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1.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33805498

RESUMEN

Scientific research is sometimes subjected to go through field study in places that are difficult to access. Where man has not managed to reach through traditional techniques, work at height systems offer new possibilities, provide safety in exploration and represent an excellent tool that allows a new insight of spaces object of scientific research. For more than 20 years, the Ukhupacha team has been studying, analyzing and selecting the teams, techniques and rope progression systems that best adapt to archaeological works in vertical environments. The projects studied are developed in Pre-Columbian cultures of the Andean mountain range, the high Amazon jungle and its surroundings. As a result, a new working methodology called Vertical Archaeology has been developed. It prioritizes user's safety by means of ropes when accessing archaeological research areas. The recommended and safest systems, techniques and personal protective equipment (PPE) are presented for each of the phases in which it is proposed to divide archaeological investigations: exploration, training and expedition. Using rope access techniques has allowed the safe study of new artistic and heritage aspects in ancient civilizations, as well as the approach of the scientific community to places that until now had remained hidden.


Asunto(s)
Arqueología , Humanos , Masculino
2.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 2175, 2021 04 12.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33846353

RESUMEN

In the 1970s, Paul Martin proposed that big game hunters armed with fluted projectile points colonized the Americas and drove the extinction of megafauna. Around fifty years later, the central role of humans in the extinctions is still strongly debated in North American archaeology, but little considered in South America. Here we analyze the temporal dynamic and spatial distribution of South American megafauna and fluted (Fishtail) projectile points to evaluate the role of humans in Pleistocene extinctions. We observe a strong relationship between the temporal density and spatial distribution of megafaunal species stratigraphically associated with humans and Fishtail projectile points, as well as with the fluctuations in human demography. On this basis we propose that the direct effect of human predation was the main factor driving the megafaunal decline, with other secondary, but necessary, co-occurring factors for the collapse of the megafaunal community.


Asunto(s)
Extinción Biológica , Paleontología , Dinámica Poblacional , Animales , Arqueología , Humanos , Mamíferos/fisiología , Probabilidad , América del Sur , Especificidad de la Especie , Factores de Tiempo
3.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 2227, 2021 04 14.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33854053

RESUMEN

Honey and other bee products were likely a sought-after foodstuff for much of human history, with direct chemical evidence for beeswax identified in prehistoric ceramic vessels from Europe, the Near East and Mediterranean North Africa, from the 7th millennium BC. Historical and ethnographic literature from across Africa suggests bee products, honey and larvae, had considerable importance both as a food source and in the making of honey-based drinks. Here, to investigate this, we carry out lipid residue analysis of 458 prehistoric pottery vessels from the Nok culture, Nigeria, West Africa, an area where early farmers and foragers co-existed. We report complex lipid distributions, comprising n-alkanes, n-alkanoic acids and fatty acyl wax esters, which provide direct chemical evidence of bee product exploitation and processing, likely including honey-collecting, in over one third of lipid-yielding Nok ceramic vessels. These findings highlight the probable importance of honey collecting in an early farming context, around 3500 years ago, in West Africa.


Asunto(s)
Miel/análisis , Miel/historia , África Occidental , Agricultura/historia , Animales , Arqueología , Abejas , Historia Antigua , Humanos , Lípidos/química , Nigeria
4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 965, 2021 02 16.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33594059

RESUMEN

The disappearance of many North American megafauna at the end of the Pleistocene is a contentious topic. While the proposed causes for megafaunal extinction are varied, most researchers fall into three broad camps emphasizing human overhunting, climate change, or some combination of the two. Understanding the cause of megafaunal extinctions requires the analysis of through-time relationships between climate change and megafauna and human population dynamics. To do so, many researchers have used summed probability density functions (SPDFs) as a proxy for through-time fluctuations in human and megafauna population sizes. SPDFs, however, conflate process variation with the chronological uncertainty inherent in radiocarbon dates. Recently, a new Bayesian regression technique was developed that overcomes this problem-Radiocarbon-dated Event-Count (REC) Modelling. Here we employ REC models to test whether declines in North American megafauna species could be best explained by climate changes, increases in human population densities, or both, using the largest available database of megafauna and human radiocarbon dates. Our results suggest that there is currently no evidence for a persistent through-time relationship between human and megafauna population levels in North America. There is, however, evidence that decreases in global temperature correlated with megafauna population declines.


