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«Item type text; Dissertation-Reproduction (electronic) Authors Munro, Natalie Dawn Publisher The University of Arizona. Rights Copyright © is held ...»

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If more than one landmark or portion is present on a large specimen, each landmark was counted once. Age, side, sex, and body size were not taken into consideration when estimating MNEs. MNEs are used to compare the representation of body parts in the Natufian assemblages and to identify which parts may be missing due to attritional processes.

MAU (or standardized MNE following Stiner 1994) refers to the minimum number of animal units represented by a particular taxon (Binford 1978, 1981). MAU is a standardized measure that allows comparison of the abundance of bone portions or elements to a complete skeleton model. It is calculated by dividing the observed MNE by the number of times that element or portion is represented in the skeleton (expected MNE). MAUs derived from cranial bones and teeth are compared in this chapter, and a more detailed discussion on the derivation of MAU for the complete skeleton follows in

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Finally, MNI is the minimum number of individual animals required to account for all specimens of a given taxon in a faunal assemblage. The MNI is derived from the best represented skeletal portion or element for each taxon following standardization (i.e., the highest MAU). MNI estimates can vary considerably for an assemblage, depending on how they are calculated, and on how a faunal collection is divided. In this study, MNIs are derived without considering the side, sex, age, or size of each specimen in an effort to avoid compounding the effects of aggregation error.

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As consumers of animal prey, the niches of many predators overlap with that of humans, and many prefer the same prey species. Humans and other predators kill, consume, and transport prey and sometimes even feed on the same animal carcass. Nonhuman predators also frequently prefer the same types of shelters as humans (e.g., dry caves and rock shelters with favorable exposure), and many species transport and leave bones in their dens or roosts. Because of the high potential for overlap in prey choice and feeding behavior, it is possible that bones collected by humans, particularly those recovered from caves or rock shelters, will become mixed with bones collected by other predator species. It thus can not be assumed that all bones recovered in association with lithics or other artifactual material are a product of human behavior by virtue of spatial association alone (Andrews 1990; Andrews and Nesbit-Evans 1983; Brain 1981; Dodson and Wexlar 1979; Hoffman 1988; Isaac 1983; Mondini 1995; Savage and Cooper 1982;

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collectors, it is necessary first to establish whether or not other predators were contributing agents.

Three major groups of bone-collecting predators must be considered in this study:

humans, mammals from the Order Camivora, and diurnal raptors (Falconiformes) and nocturnal owls (Strigiformes). Each of these groups inhabited the Levant during the Natufian period, and each could have contributed to the Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit archaeofaunas. The most reliable method for distinguishing the effects of different bone collectors is to examine patterns of macroscopic damage on the bones. A wealth of research has been devoted to distinguishing the signatures of predators on bone assemblages. I will focus on broad types of damage that separate humans from mammalian and avian predators in general. If non-human predators are shown to have played a formative role in creating the Natufian assemblages, it will then be necessary to take a closer look for damage types that implicate specific predator species (i.e., species specific tooth marks on bones or prey body part representation). Though there is potential for overlap in the behavior and resulting bone damage caused by different predators, a combination of indicators have proven effective for separating the impact of humans from other bone collectors (Brain 1980; Cruz-Uribe 1991; Haynes 1983; NoeNygaard 1989; Stiner 1994). Human signatures such as cut marks, percussion marks, and burning, typical carnivore damage such as punctures, scoring, and cone fractures, as well as body part representation all help in distinguishing bones collected by humans from

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Collectors of Large Game Only two groups of collectors, humans and large carnivores, could have contributed to the ungulate assemblages from Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit.

Raptors of the Levant rarely capture ungulates because the prey are too large (Paz 1987).

