Paleozoology and Paleoenvironments outlines the reconstruction of ancient climates, floras, and habitats on the basis of animal fossil remains recovered from archaeological and palaeontological sites. In addition to outlining the ecological fundamentals and analytical assumptions attending such analyses, Tyler Faith and Lee Lyman describe and critically evaluate many of the varied analytical techniques that have been applied to palaeozoological remains for the purpose of palaeoenvironmental reconstruction. These techniques range from analyses based on the presence or abundance of species in a fossil assemblage to those based on taxon-free ecological characterizations. All techniques are illustrated using faunal data from archaeological or palaeontological contexts. Aimed at students and professionals, Paleozoology and Paleoenvironments will serve as fundamental resource for courses in zooarchaeology, palaeontology, and palaeoecology.
1. Why a book on palaeoenvironmental reconstruction from faunal remains?
2. Fundamentals of ecology and biogeography
3. Analytical assumptions
4. Background of select palaeozoological samples
5. Environmental reconstructions based on the presence/absence of taxa
6. Environmental reconstruction based on taxonomic abundances
7. Taxon-free techniques
8. Environmental inferences based on taxonomic diversity
9. Transfer functions and quantitative palaeoenvironmental reconstruction
10. Size clines as palaeoenvironmental indicators
11. Some final thoughts
J. Tyler Faith is curator of archaeology at the Natural History Museum of Utah and assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Utah. His research emphasizes the relationships between Quaternary mammal communities, environmental change, and human-environment interactions, with an emphasis on eastern and southern Africa. This is his first book.
R. Lee Lyman is emeritus professor of anthropology at the University of Missouri-Columbia. A scholar of late Quaternary paleozoology and human prehistory of the Pacific Northwest United States, he is author of Vertebrate Taphonomy, Quantitative Paleozoology, and Theodore E. White and the Development of Zooarchaeology in North America.