Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Bennett’s wallaby marrow quality vs quantity: Evaluating human decision-making and seasonal occupation in.

Similar presentations

Presentation on theme: "Bennett’s wallaby marrow quality vs quantity: Evaluating human decision-making and seasonal occupation in."— Presentation transcript:

1 Bennett’s wallaby marrow quality vs quantity: Evaluating human decision-making and seasonal occupation in late Pleistocene Tasmania Jillian Garvey Archaeology Program, La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia

2 Archaeology of Late Pleistocene SW Tasmania
First site identified during the late 1970s- KUTIKINA CAVE. Kutikina excavated by Rhys Jones and colleagues 1981 (Kiernan et al. Nature 1983:31). Followed by the Southern Forests Archaeological Project in 1990s by La Trobe University (Richard Cosgrove, Jim Allen and colleagues) excavated several more caves. e.g. Nunamira, Bone Cave, Warreen, Pallawa Trounta In 2005 the Kutikina faunal assemblage was analysed. Recent Bennett’s wallaby teeth annuli studies indicate seasonal use of the landscape (Pike-Tay, Cosgrove & Garvey 2008 JAS). Top left hand corner: map of Australia with the southern island state of Tasmania shaded. Main figure: Tasmania with southwest region indicated and Kutikina Cave marked by the star. Kutikina

3 SW Settlement Pattern & Chronology (Uncal 14C) 35,000-10,000BP
Parmerpar Meethaner SW Settlement Pattern & Chronology (Uncal 14C) 35,000-10,000BP Warreen ,780-18,630 Parmerpar Meethaner , ORS , ,500 Nunamira , ,630 Bone Cave , ,700 Pallawa Trounta , ,410 Kutikina Cave , ,840 Mackintosh ,000 Southwest Tasmania characterised by: >950,000 bones analysed Bennett’s wallabies dominate Preference for the larger hindlimbs Femora and tibiae always split open

4 Kutikina Cave excavated 1981
1m2 wide, 1.3m deep excavated in 3 units Volume cubic metres, wet sieved (3mm) 11 C14 dates- 22,000-15,000 (LGM) Only published paper on Kutikina excavation or analysis was preliminary report in 1983 Nature: approx 250,000 bones & 30,000 stone tools. Unpublished preliminary report on faunal sample by Geering 1983. Jones 1987 1981 Kutikina excavation Jones 1987 Inspecting Kutikina Cave, 1981 Jones 1987 Tasmania was joined to mainland Australia during the late Pleistocene

5 Parallels between Northern and Southern Hemisphere’s during LGM
Similar: Stone tools Hearths (fireplaces) Hunting patterns Butchering patterns Bennett’s wallaby Macropus rufogriseus “The specific targetting onto reindeer by the European hunters bears comparison with the similar emphasis on wallabies by subsub-Antarctic palaeo-Tasmanians” (Kiernan et al. Nature 1983:31).

6 Bennett’s wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus)
Also known as the Red-necked wallaby Small wallaby weighing kg Found in SE mainland Australia & Tasmania In Tasmania: Seasonal breeders Widespread distribution Common in zoos and as pets in Europe & Nth America: quiet nature easy to breed excellent lawnmowers Male Red kangaroo (70kg) with female grey (45kg) Female (10kg) Bennett’s wallaby Tamar wallaby (8kg) with joey Kangaroo skeleton

7 Typical spit from Kutikina- Bennett’s wallaby dominates

8 Kutikina results 269,459 bone fragments, weighing 46.11kg were analysed (Garvey 2006). 28,210 or 12% identified to taxon &/or element. 21 species identified, 13 of which are potential human prey taxa. Of the potential prey BW >92% (MNI 44), Wombats <7% (MNI 10), minor medium elements. Emu and grey kangaroo identified.

9 Taphonomic history Kutikina Cave medium mammals small mammals
-humans? -devil, thylacine or quolls? -natural death ? bones relatively complete = owls Kutikina Cave humans selected whole animals humans selected certain elements such as the lower long bones humans selected entire wombats Wombat (7%) kangaroo & emu Bennett’s wallaby ( >75%) Images from Van Dyck & Strahan 2008

10 % of Bennett’s wallaby body parts at Kutikina Cave
Bennett’s wallaby represents <92% of the identified fauna NISP 6662, MNI 44 (per Unit) Hindlimb dominates. Axial and manus under represented. Numerous cut marks on hindlimbs. Tibiae and femora always smashed open. 4th and 5th metatarsals, large phalanges, calcaneum often smashed open. Garvey 2006 % of Bennett’s wallaby body parts at Kutikina Cave Representation of Bennett’s wallaby body parts in the three Units at Kutikina Cave. NB if the wallabies were brought back to the cave whole you would expect an even distribution along the 0 line.

