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An Assessment of small game exploitation at Gruta Nova da Columbeira in the Middle Paleolithic (Portugal)

Author(s): Milena Carvalho

Year: 2017

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Summary

In Europe, differences in subsistence between Neanderthals and anatomically modern humans are one of the ways in which archaeologists detect behavioral shifts in the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition. In this paper, I present faunal and stable isotopic analyses of Oryctolagus cuniculus (the European wild rabbit) from levels C.6, C.7, C.8 and C.9 of Gruta Nova da Columbeira, a Mousterian cave site located in central Portugal. I use these data to test two subsistence models: 1. Anatomically modern humans gained a competitive advantage over Neanderthals by exploiting broad-spectrum diet type prey items such as the rabbit (as in Fa et al. 2013) 2. Neanderthals practiced a broad-spectrum diet in local environments exemplified by sites such as Bolomor Cave (as in Blasco & Peris 2012). To conclude, I explore whether central Portugal displays the same shift in subsistence patterns from the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition as elsewhere in Europe and if using the concept of a transition is an efficient way to track human adaptation to environmental change in the Pleistocene.


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An Assessment of small game exploitation at Gruta Nova da Columbeira in the Middle Paleolithic (Portugal). Milena Carvalho. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430156)


Keywords

Geographic Keywords
Europe


Spatial Coverage

min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16311

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