Asunto(s)
Cambio Climático , Extinción Biológica , Crecimiento Demográfico , Animales , Arqueología , Geografía , Humanos , Mamuts/fisiología , Mastodontes/fisiología , Modelos Teóricos , América del Norte , Isótopos de Oxígeno , Análisis de Regresión , Factores de Tiempo
5.
Evol Anthropol ; 30(1): 8-16, 2021 Jan.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33529426

RESUMEN

Niche construction theory (NCT) has emerged as a promising theoretical tool for interpreting zooarchaeological material. However, its juxtaposition against more established frameworks like optimal foraging theory (OFT) has raised important criticism around the testability of NCT for interpreting hominin foraging behavior. Here, we present an optimization foraging model with NCT features designed to consider the destructive realities of the archaeological record after providing a brief review of OFT and NCT. Our model was designed to consider a foragers decision to exploit an environment given predation risk, mortality, and payoff ratios between different ecologies, like more-open or more-forested environments. We then discuss how the model can be used with zooarchaeological data for inferring environmental exploitation by a primitive hominin, Homo floresiensis, from the island of Flores in Southeast Asia. Our example demonstrates that NCT can be used in combination with OFT principles to generate testable foraging hypotheses suitable for zooarchaeological research.


Asunto(s)
Conducta Apetitiva/fisiología , Arqueología/métodos , Evolución Biológica , Animales , Fósiles , Hominidae , Indonesia
6.
Evol Anthropol ; 30(1): 71-83, 2021 Jan.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33555109

RESUMEN

We examine the relationship between niche construction theory (NCT) and human behavioral ecology (HBE), two branches of evolutionary science that are important sources of theory in archeology. We distinguish between formal models of niche construction as an evolutionary process, and uses of niche construction to refer to a kind of human behavior. Formal models from NCT examine how environmental modification can change the selection pressures that organisms face. In contrast, formal models from HBE predict behavior assuming people behave adaptively in their local setting, and can be used to predict when and why people engage in niche construction. We emphasize that HBE as a field is much broader than foraging theory and can incorporate social and cultural influences on decision-making. We demonstrate how these approaches can be formally incorporated in a multi-inheritance framework for evolutionary research, and argue that archeologists can best contribute to evolutionary theory by building and testing models that flexibly incorporate HBE and NCT elements.


Asunto(s)
Evolución Biológica , Ecosistema , Arqueología , Conducta , Evolución Cultural , Humanos
7.
Evol Anthropol ; 30(1): 50-62, 2021 Jan.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33604991

RESUMEN

Despite advances in our understanding of the geographic and temporal scope of the Paleolithic record, we know remarkably little about the evolutionary and ecological consequences of changes in human behavior. Recent inquiries suggest that human evolution reflects a long history of interconnections between the behavior of humans and their surrounding ecosystems (e.g., niche construction). Developing expectations to identify such phenomena is remarkably difficult because it requires understanding the multi-generational impacts of changes in behavior. These long-term dynamics require insights into the emergent phenomena that alter selective pressures over longer time periods which are not possible to observe, and are also not intuitive based on observations derived from ethnographic time scales. Generative models show promise for probing these potentially unexpected consequences of human-environment interaction. Changes in the uses of landscapes may have long term implications for the environments that hominins occupied. We explore other potential proxies of behavior and examine how modeling may provide expectations for a variety of phenomena.


Asunto(s)
Evolución Biológica , Ecosistema , Animales , Arqueología , Dieta , Hominidae/fisiología , Humanos , Sudáfrica
10.
Nat Hum Behav ; 5(3): 310-318, 2021 03.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33619375

RESUMEN

Naturalistic depictions of animals are a common subject for the world's oldest dated rock art, including wild bovids in Indonesia and lions in France's Chauvet Cave. The oldest known Australian Aboriginal figurative rock paintings also commonly depict naturalistic animals but, until now, quantitative dating was lacking. Here, we present 27 radiocarbon dates on mud wasp nests that constrain the ages of 16 motifs from this earliest known phase of rock painting in the Australian Kimberley region. These initial results suggest that paintings in this style proliferated between 17,000 and 13,000 years ago. Notably, one painting of a kangaroo is securely dated to between 17,500 and 17,100 years on the basis of the ages of three overlying and three underlying wasp nests. This is the oldest radiometrically dated in situ rock painting so far reported in Australia.


