Big reasons to eat small fishes: Nutritional composition and subsistence decisions along California’s Central Coast
Author(s): 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 literature for some species that are also commercially important today. Results portray a wide range of fat content among fishes, indicating that in fat-limited environments, Clupeiformes (sardine, herring, and anchovy) might be more highly valued. Proportions of these small schooling species in Monterey Bay Area archaeological assemblages are discussed in relation to culture history, subsistence, and paleoclimate.
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
- "Bones are Not Enough": Research in Honor of Diane Gifford-Gonzalez •
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015)
Cite this Record
Big reasons to eat small fishes: Nutritional composition and subsistence decisions along California’s Central Coast. Cristie Boone. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395772)
North America - California
min long: -125.464; min lat: 32.101 ; max long: -114.214; max lat: 42.033 ;