Patch choice model predictions for jackrabbit processing at Antelope Cave, Arizona

Author(s): Jacob Fisher

Year: 2015


Zooarchaeological research conducted under the conceptual realm of behavioral ecology has generally focused on the decision-making processes made during and immediately after hunting activities, at the cost of studies that explicitly attempt to predict culinary processing according to ecological or social conditions. It is critical that archaeologists develop tools for predicting and identifying culinary processing methods if our goal is to fully understand prehistoric foraging decisions. Since an individual animal is a clumped resource, a patch-choice model may be used to determine the amount of time a processor should spend on extracting nutritional benefits through cooking. The predictions from the patch choice model are tested using the faunal assemblage from Antelope Cave, northwestern Arizona. The assemblage is strongly dominated by jackrabbits with a high level of preservation that allowed for the building of inferences regarding acquisition, butchering, cooking, and consumption activities. As predicted by the patch choice model, the occupants of the site were maximizing the extraction of nutritional benefits from jackrabbits during a period of relatively poor environmental conditions.

SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit for instructions and more information.

Cite this Record

Patch choice model predictions for jackrabbit processing at Antelope Cave, Arizona. Jacob Fisher. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 394883)


Geographic Keywords
North America - Southwest

Spatial Coverage

min long: -115.532; min lat: 30.676 ; max long: -102.349; max lat: 42.033 ;