Comparing bone structure and domestic sheep management strategies using microcomputed tomography (microCT)
Bone structure is known to reflect behavioral differences related to locomotion, diet, and activity patterns. We present new data using microcomputed tomography (microCT) to analyze cortical and trabecular bone structure on samples of modern domestic sheep bones from individuals with known biogeographies and life histories. Indicators of skeletal robusticity, such as thicker cortical bone, higher trabecular bone volume fraction, and thicker trabeculae, reflect consistently higher bone strain and therefore should be found in sheep that are moved frequently and/or over long distances. In contrast, penned sheep will have relatively gracile skeletons, reflecting lower activity levels and less movement. By comparing penned and transhumant modern sheep, we assess the viability of this approach to identify domestic animal management strategies in the past.
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Comparing bone structure and domestic sheep management strategies using microcomputed tomography (microCT). Heather Hilson, Sarah B. McClure, Timothy M. Ryan. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 429807)
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Abstract Id(s): 16403