behavioral ecology (Other Keyword)

1-16 (16 Records)

Behavioral ecology of Neolithic transformations in Taiwan: Ceramics and settlements (2017)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Pei-Lin Yu.

Six thousand years ago, encounters between Paleolithic Taiwanese foragers and seafaring farmers of Mainland China ushered in a new agricultural lifeway. Two hallmarks of the early Taiwanese Neolithic are sedentary settlements and red cord-marked ceramic wares. How quickly did foragers adopt these cultural traits? Did they adopt them together or separately? Archaeological data from the Neolithic transition are scarce, but ethnographic information suggests that the rate of change is affected by...


Big reasons to eat small fishes: Nutritional composition and subsistence decisions along California’s Central Coast (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Cristie Boone.

While behavioral ecology approaches to human subsistence in archaeology often focus on calories, nutritional content is another aspect that can influence a resource’s desirability. In particular, fats are an important dietary source of easily digestible calories for hunter-gatherers. Proximate composition (fat, protein, moisture, and ash) is presented here for several fish species commonly found in archaeological sites along the central California coast, and combined with data drawn from the...


Contact-Period Settlement Changes in Eastern North America: A Test of the Ideal Free and Ideal Despotic Distribution Models (2017)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Elic Weitzel. Daniel Plekhov.

Archaeological and historic data suggest that prior to European Contact, Eastern North America was heavily populated. However, within a century of Contact, the indigenous population was decimated. To explore one of many behavioral changes brought about by this demographic collapse, we model indigenous settlement in Eastern North America pre- and post-Contact as a function of environmental productivity. We hypothesize that if post-Contact settlement differed from pre-Contact, two scenarios are...


Decisions in the Desert (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Tom Flanigan.

This is a study of stone tool raw material procurement utilizing archaeological sites located in and around the Sheeprock Mountains in north-central Utah. In an effort to apply Metcalfe’s and Barlow’s "Field Processing Model" (1992), to prehistoric lithic raw material procurement, the researcher collected culturally deposited obsidian from archaeological sites in and around the Sheeprock Mountains. Over the course of 3 field sessions from 2011-2013, 250 samples of obsidian lithic debitage were...


Ecology, Territoriality, and the Emergence of Acorn and Maize Economies in Western North America (2017)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Brian Codding. Erick Robinson. Nathan Stevens. Terry Jones. Robert Kelly.

Ethnographic populations throughout Western North American sometimes relied on strategies and institutions to protect resources, patches, and territories for exclusive use. But explaining why and identifying when these exclusionary practices emerged (and dissolved) in the past remains difficult. Based on predictions from ecological and evolutionary theory, individuals should only engage in territorial behavior when the benefits of exclusive use, such as subsistence gains, are worth the costs of...


The Faces of Intensification: An Application of Selection Thinking (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Steven Simms. Andrew Ugan.

The application of HBE and selection thinking can shed light on the study of intensification. This vantage treats intensification as a process, not a threshold, and treats behavior not as normative cultural forms (e.g., "intensive farmers"), but as fluctuating frequencies among alternative adaptive strategies comprising a behavioral mix that may be culturally encoded. There are many ways to work hard. Here we employ case studies from Mendoza, Argentina, and the Great Basin, Southwest, and...


Fetching Firewood: Access to fuels as a constraint for prehistoric settlement (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Kate Magargal.

In arid, topographically variable desert environments, resources important to humans are typically distributed heterogeneously. This variability required prehistoric humans to evaluate trade-offs over accessing spatially distinct patches. A potentially important and largely unexplored resource in these trade-offs is firewood. This work examines the distribution of archaeological sites along the watershed of the Dolores River of southwestern Colorado and southeastern Utah. With new archaeological...


An Ideal Free Settlement Perspective on Residential Positioning in the San Francisco Bay Area (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Adrian Whitaker. Brian Byrd.

We present an Ideal Free Distribution Model to explore the successful establishment and spread of hunter-gatherer residential settlements around the perimeter of San Francisco Bay, California. Our objective is to illuminate underlying ecological and social factors that best explain the spatial distribution of occupation in the region. Our model determines relative habitat suitability based on a series of environmental factors including drainage catchment size, rainfall, terrestrial productivity,...


Modeling the Replacement of Atlatl by Bow Weaponry: Technological Learning Curves and Task Differentiation in Prehistory (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Brigid Grund.

