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Modeling Foraging Ranges and Spatial Organization of Late Pleistocene Hunter gatherers in the Southern Levant - A Least-Cost GIS Approach

Byrd, BF; Garrard, AN; Brandy, P; (2016) Modeling Foraging Ranges and Spatial Organization of Late Pleistocene Hunter gatherers in the Southern Levant - A Least-Cost GIS Approach. Quaternary International , 396 pp. 62-78. 10.1016/j.quaint.2015.07.048. Green open access

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Abstract

This study takes a regional approach to understanding the nature of Near Eastern huntergatherer spatial organization near the height of the Last Glacial Maximum, circa 21,000 calibrated years ago. To do so, we reconstructed the paleogeography and paleovegetation and then employed least-cost GIS analysis to model foraging ranges and potential annual territorial extent associated with a selection of excavated and dated sites throughout the Southern Levant. Settlement trends in the region as a whole are explored first, followed by a case study of annual settlement scenarios in the arid Azraq Basin on the eastern edge of the Levant, focusing on its distinctive large aggregation sites. The results of the study reveal that potential maximum daily foraging ranges as well as habitats and habitat zone heterogeneity within these foraging ranges differed greatly across the region. Due to variance in potential plant and animal productivity, settlement patterns undoubtedly differed significantly across the southern Levant particularly with respect to the number of moves per year, the importance of fusion-fission strategies, the seasonality of relocation tactics, and the importance of group territoriality. These variances in annual settlement options and emerging patterns within the southern Levant at the height of the Last Glacial Maximum provide baseline conditions for understanding divergences in adaptive trajectories within the wider region.

Type: Article
Title: Modeling Foraging Ranges and Spatial Organization of Late Pleistocene Hunter gatherers in the Southern Levant - A Least-Cost GIS Approach
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2015.07.048
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2015.07.048
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA. All rights reserved. This manuscript version is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-commercial Non-derivative 4.0 International license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0). This license allows you to share, copy, distribute and transmit the work for personal and non-commercial use providing author and publisher attribution is clearly stated. Further details about CC BY licenses are available at http://creativecommons.org/ licenses/by/4.0. Access may be initially restricted by the publisher.
Keywords: Least-cost GIS; Paleolandscape reconstruction; Foraging range modeling; Southern Levant; Epipaleolithic
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of SandHS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1470290
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