Mammalian Enamel Stable Isotopic (δ13C, δ18O) Evidence for Environmental Change during the MSA-LSA Transition at the Kisese II Rockshelter, Tanzania
This is an abstract from the "SAA 2019: General Sessions" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.
Environmental perturbations are invoked as an influence of hominin speciation, dispersal and technological innovations. Archaeological occurrences preserving the transition from the Middle Stone Age to the Later Stone Age are critical to gauging environmental influences of human adaptations, yet there is a dearth of well-dated sites in eastern Africa. The Kisese II Rockshelter (Tanzania) has a chronologically constrained ≥ 6-m-thick stratigraphy spanning the MSA/LSA transition and includes lithic artifacts, ostrich egg shell beads, evidence for red ochre use, and hominin and non-hominin skeletal and dental remains. Here we isotopically (δ13C, δ18O) analyze 109 bulk enamel samples representing 30 herbivorous and omnivorous mammal species in order to characterize the site’s environments throughout the succession. Kisese II shows an increase in the percentage of C3-browsers at the expense of C4-grazers and C3-C4-mixed feeders through time. Kisese II faunal δ18O values are slightly higher during the latest (Holocene-aged) archaeological occurrence potentially indicating increased aridity and/or changes in rainfall δ18O values. Kisese II faunal enamel isotopic data stand in contrast to those of the comparably aged archaeological site at Lukenya Hill (Kenya). Local controls on environments and latitudinal differences in vegetation structure and water availability potentially linked to the African Humid Period are discussed.
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Mammalian Enamel Stable Isotopic (δ13C, δ18O) Evidence for Environmental Change during the MSA-LSA Transition at the Kisese II Rockshelter, Tanzania. Carley Quirin, Rhonda Quinn, Jason Lewis, Kathryn Ranhorn, Christian Tryon. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 449801)
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min long: 24.082; min lat: -26.746 ; max long: 56.777; max lat: 17.309 ;
Abstract Id(s): 24725