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Nonmarine Mollusks from Archaeological Sites on Tikopia, Southeastern Solomon Islands

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Title:Nonmarine Mollusks from Archaeological Sites on Tikopia, Southeastern Solomon Islands
Authors:Christensen, Carl C.
Kirch, Patrick V.
Date Issued:Jan 1981
Publisher:University of Hawai'i Press
Citation:Christensen CC, Kirch PV. 1981. Nonmarine mollusks from archaeological sites on Tikopia, southeastern Solomon Islands. Pac Sci 35(1): 75-88.
Abstract:Eighteen species of nonmarine mollusks are recorded from the
island of Tikopia, southeastern Solomon Islands. Material studied was obtained
from eight archaeologica l sites; a small sample of live-collected specimens
was also examined. Fifteen species of terrestrial mollusks were pre sent in
this material: six are believed to be indigenous to the island (although none is
precinctive to it), eight were introduced by humans, and the status of one is
uncertain. Three additional species inhabiting estuarine, strandline, or aquatic
environments were found . The terrestrial mollusks of Tikopia are typically
New Hebridean, although prosobranchs and large pulmonates are poorly
represented in the fauna. Radiocarbon dates associated with several of the
archaeological samples demonstrate that most of the adventive species colonized
the island during the prehistoric period: Lamellidea pusilla, Gastrocopta
pediculus, and Lamellaxis gracilis were present on the island by ca. 900 B.C.,
and by ca. A.D. 1400 Liardetia samoensis, Wilhelminaia mathildae, and
Coneuplecta microconus had become established . Two exotic subulinids have
been introduced during the modern era. The numerical predominance in all
archaeological samples of individuals of adventive species indicates that the
Tikopian environment was significantly modified by humans during the
prehistoric period, probably as a result of agricultural practices.
Appears in Collections: Pacific Science Volume 35, Number 1, 1981

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