Understanding technological replacement is a ubiquitous problem in archaeology. Modeling the transition from atlatl to self bow has implications for elucidating the driving mechanisms behind why and how prehistoric culture change occurs worldwide. At different periods of human prehistory, atlatls were replaced by self bows as primary hunting weapons on all continents except Australia. Previous scholars have hypothesized that this shift may have occurred when changes in environment/subsistence...


Numic Fire: Modeling the Effects of Anthropogenic Fire on Foraging Decisions in the Great Basin (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Kenneth Vernon. Kate Magargal. Ashley Grimes. Will Rath. Brian Codding.

Ethnohistoric accounts suggest that fire played a significant role in Great Basin foraging strategies; however, there is little quantitative data on why, where, or when people burned. To begin to fill this gap, we develop a behavioral ecological model designed to test predictions about the impact of anthropogenic fires on hunter-gatherer diet breadth. We conduct an ethnographic test of the model using historic band-level variation in prey choice coupled with ecological data on variation in the...


The Problem of Geographic Circumscription, Population Aggregation, and Ideal Free Distribution on Isla Cedros, Baja California, Mexico (2016)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Dustin Merrick. Matthew Des Lauriers.

In the last half-century, studies using human behavioral ecology (HBE) have made significant headway in modeling how humans in the past would have adapted to the environmental constraints surrounding them. There has been much less progress in terms of examining the socio-political pressures hunter-gatherers in the past would have felt in their daily lives. Factors driving choices in these models are often based on an underlying assumption of ideal free distribution; however, one is hard-pressed...


Resource Structure, Economic Defendability, and Conflict in Rapa Nui and Rapa Iti, East Polynesia – an agent-based modeling approach (2016)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Robert DiNapoli. Terry Hunt. Alex Morrison. Brian Lane. Carl Lipo.

East Polynesian populations are closely related both culturally and genetically, yet their islands are environmentally diverse. The common ancestry and strong environmental differences make East Polynesia uniquely suited to the study of divergent sociocultural evolution. Following human colonization, populations diverged in subsistence practices, settlement patterns, ritual architecture, intensity of competition, and social organization. Here we explore differences in the intensity of conflict...


To Guard or Not to Guard? Variations in Territoriality Within Hunter-Gatherer Societies (2017)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Christopher Haisley. Ashley Parker. Christopher Parker. Brian Codding.

Variation in territory size, population density, and residential mobility among small scale hunting and gathering societies tends to co-vary with territorial behaviors. Specifically, groups living in larger areas, at lower population densities with higher mobility are less likely to exhibit territorial behavior than their counterparts in smaller areas. Based on models from behavioral ecology, we suggest that this variation is due to underlying levels of environmental productivity: where...


The View from Rapa: Behavioral Ecology and Fortifications in Polynesia (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Brian Lane.

Fortifications are found in the archaeological record around the world. Studies of fortifications on the landscape tend to focus on aspects of human territoriality, especially in relation to conflict, economics, and resources. This paper takes a Human Behavioral Ecology approach to territoriality and applies the use of viewsheds, as derived from a GIS database, to the examination of a central resource. Rapa, Austral Islands, French Polynesia, is often cited as a classic example of an island...


When to defend? Optimal Territoriality across the Numic Homeland (2017)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Ashley Parker. Christopher Parker. Brian Codding.

Research exploring the complex human decisions that lead to territoriality have largely focused on defensibility. Here we explore territoriality using an ecological and evolutionary model from behavioral ecology: the marginal value theorem (MVT). Based on the principal of diminishing returns, the MVT predicts that the utility of a plot of land will decrease with each additional plot, therefore people should defend an area only at a threshold when it becomes energetically beneficial within the...


Wood foraging in the tree-limited environment of the Cape Floral Region of South Africa (2015)
DOCUMENT Citation Only Chloe Atwater. Jan de Vynck. Alastair Potts. Jayne Wilkins. Kim Hill.

Wood is an essential resource for hunter-gatherers. It is necessary for cooking fuel, heat, and potentially safety, and hence influences site location choice and group size. Due to a low diversity and abundance of trees, wood may have been a limited resource for early humans in the Cape Floral Region (CFR) of South Africa. Drawing from behavior ecology foraging models, experiments with modern wood foragers were conducted to test this hypothesis. Foragers were observed collecting indigenous wood...