Stratigraphy, Chronology, and Cultural Context of an Early Faunal Assemblage from Easter Island

dc.contributor.author Steadman, David W. en_US
dc.contributor.author Casanova, Patricia Vargas en_US
dc.contributor.author Ferrando, Claudio Cristino en_US
dc.date.accessioned 2010-08-04T19:43:57Z
dc.date.available 2010-08-04T19:43:57Z
dc.date.issued 1994 en_US
dc.description.abstract We report on the text excavation of a small trench at the coastal site of Ahu Anakena, Easter Island (Rapanui), Chile. The cultural deposits are a basal clay overlain by up to 1.3 m of calcareous sand. Conventional 14C dates on wood charcoal range from 660 ± 80 B.P. to 900 ± 80 B.P. Most lithic artifacts are obsidian, with the remainder of basalt or red scoria. The nonlithic artifacts include two bird-bone needles and a dolpin-bone tab. The vertebrate fauna differs later prehistoric Easter Island assemblages in that bones of marine mammals, and native landbirds are much more common, and bones of fish, humans, and chickens are rarer. The fauna is dominated by the Common Dolphin, Pacific Rat, and fish. Bones of fish are much rarer, and those of dolphins much more common, than in prehistoric midden assemblages from more tropical parts of Polynesia. The abundance of dolphin bones suggests that the prehistoric Rapanui had sailing canoes for hunting dolphins offshore until c. A.D. 1300-1400, which deforestation eliminated the raw material (trees) needed to make the canoes. Bones of extinct and extirpated native seabirds and landbirds occur throughout deposit. KEYWORDS: Polynesia, Easter Island, prehistoric extinctions, fauna. en_US
dc.identifier.citation Steadman, D. W., P. V. Casanova, C. C. Ferrando. 1994. Stratigraphy, Chronology, and Cultural Context of an Early Faunal Assemblage from Easter Island. Asian Perspectives 33 (1): 79-96. en_US
dc.identifier.issn 1535-8283 (E-ISSN) en_US
dc.identifier.issn 0066-8435 (Print) en_US
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10125/17040
dc.publisher University of Hawai'i Press (Honolulu) en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Volume 33 en_US
dc.relation.ispartofseries Number 1 en_US
dc.subject Polynesia en_US
dc.subject Easter Island en_US
dc.subject prehistoric extinctions en_US
dc.subject fauna en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Prehistoric peoples--Asia--Periodicals. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Prehistoric peoples--Oceania--Periodicals. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Asia--Antiquities--Periodicals. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh Oceania--Antiquities--Periodicals. en_US
dc.subject.lcsh East Asia--Antiquities--Periodicals. en_US
dc.title Stratigraphy, Chronology, and Cultural Context of an Early Faunal Assemblage from Easter Island en_US
dc.type Article en_US
dc.type.dcmi Text en_US
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