Asunto(s)
Arqueología , Pinturas/historia , Datación Radiométrica , Australia , Historia Antigua , Humanos
11.
Nat Hum Behav ; 5(3): 301-302, 2021 03.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33619374
12.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 632, 2021 01 27.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33504791

RESUMEN

Consuming the milk of other species is a unique adaptation of Homo sapiens, with implications for health, birth spacing and evolution. Key questions nonetheless remain regarding the origins of dairying and its relationship to the genetically-determined ability to drink milk into adulthood through lactase persistence (LP). As a major centre of LP diversity, Africa is of significant interest to the evolution of dairying. Here we report proteomic evidence for milk consumption in ancient Africa. Using liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) we identify dairy proteins in human dental calculus from northeastern Africa, directly demonstrating milk consumption at least six millennia ago. Our findings indicate that pastoralist groups were drinking milk as soon as herding spread into eastern Africa, at a time when the genetic adaptation for milk digestion was absent or rare. Our study links LP status in specific ancient individuals with direct evidence for their consumption of dairy products.


Asunto(s)
Industria Lechera , Conducta Alimentaria , Proteínas de la Leche/metabolismo , África Oriental , Secuencia de Aminoácidos , Animales , Arqueología , Huesos/metabolismo , Bovinos , Colágeno/metabolismo , Cálculos Dentales/metabolismo , Geografía , Humanos , Marcaje Isotópico , Lactasa/metabolismo , Lactoglobulinas/química , Proteínas de la Leche/química , Modelos Moleculares
13.
Evol Anthropol ; 30(1): 28-39, 2021 Jan.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33475216

RESUMEN

One of the greatest difficulties with evolutionary approaches in the study of stone tools (lithics) has been finding a mechanism for tying culture and biology in a way that preserves human agency and operates at scales that are visible in the archaeological record. The concept of niche construction, whereby organisms actively construct their environments and change the conditions for selection, could provide a solution to this problem. In this review, we evaluate the utility of niche construction theory (NCT) for stone tool archaeology. We apply NCT to lithics both as part of the "extended phenotype" and as residuals or precipitates of other niche-constructing activities, suggesting ways in which archaeologists can employ niche construction feedbacks to generate testable hypotheses about stone tool use. Finally, we conclude that, as far as its applicability to lithic archaeology, NCT compares favorably to other prominent evolutionary approaches, such as human behavioral ecology and dual-inheritance theory.


Asunto(s)
Evolución Biológica , Evolución Cultural , Ecosistema , Comportamiento del Uso de la Herramienta , Animales , Arqueología , Hominidae , Humanos , Tecnología
14.
PLoS One ; 16(1): e0244872, 2021.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33444387

RESUMEN

The Gjerrild burial provides the largest and best-preserved assemblage of human skeletal material presently known from the Single Grave Culture (SGC) in Denmark. For generations it has been debated among archaeologists if the appearance of this archaeological complex represents a continuation of the previous Neolithic communities, or was facilitated by incoming migrants. We sampled and analysed five skeletons from the Gjerrild cist, buried over a period of c. 300 years, 2600/2500-2200 cal BCE. Despite poor DNA preservation, we managed to sequence the genome (>1X) of one individual and the partial genomes (0.007X and 0.02X) of another two individuals. Our genetic data document a female (Gjerrild 1) and two males (Gjerrild 5 + 8), harbouring typical Neolithic K2a and HV0 mtDNA haplogroups, but also a rare basal variant of the R1b1 Y-chromosomal haplogroup. Genome-wide analyses demonstrate that these people had a significant Yamnaya-derived (i.e. steppe) ancestry component and a close genetic resemblance to the Corded Ware (and related) groups that were present in large parts of Northern and Central Europe at the time. Assuming that the Gjerrild skeletons are genetically representative of the population of the SGC in broader terms, the transition from the local Neolithic Funnel Beaker Culture (TRB) to SGC is not characterized by demographic continuity. Rather, the emergence of SGC in Denmark was part of the Late Neolithic and Early Bronze Age population expansion that swept across the European continent in the 3rd millennium BCE, resulting in various degrees of genetic replacement and admixture processes with previous Neolithic populations.


