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A Spatial Distribution Study of Faunal Remains from Two Lower Magdalenian Occupation Levels in El Mirón Cave, Cantabria, Spain

Abstract: Abstract: Human behaviour can be reconstructed by analysing specific activities and campsite organization using spatial analysis. The dense occupation layers of the Lower Cantabrian Magdalenian in the Northern Spain reveal varied aspects of Upper Palaeolithic lifeways, including evidence of specific localized activities. The outer vestibule of El Mirón cave has a particularly rich and intact Lower Magdalenian occupation horizon, Levels 15–17. The excavations in the outer vestibule “Cabin” area of the site revealed excellent bone preservation. Artefacts and faunal remains were individually recorded and sediments water-screened to yield a large sample of archaeological finds and spatial data. Zooarchaeological analysis provided the taxonomic, anatomic and taphonomic determination of the faunal individual finds. Smaller animal remains were categorized and counted; special attention was given to the identification of anthropogenic modifications such as burnt bones or bone flakes. These small refuse items are considered to be useful, in situ indicators of localized activities. The spatial distribution analysis of this dense and complex palimpsest of El Mirón Lower Cantabrian Magdalenian layers required GIS based methods including density analysis, heatmaps and cluster analysis. Based on the spatial distribution of Level 15 and 16 faunal remains, different activity areas were identified comprising hearth, working and dropping zones. These results imply the deliberately segregated use of space within the Lower Cantabrian Magdalenian site area, in which bone-processing activities played a central role

Otras publicaciones de la misma revista o congreso con autores/as de la Universidad de Cantabria

 Fuente: Papers from the Institute of Archaeology, 26(1): Art. 4, pp. 1–16

Editorial: Institute of Archaeology, Univerty College of London

 Año de publicación: 2016

Nº de páginas: 16

Tipo de publicación: Artículo de Revista

 DOI: 10.5334/pia-477

ISSN: 0965-9315,2041-9015