Date of Award
Bachelor of Arts
Fish are not often considered as a possible dietary resource in human occupation sites which predate Anatomically Modern Humans (AMHs). Barriers (including preservation issues, researcher interpretations, and issues of the Neanderthal image as too cognitively challenged) have led to the underestimation of fish as a resource at Middle Paleolithic sites. Following the development of fishing within the record, but using the Neanderthal as a particular model, this thesis examines the analyses (and misconceptions) of the abilities required to take advantage of aquatic resources. Fanual evidence at Neanderthal sites, as well as nutritional ecological studies indicates that fish were consumed. This fits in with the opportunistic nature of our generally omnivorous ancestors. New methods for the detection of fish in the archaeological record are proposed through microscope residue analysis, in order to solidify the connection that humans are the predators and consumers of fish at sites.
Warren, Rebecca Mae, "The Potential Role of Fish in the Diet of Neanderthals: Ecology, Nutrition and Microscopic Residue Analysis" (2009). Honors Theses. 38.