11 Kutikina wallaby bones
Garvey 200x Kutikina wallaby bones access marrow B cut marks A A percussion A bone point A- distal tibia B- fibula C- pes phalange D- distal humerus chop? marks A access marrow size range D cut mark location C

12 Why the dominance of Bennett’s wallaby split hindlimb longbones?
1. Marrow/meat quality? and/or 2. Marrow/meat quantity? Processing time?

13 Marrow and meat quantity: economic utility
Marrow and meat quantity was evaluated by Garvey 2010 Quaternary International 211(1-2): It seemed that humans were not under selective pressure concerning which parts of the animals they transported. Ignored some of the larger ‘meaty’ elements such as the sacrum, preferring the hindlimbs which were found to not only carry large amounts of flesh but also the greatest volume of bone marrow.

14 Bennett’s wallaby economic utility: Meat Utility Index (MUI)
The %MUI for the 4 wallabies and the mean. indicates the highest body part. Garvey 2010, Quaternary International 211(1-2): WHERE: CAU- caudal, CER- cervical, CLA- clavicle, CRA- cranial, FEM- femur, HUM- humerus, LUM- lumbar, MAND- mandible, MANU- manus, PEL- pelvis, PES- pes, RIB- rib, SAC- sacrum, SCA- scapula, STE- sternum, TIB- tibia, THO- thoracic, ULN- ulna

15 Bennett’s wallaby economic utility: Minimum Number of Animals (MAU) vs Meat Utility Index (MUI)
Where RED- high in meat/marrow & common in Kutikina; BLUE- those high in meat/marrow & rare in Kutikina Garvey 2010, Quaternary International 211(1-2): WHERE: CAU- caudal, CER- cervical, CLA- clavicle, CRA- cranial, FEM- femur, HUM- humerus, LUM- lumbar, MAND- mandible, MANU- manus, PEL- pelvis, PES- pes, RIB- rib, SAC- sacrum, SCA- scapula, STE- sternum, TIB- tibia, THO- thoracic, ULN- ulna

16 Marrow and meat quality: marrow composition
Fatty acid analysis, in particular oleic acid (a monounsaturated omega-9 fatty acid), argued to be a good indicator of unsaturated fat quality (Binford 1978). It has been found that in caribou, and ungulates in general, unsaturated fats increase as you move away from the body core temperature or the heart (Meng et al. 1969; West and Shaw 1975). High % unsaturated fatty acids in the distal limbs causes lowering a of melting temperature and oiler marrow (Irving et al. 1957; Morin 2007). While extensive work has occurred on ungulates, there has been no analysis of marsupial bone marrow. Test to see if a similar pattern occurs in the Bennett’s wallaby. How does age, sex, altitude, and season effect bone marrow quality?

17 Marrow and tissue composition
Total Fat (FOLCH) and Fatty Acid Profile (FAMES) determined. 14 fatty acids measured per sample. Fatty acid concentration of wallaby bone marrow decreased in saturated fats distally Largest fatty acid changes occurred in the monounsaturated Oleic acid (C 18=1) and Palmitoleic (C16:1) both increased distally Saturated Palmitic acid (C16:0) and Stearic acid (C18:0) both decreased accordingly These results are similar to that identified in caribou Rangifer tarandus (Meng et al. 1969), Dall sheep Ovis dalli (West and Shaw 1975), and in the desert bighorn sheep Ovis canadensis cremnobates (Turner 1979).

18 Distribution of unsaturated fatty acids in the Bennett’s wallaby
After Hume et al. 1987 Caribou Wallaby after Meng et al. 1969; © 2010 Falling Pixel ltd Morin 2007 Caribou Bennett’s wallaby

19 Bennett’s Wallaby Hindlimb
C B A D Note: the dark red saturated fat in the femur marrow, with the unsaturated marrow very pale in the distal tibia, i.e. increase in unsaturated fatty acids as you move away from the body core temperature or the heart.

