place for specific activities (hunting and processing) and b) by
the use of bone as fuel. The large amount and the variety of
burnt/calcinated and mixed thermal alteration stages of bones are not only
the result of using the megamammals as a food resource but also as raw
material for firing. The results from pollen and silicophytoliths analyses
reveals that ca. 10,400 years BP no cover vegetation exits and only that the
only present vegetation would have been ruderal taxa. Clearly, wood for
firing was difficult to obtain and bone could be an alternative resource for
There are at least two publications in english and a couple of papers in
spanish of the site where it is mentioned the use of bone as fuel. The
publications in english are the following:
1. Martínez, G., M. A. Gutierrez y J. L. Prado. New archaeological evidences
from the late Pleistocene/early Holocene Paso Otero 5 site (Pampean region,
Argentina). Current Research in the Pleistocene 21: 16-18. ISSN 8755-898X.
2. Martínez, G. 2001. "Fish-tail" projectile points and megamammals in the
Pampean region of Argentina. Antiquity 75 (289): 523-528.
I have the pdf version of the first paper and you are welcome to ask for it
if you want it. You are also welcome to ask for spanish literature.
María A. Gutierrez
Facultad de Ciencias Sociales (UNCPBA)
Avda del Valle 5737
B7400JWI Olavarría (Buenos Aires)
E-mail: [log in to unmask]
----- Original Message -----
From: "Curl, Julie" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, July 28, 2005 12:20 PM
Subject: [ZOOARCH] bones as fuel
Does anyone know of any reports that refer to burnt bones as bones being
used as fuel? I have found modern references for bones being used as fuel,
but no proper archaeological evidence for it so far.
Any help much appreciated,
Faunal Remains Specialist
Norfolk Archaeological Unit
13-15 Cathedral Street
Tel: 01603 - 878206
Mobile: 07870 818752
E-mail: [log in to unmask]
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