Asunto(s)
Arqueología , Genómica , Esqueleto/metabolismo , ADN Antiguo , Dinamarca , Femenino , Haplotipos , Historia Antigua , Migración Humana , Humanos , Masculino , Análisis para Determinación del Sexo
15.
Am J Phys Anthropol ; 174(4): 583-594, 2021 04.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33429458

RESUMEN

Intersectionality, the theory named by Kimberlé Crenshaw, outlines how multiple elements of an individual's social identity overlap to create and preserve societal inequalities and discrimination. Recently bioarchaeology's engagement with intersectionality has become increasingly explicit, as the field recognizes the lived experience of multiple axes of an individual's identity. Evidence of trauma can remain observable in an individual's skeleton for years, making it an ideal subject of study for intersectional analyses in bioarchaeology. Using contrasting case studies of two individuals who died in hospitals and were unclaimed after death, we explore the theoretical and methodological application of intersectionality to investigations of accidental and interpersonal trauma. Differences in identities and structural inequalities affect bone quality and health outcomes. As we demonstrate, a broken bone is the intersecting result of biological, histomorphological, sociocultural, and behavioral factors. This approach allows for a better acknowledgement of the inherent complexity of past lives, elevating and amplifying previously silenced voices. In this way, intersectionality in bioarchaeology demands social justice.


Asunto(s)
Pobreza/etnología , Identificación Social , Heridas y Traumatismos/etnología , Anciano , Alcoholismo , Arqueología , Grupo de Ascendencia Continental Europea , Femenino , Fracturas Óseas/etnología , Humanos , Londres , Masculino , Missouri , Discriminación Social , Heridas por Arma de Fuego
16.
Am J Phys Anthropol ; 174(4): 859-869, 2021 04.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33475153

RESUMEN

OBJECTIVES: This study tests, for the first time, the applicability of a new method of sex estimation utilizing enamel peptides on a sample of deciduous and permanent teeth at different stages of mineralization, from nonadults of unknown sex, including perinates. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A total of 43 teeth from 29 nonadult individuals aged from 40 gestational weeks to 19 years old were analyzed. The sample included pairs of fully mineralized and just developing teeth from the same individual. The individuals were from four archaeological sites in England: Piddington (1st-2nd centuries AD), Coach Lane, Victoria Gate, and Fewston (all 18th-19th centuries). A method that identifies sex chromosome-linked isoforms of the peptide amelogenin from human tooth enamel was applied. The method utilizes a minimally destructive acid etching procedure and subsequent nano liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry. RESULTS: It was possible to determine the sex of 28 of the nonadult individuals sampled (males = 20, females = 8, undetermined = 1). Only one sample failed (CL9), due to insufficient mineralization of the sampled tooth enamel. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD021683. DISCUSSION: Sufficient peptide material to determine sex can be recovered even from the crowns of developing perinatal teeth that are not fully mineralized. The minimally destructive and inexpensive (compared to ancient DNA) nature of this procedure has significant implications for bioarchaeological studies of infancy and childhood.


Asunto(s)
Amelogenina/análisis , Análisis para Determinación del Sexo/métodos , Diente/química , Diente/crecimiento & desarrollo , Adolescente , Adulto , Amelogenina/química , Arqueología , Entierro/historia , Niño , Preescolar , Esmalte Dental/química , Esmalte Dental/crecimiento & desarrollo , Inglaterra , Femenino , Historia del Siglo XVIII , Historia del Siglo XIX , Humanos , Lactante , Recién Nacido , Masculino , Espectrometría de Masas , Adulto Joven
17.
Nat Ecol Evol ; 5(3): 295-303, 2021 03.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33495592

RESUMEN

Little is known about the Pleistocene climatic context of northern Australia at the time of early human settlement. Here we generate a palaeoprecipitation proxy using stable carbon isotope analysis of modern and archaeological pandanus nutshell from Madjedbebe, Australia's oldest known archaeological site. We document fluctuations in precipitation over the last 65,000 years and identify periods of lower precipitation during the penultimate and last glacial stages, Marine Isotope Stages 4 and 2. However, the lowest effective annual precipitation is recorded at the present time. Periods of lower precipitation, including the earliest phase of occupation, correspond with peaks in exotic stone raw materials and artefact discard at the site. This pattern is interpreted as suggesting increased group mobility and intensified use of the region during drier periods.


