How Firewood Access Structures Settlement Patterns

Author(s): Kate Magargal

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Fifty Years of Fretwell and Lucas: Archaeological Applications of Ideal Distribution Models" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

In desert environments resources are typically distributed heterogeneously. This variability required prehistoric humans to evaluate trade-offs over accessing spatially distinct patches. A potentially important and largely unexplored resource in these trade-offs is firewood. This work examines the distribution of archaeological sites along the watershed of the Dolores River of southwestern Colorado and southeastern Utah. Coupling a novel extension of the ideal free distribution model with new archaeological survey data, I examine how the distribution of sites varies with inferred access to firewood, and other critical resources, including water and food. The results illustrate that foragers experience a spatially-imposed trade-off when optimizing settlement locations. The implications of this under-explored issue are addressed and future directions for research are discussed.

Cite this Record

How Firewood Access Structures Settlement Patterns. Kate Magargal. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 452082)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 23308