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Large Bones, Small Bones, Big Bones, Little Bones: A Quantitative Analyses of Sampling Bias in the Early Paleoindian Zooarchaeological Record

Author(s): Joseph DeAngelis

Year: 2016

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Summary

It has been suggested that the Early Paleoindian archaeofaunal record is biased against small mammals because larger mammals are easier to detect in the archaeological record. It has also been suggested that remains of small mammals would have been more abundant if careful excavation procedures would have been employed. For this poster, I present a quantitative analysis of the Early Paleoindian archaeofaunal record in the continental United States by testing the hypothesis that the zooarchaeological record is biased against small mammals. I do this by analyzing taxonomic and body size diversity of Early Paleoindian zooarchaeological assemblages based upon the year in which they were excavated. If the Early Paleoindian record is bias against smaller mammals, then it would be reasonable to suspect that sites excavated earliest would consist mainly of large bodied mammalian remains while more recent sites that may have been more carefully excavated would consist of numerous types of taxa of all body sizes. The results show that this is not the case with numerous different types of taxa of all body sizes present in some of the earlier excavated sites while sites with large and small mammalian remains have been consistently excavated throughout time.


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Large Bones, Small Bones, Big Bones, Little Bones: A Quantitative Analyses of Sampling Bias in the Early Paleoindian Zooarchaeological Record. Joseph DeAngelis. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404561)


Keywords


Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America