Asunto(s)
Fósiles , Pandanaceae , Arqueología , Australia , Humanos , Ocupaciones
18.
PLoS One ; 16(1): e0240462, 2021.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33471789

RESUMEN

The origins of money and the formulation of coherent weight and measurement systems are amongst the most significant prehistoric developments of the human intellect. We present a method for detecting perceptible standardization of weights and apply this to 5028 Early Bronze Age rings, ribs, and axe blades from Central Europe. We calculate the degree of uniformity on the basis of psychophysics, and quantify this using similarity indexes. The analysis shows that 70.3% of all rings could not be perceptibly distinguished from a ring weighing 195.5 grams, indicating their suitability as commodity money. Perceptive weight equivalence is demonstrated between rings, and a selection of ribs and axe blades. Co-occurrence of these objects evidences their interchangeability. We further suggest that producing copies of rings led to recognition of weight similarities and the independent emergence of a system of weighing in Central Europe at the end of the Early Bronze Age.


Asunto(s)
Arqueología/métodos , Comercio/historia , Pesos y Medidas/historia , Europa (Continente) , Historia Antigua , Humanos , Pesos y Medidas/normas
19.
Nat Plants ; 7(2): 152-158, 2021 02.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33495555

RESUMEN

The archaeological record shows that large pre-Inca agricultural systems supported settlements for centuries around the ravines and oases of northern Chile's hyperarid Atacama Desert. This raises questions about how such productivity was achieved and sustained, and its social implications. Using isotopic data of well-preserved ancient plant remains from Atacama sites, we show a dramatic increase in crop nitrogen isotope values (δ15N) from around AD 1000. Maize was most affected, with δ15N values as high as +30‰, and human bone collagen following a similar trend; moreover, their carbon isotope values (δ13C) indicate a considerable increase in the consumption of maize at the same time. We attribute the shift to extremely high δ15N values-the highest in the world for archaeological plants-to the use of seabird guano to fertilize crops. Guano-'white gold' as it came to be called-thus sustained agricultural intensification, supporting a substantial population in an otherwise extreme environment.


Asunto(s)
Agricultura/historia , Arqueología , Productos Agrícolas/crecimiento & desarrollo , Productos Agrícolas/historia , Chile , Productos Agrícolas/metabolismo , Clima Desértico , Historia del Siglo XV , Historia del Siglo XVI , Historia del Siglo XVII , Historia del Siglo XVIII , Historia del Siglo XIX , Historia Medieval
20.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(1)2021 01 05.
Artículo en Inglés | MEDLINE | ID: mdl-33443177

RESUMEN

Humans reached the Mariana Islands in the western Pacific by ∼3,500 y ago, contemporaneous with or even earlier than the initial peopling of Polynesia. They crossed more than 2,000 km of open ocean to get there, whereas voyages of similar length did not occur anywhere else until more than 2,000 y later. Yet, the settlement of Polynesia has received far more attention than the settlement of the Marianas. There is uncertainty over both the origin of the first colonizers of the Marianas (with different lines of evidence suggesting variously the Philippines, Indonesia, New Guinea, or the Bismarck Archipelago) as well as what, if any, relationship they might have had with the first colonizers of Polynesia. To address these questions, we obtained ancient DNA data from two skeletons from the Ritidian Beach Cave Site in northern Guam, dating to ∼2,200 y ago. Analyses of complete mitochondrial DNA genome sequences and genome-wide SNP data strongly support ancestry from the Philippines, in agreement with some interpretations of the linguistic and archaeological evidence, but in contradiction to results based on computer simulations of sea voyaging. We also find a close link between the ancient Guam skeletons and early Lapita individuals from Vanuatu and Tonga, suggesting that the Marianas and Polynesia were colonized from the same source population, and raising the possibility that the Marianas played a role in the eventual settlement of Polynesia.


Asunto(s)
Cromosomas Humanos Y/genética , ADN Antiguo/análisis , ADN Mitocondrial/genética , Migración Humana/historia , Grupo de Ascendencia Oceánica/genética , Arqueología , Simulación por Computador , Genoma , Guam , Haplotipos , Historia Antigua , Humanos , Indonesia , Micronesia , Nueva Guinea , Filipinas , Filogenia , Polimorfismo de Nucleótido Simple , Polinesia , Vanuatu
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