Freshwater Availability and Prehistoric Settlement Patterns on California’s Northern Channel Islands
An important variable that influenced prehistoric human settlement patterns on California’s northern Channel Islands was the availability of freshwater. Existing models of settlement use watershed size as a proxy for water availability. However, in semi-arid regions, this approach has limitations because ephemeral streams common in these environments may lose much or all of their flow to groundwater. We have developed a hydrological model that incorporates measured and modeled geospatial/temporal data for climate (precipitation, solar radiation, wind speed, relative humidity, temperature), soils, vegetation, and topography to simulate the complex land-surface-groundwater behavior of island hydrology. We also discuss the role of fog and fog-drip as a freshwater input into this system. We discuss the implications of this model for the location of permanent settlements on the northern Channel Islands during the past 5,000 years. Climate projections are constructed as input to the model for hypothetical 100-year intervals that represent wet, dry, and average 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 http://www.tdar.org/SAA2015 for instructions and more information.
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Re-evaluating the Marginality of California's Islands: Implications for Archaeological Interpretation •
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015)
Cite this Record
Freshwater Availability and Prehistoric Settlement Patterns on California’s Northern Channel Islands. Christopher Jazwa, Lorne Leonard, Chris Duffy, Douglas Kennett. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395126)
min long: -125.464; min lat: 32.101 ; max long: -114.214; max lat: 42.033 ;