Developing Regional Isotopic Baselines to Trace Resource Acquisition Patterns in the Mesa Verde Area of the American Southwest
The analysis of strontium and oxygen isotopes in archaeological bone is commonly used to trace human mobility and migrations. We are using this isotopic approach to reconstruct changes in human access to large animal resources acquired through trading and hunting in the Mesa Verde area between 750-1280 AD. Current work is focused on determining the isotopic variability of the complex geology surrounding the primary study area. Isotopic analyses have been conducted on non-cultural archaeological rodent bones from surrounding regions, which, due to their limited home ranges, can be used as indicators of the bioavailable strontium isotopic signature of their local environment. Modern plant leaves have been used as a corresponding source for local isotopic signatures and in locations where rodent bones could not be acquired. While focusing on strontium analysis, we also address oxygen isotopic signatures of collected plant materials, faunal bone and local water sources providing additional complementary provenance information. The baselines determined from this work will be used to address the provenance of archaeofaunal bones in Mesa Verde assemblages, including those of rabbits, turkey, and deer.
Cite this Record
Developing Regional Isotopic Baselines to Trace Resource Acquisition Patterns in the Mesa Verde Area of the American Southwest. Amanda Werlein, Joan Coltrain, Jeffrey Ferguson, Virginie Renson, Karen Schollmeyer. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 442794)
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
North America: Southwest United States
min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;
Abstract Id(s): 22247