Macaw Husbandry in the Ancient Greater Southwest

Author(s): Randee Fladeboe

Year: 2016


The archaeological record of the American Southwest and North Mexico contains evidence that for hundreds of years, ancient peoples transported, kept and possibly bred tropical macaws at several major population centers. Archaeologists are still working to understand exactly how this was accomplished, but the fact that this evidence indicates aspects of macaw husbandry has been underappreciated. Ethological data on human and macaw interactions in similar contexts in the present can help inform the technological practices required of macaw husbandry in the past. Basic interaction sequences of care activities by human keepers are grouped into major "events" – maintenance events, feeding events, etc. This allows assessment of the behavioral properties and capacities of macaws within various interactions and lends insight into past husbandry practices.

Cite this Record

Macaw Husbandry in the Ancient Greater Southwest. Randee Fladeboe. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 405240)

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Spatial Coverage

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