In the southern Levant, a narrow group of bone-collectors potentially contributed to the ungulate remains. Some of these species, including panthers {Panthems pardus), ']Z'ck.dXs {Canis aureus), wolves {Canis lupus), and hyenas {Hyaena striata and Crocuta crocuta ), inhabited the Levant during the Natufian period, but their bones are extremely rare or nonexistent at the sites studied here. Remains of small cats {Felis cf chaus), foxes (Vulpes vulpes) and badgers {Meles metes) are much better represented at Natufian sites.

Though wild cats regularly hunt gazelles and other ungulate species, foxes and badgers consume them only opportunistically, usually via scavenging. Despite variation in the behavior of these collectors, the assemblages they create share many characteristics in common, and they differ in similar ways from assemblages accumulated by humans.

Diagnostic damage types left by carnivores on ungulate bones are described below.

Damage on Large Mammal Skeletons Three categories of damage provide evidence for human activity, while others inform us about the activities of carnivores.

Cut marks are left on bone surfaces following contact with the sharp cutting edge of human tools. Though cut marks may be created by a variety of activities, including dismemberment, butchering, and filleting, most processing activities do not leave any

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Actualistic studies reporting the frequencies of cut marks on butchered bone are few (but see Binford 1978; 1981; Bartram et al. 1991; Gifford-Gonzales 1989; Lupo 1994, O'Connell et al. 1988; Shipman and Rose 1983; Yellen 1991a), but it can be assumed that bones bearing cut marks represent only a subset of the greater assemblage that was actually butchered by humans. This should surprise no one, since cut marks are undesirable byproducts of butchering activities and contact with bone generally dulls the edges of tools. In this study, the number, orientation (transverse, vertical and diagonal), average length, and the location of cut marks were recorded.

Percussion marks or cone fractures are created when bone is impacted by a highly concentrated force, in much the same way that flakes are produced during stone tool manufacture (e.g., Blumenschine and Selvaggio 1988). The force of impact dislodges a cone-shaped bone fragment (usually halved), which flares outward from its apex (the striking point) on the exterior surface of the bone (Figure 4.1).

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Humans create percussion marks on bones when a hammerstone is used to open large bone cavities for marrow. Cone fractures occur most often on long bones with large medullary cavities. The thick cortical bone of long bone shafts is most likely to fracture in this way due to its relatively dense, uniform structure. Carnivores may also create cone fractures resembling percussion marks by compressing bones between their jaws, though they are rare in comparison to human-modified faunas and most commonly form in opposing pairs due to the action of both the upper and lower teeth (Stiner 1994: 106).

Burning is not an infallible indicator of deliberate human activity, despite the fact that humans are the only species that make fire and cook food. Bones may be burned at a number of stages in their depositional history, either as a byproduct of cooking, by disposal in active hearths, or by secondary burning from the heat of hearths build atop older debris. Buried bones with no direct contact with fire may be carbonized if they are buried within roughly 6 cm of an active hearth (Stiner et al. 1995). The shades of discoloration caused by burning on bone directly reflect the intensity of heat to which the bone was exposed (from gray to black to white; Shipman et al. 1984; Figure 4.3). Stiner et al. (1995) show that bones do not become calcined unless they come in direct contact with red heat. If shallowly buried beneath a hearth they will at most turn black.

Despite the difficulties of distinguishing bones burned as a direct result of human activity from those burned accidentally, the presence of burning provides at minimum, general evidence for human activity in the area where the bones are found. Establishing which part of the assemblage humans were responsible for collecting is more

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burning on specific portions, elements, and taxa. The repeated use of a cooking technique may result in higher frequencies of burning on some elements or bone portions than others. Localized patches of burning on long bone ends may also provide evidence for activities such as roasting, since articular ends are less likely to be protected from the heat source by flesh, if disarticulation of the animal occurs at the joints. Higher frequencies of burning on some taxa may indicate hearth-centered consumption.

Figure 4.2: Variation in burning intensity on Lepus elements from Hayonim Cave.

The selection includes several completely calcined bones (white), as well as those depicting varying intensities of burning on a single fragment.

