Grasses Are Always Greener: The Technology of Herding and Mobility among Neolithic Pastoralists in South Arabia
Author(s): Abigail Buffington
This is an abstract from the "Farm to Table Archaeology: The Operational Chain of Food Production" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.
The development of pastoralism still features a number of gaps in the archaeological record. Principally, herders invest in the maintenance of a resource base capable of supporting their herds. While pursuing these resources through both intensive and extensive land management strategies, they impact vegetation communities and the future viability of husbandry of both animals and plants in a given location. Microfossil proxies of animal diets can inform on these practices, and when considering time, their effects. In mountainous southeastern Yemen, a rock-shelter encampment was discovered dating to the Early to Mid-Holocene featuring domestic animal remains earlier than any others in the south Arabian region. Through the later phases at this site, Manayzah, a number of superimposed burned dung mats were noted, suggestive of livestock corralling. Phytolith analysis of these levels both in intra-site terms in comparison to other combustion features supports a model of grazing and supplemental foddering of mixed herds. Broad similarity of assemblages and statistically distinction of these elements provide evidence of continuity in pastoral practice, despite multiple phases of occupation and abandonment.
Cite this Record
Grasses Are Always Greener: The Technology of Herding and Mobility among Neolithic Pastoralists in South Arabia. Abigail Buffington. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 452053)
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
min long: 26.191; min lat: 12.211 ; max long: 73.477; max lat: 42.94 ;
Abstract Id(s): 26035