20 Wallaby Collection Areas
Western Tiers Buckland Western Tiers m.a.s.l alpine grasslands & herbfields cool summers & cold winters Buckland m.a.s.l open dry sclerophyll variable climate warm to hot summers cool to cold winters Tissue samples collected per wallaby (where possible): 1) tibia marrow 2) brain tissue 3) femur tissue Seasonal variation: 1) Summer collection- February 2008 2) Autumn collection- May 2008 3) Winter collection- July 2008 4) Spring collection- October 2008 Maydena Maydena m.a.s.l wet sclerophyll high rainfall warm summers & cool winters Note: the same 3 control areas as wallaby seasonal teeth annuli study by Pike-Tay et al. 2008, JAS

21 Collecting road kill Collecting marrow sample Collecting muscle sample
27 individual wallabies tested: 8 Buckland (4M & 4F) 9 Maydena (4M & 5F) 10 Western Lakes (5M & 5F) Collecting muscle sample 3 samples per wallaby (where possible) Brain tissue Hindlimb muscle Distal tibia marrow Collecting brain sample After Hume et al. 1987

22 Fatty acid results for the three collection areas
Marrow mean max temperature (oC) mean min temperature (oC) mean rainfall (mm) S- summer A- autumn W- winter Sp- spring Brain Meat Numbers on graph bars refer to individual wallabies

23 Preliminary conclusions
Bennett’s wallaby remained stable and reliable resource throughout the year irrespective of: Season Rainfall Temperature Sex Age

24 Future work observed in late Pleistocene SW Tasmania? Future work:
Then how do we explain hunting, butchery and seasonal patterns observed in late Pleistocene SW Tasmania? Future work: Processing time & butchery practices Ethnographic Experimental Other commodities Bone tools Fur Bone Density Scientific evaluation However tiny complete rodent bones indicates excellent preservation Human physiology & the role of fatty acids Environmental stress Sex, age, pregnancy, breastfeeding, etc Photo: R. Cosgrove

25 Acknowledgements Tasmanian Aboriginal Land & Sea Council (TALSC) and Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery (TMAG), Hobart. Rudy Frank, Peter Saad & Wei Ming, LTU, for technical assistance. Tiffany Liew, Seema Siddiqui & Grammatis Tsintzoglou for dissecting the wallabies in 2007. Georgia Bennett, Tiffany Liew, Richard Cosgrove, Coral Montero Lopez & Anthony Dall’Oste for collecting roadkill in 2008/2009. Helpful discussions with Richard Cosgrove, Anne Warren, Mike Archer, Eugene Morin, Jim O’Connell and reviewers of JAS paper. 2008 La Trobe University Research Grant for the economic anatomy and fatty acid analysis. LTU Postdoctoral Fellowship

26 References Binford, L.R., Nunamiut Ethnoarchaeology. New York, Academic Press. Garvey, J., Preliminary zooarchaeological interpretations from Kutikina Cave, southwest Tasmania. Australian Aboriginal Studies 2006(1), Garvey, J., Surviving an Ice Age: the zooarchaeology from southwest Tasmania. Palaios 22, Garvey, J., Economic anatomy of the Bennett’s wallaby (Macropus rufogriseus): implications for understanding human hunting strategies in late Pleistocene Tasmania. Quaternary International 211, Hume, I.D., Jarman, P.J., Renfree, M.B., Temple-Smith, P.D., Chapter 29: Macropodidae, in: Walton, D.W., Richardson, B.J. (Eds.), Fauna of Australia, Volume 1B Mammalia. Australian Government Publishing Service, Canberra, pp Jones, R., 1987 Ice-age hunters of the Tasmanian wilderness, Australian Geographic Oct/Dec 87:26-45. Kiernan, K., Jones, R., Ranson, D New evidence from Fraser Cave for glacial age man in south-west Tasmania, Nature 301:28-32. Meng, M.S., West, G.C., Irving, L., Fatty acid composition of caribou bone marrow. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology 30, , Morin, E., Fat composition and Nunamiut decision-making: a new look at the marrow and bone grease indices. Journal of Archaeological Science 34, Pike-Tay, A., Cosgrove, R., Garvey, J Systematic seasonal land use by late Pleistocene Tasmanian Aborigines. Journal of Archaeological Science. 35(9), Van Dyck, S. Strahan, R., The mammals of Australia, 3rd Edition. Reed New Holland, Sydney . Turner, J.C., Adaptive strategies of selective fatty acid deposition in the bone marrow of desert bighorn sheep. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology 62A, West, G., Shaw, D., Fatty acid composition of Dall sheep bone marrow. Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology 50B,

Download ppt "Bennett’s wallaby marrow quality vs quantity: Evaluating human decision-making and seasonal occupation in."

Similar presentations

Ads by Google