Testing a Locally-Adaptive Model of Archaeological Potential (LAMAP) to Assess Ancient Maya Settlement Location and Density in Belize’s North Vaca Plateau.
In 2012, a settlement survey was conducted on the North Vaca Plateau in west-central Belize as part of the Social Archaeology Research Program (SARP). The survey was intended to test the predictions of a new archaeological potential assessment method called the Locally-Adaptive Model of Archaeological Potential (LAMAP). A LAMAP assessment was produced for Minanha, a Classic Maya civic-ceremonial center, which served as the first case study for the new method. When conducting the survey to test the LAMAP predictions, however, the survey team found that modern forest cover made it impossible to complete a survey with sufficient coverage to adequately validate the model in a reasonable amount of time. Thus, a LiDAR survey was commissioned to supplement the field results. The LiDAR imagery proved very useful for identifying cultural features beneath the canopy with much greater efficiency than could be accomplished using traditional methods. In this paper we report a comprehensive test of the LAMAP assessment using a combined LiDAR and traditional survey dataset. We find that our understandings of Maya settlement patterns, and our ability to assess locational models like LAMAP, are significantly improved with the use of the combined dataset.
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Testing a Locally-Adaptive Model of Archaeological Potential (LAMAP) to Assess Ancient Maya Settlement Location and Density in Belize’s North Vaca Plateau.. Kong Cheong, Chris Carleton, Dan Savage, James Conolly, Gyles Iannone. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397856)
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min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;