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Title: Striped hyenas as bone modifiers in dual human-to-carnivore experimental models
Authors: Arriaza, María del Carmen
Organista, Elia
Yravedra Saínz de los Terreros, José
Santonja, Manuel
Baquedano, Enrique
Domínguez-Rodrigo, Manuel
Keywords: Striped hyena;Post-ravaging;Orientation;Olduvai Bed I
Issue Date: Jul-2019
Publisher: Springer
Citation: Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 2019, 11 (7), 3187-3199
Abstract: Taphonomic studies, along with modern analogs arisen from experimentation, have been developed to discern the agents responsible for bone accumulations. A special focus has been given to carnivores, which may produce bone accumulations or interact with hominins by ravaging bones from archaeological sites. Although a great effort has been made to study several carnivore species (namely, felids, hyenids and canids), a limited knowledge concerning some scavenging species such as the striped hyena (Hyaena hyaena) remains. The present study shows the results of an experiment carried out at Olduvai Gorge (Ngorongoro Conservation Area, Tanzania) which aimed at assessing the impact of striped hyenas on a goat carcass. After human butchering, the goat carcass was deposited in an area near the FLK North site, where nocturnal carnivores are very active. The orientation and arrangement of the bone assemblage were documented daily and recorded with the aid of photogrammetric techniques. The behaviour of the carnivores acting on the carcasses was recorded by a motion camera picture. The only carnivore involved in the modification of the bone assemblage was the striped hyena. The results show that the post-ravaging behaviour of this species is similar to that previously documented for the spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta). Oddly, after one night of carnivore ravaging, the experimental sample showed anisotropy. The carnivore ravaging carried out by the striped hyena modified the orientation pattern of the simulated archaeological site. Thus, carnivore ravaging may also impact the spatial orientation pattern of archaeological sites.
ISSN: 1866-9557
DOI: 10.1007/s12520-018-0747-y
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Type: Article
Appears in Collections:Arqueología

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