In this study, buming was recorded conservatively, primarily because manganese staining is common in the assemblages from Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit, and its black color is often difficult to distinguish from buming. Buming therefore was noted

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rather than burned. Burning was recorded using codes ranging on a scale from 1 to 6, with one representing the least intensive burning (i.e., less than half of bone carbonized) and 6 indicating the most intensive burning (i.e., bone completely calcined), using temperature associated criteria established by Stiner et al. (1995). The position of localized burning was noted when present.

Carnivore Ravaging occurs during feeding, when carnivores imprint bones with tooth marks, including punctures, scoring, and crenelation. Carnivores that consume meat, but avoid skeletal tissues sometimes mark bones with their teeth when gripping or tearing flesh from the bone. Those that often consume bone leave more obvious signatures, such as distinctly ragged edges, pitting, and scoring (Binford 1981; Haynes 1980; Haynes 1983; Maguire et al. 1980; Shipman 1981; Stiner 1994). Those bones that have been breached may display opposing cone fractures created by the joint action of a carnivore's upper and lower teeth (Lyman 1994; Stiner 1994). Finally, some bones are passed through the animal's digestive system, where they are bombarded by gastric acids that corrode, pit, polish, or thin skeletal tissue (Andrews 1990; Brain 1981; Horwitz 1990).

Results of Damage on Large Game Skeletons Table 4.1 shows the frequencies of bone damage on ungulate remains from Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit. Despite the potential suitability of the two sites for carnivore dens, evidence for carnivore activity on ungulate and carnivore bones is virtually nonexistent. Only 8 ungulate and 3 carnivore bones from Hayonim Cave, and

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punctures were suspected, but questionable, and the source of the mark unclear. In the remaining cases gnawing damage was restricted to a single puncture or score mark. A few bones from Hayonim Cave may provide evidence for digestion, but all are questionable: two have small patches of polish; two bear an eroded appearance that resembles corrosion from digestive acids; and two show high polish and pitting. Even if all six of these bones were digested by non-human predators, their frequency in the assemblage is exceedingly low and of little consequence considering the immense size of the assemblage.

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Table 4.1: Frequency of bone damage caused by humans and carnivores on ungulate and camivore remains from the Natufian layers of Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit.

*The percent of bones damaged by cone fractures is calculated only out bones that have the potential to preserve cone fractures (i.e., ungulate long bone fragments).

Damage inflicted by humans is prevalent on ungulate and camivore remains from both assemblages. Cut marks were identified on 1.5% of ungulate bones and 0.8% of

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for ungulates and 1.1% for carnivores). Abundant cone fractures (10.4% of ungulate long bones from Hayonim Cave) indicate that much of the assemblage was broken by humans while fresh. Overall, the damage to bones by tool-bearing humans is more than 100 times more common than the damage left by other carnivore species. Burning, much of it heavy (40.1% of burned bone is at least partially calcined), is present on 15.6% of the Hayonim Cave ungulate remains, indicating that bone was deposited in or around hearths.

It is impossible to reconstruct the history of every bone in an assemblage, but the evidence from bone damage unequivocally points to humans as the dominant bone collectors of both the Hayonim Cave and Hilazon large game faunas. Frequencies of several categories of bone damage provide a strong argument for human activity, and suggest that carnivores contributed little to assemblage formation. This is rather interesting in light of the inferred presence of domestic dogs in Natufian sites. Although burning may only indicate secondary human activity at a site, high proportions of calcination, the greatest extreme of burning, the presence of cut marks and cone fractures, and the rarity of carnivore damage unequivocally demonstrate that humans were the primary collectors and users of the ungulates and carnivores whose remains were recovered from the Natufian deposits at Hayonim Cave and Hilazon Tachtit.

Collectors of Small Game Determining the origin of small game is more challenging than establishing the collectors of ungulates and carnivores in the Natufian assemblages. The small game

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