Emu butchery and economic utility: implications for understanding Australian zooarchaeology and megafaunal extinctions

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  • Emu butchery and economic utility: implications for understanding Australian zooarchaeology and megafaunal extinctions

Dublin Core

Title

Emu butchery and economic utility: implications for understanding Australian zooarchaeology and megafaunal extinctions

Subject

S5-2, S6-3, General session, poster

Description

Abstract:

Debate continues over the possible role of humans in the Late Pleistocene faunal extinctions and the nature of possible interactions between humans and megafauna. If megafauna were indeed human prey then it is important to try and understand the economic utility of relevant target prey, and where and how they were taken. While two Australian studies have attempted to evaluate the economic utility of select macropod species (kangaroo and wallaby), the data for another important target prey – the Australian Emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae) – has yet to be compiled. Understanding modern prey selection, butchery patterns and food sharing in modern contexts may provide important interpretive frameworks for the zooarchaeological record. This poster presents the results of a butchery and economic utility study of the emu in the semi-arid zone of southeastern Australia. The results are discussed in consideration of the suggestion that open locations such as ephemeral waterholes may have been important prey acquisition foci in semi-arid and arid contexts; and with reference to evidence from Cuddie Springs, central northern NSW, where the bones of the extinct giant flightless bird Genyornis newtoni are found co-occurring with flaked stone artefacts between c. 30,000 to c. 36,000 years ago. These results also have important implications for understanding and interpreting Australia’s unique suite of endemic fauna in general, and its zooarchaeological record.

Authors:

GARVEY Jillian1,2, FIELD Judith2,3, COCHRANE Brett4 and BONEY Chris4

Affiliations

1 Archaeology Program, La Trobe University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 3086, j.garvey@latrobe.edu.au.
2 Australian Key Centre for Microscopy and Microanalysis, The University of Sydney, 2006, N.S.W. j.field@usyd.edu.au
3 School of Philosophical and Historical Inquiry, The University of Sydney, 2006, N.S.W.
4 rewarrina Local Aboriginal Land Council, Brewarrina 2839 N.S.W.

Creator

Garvey, Jillian
Field, Judith
Cochrane, Brett
Boney, Chris

Date

August 2010

Contribution Form

Online Submission

No

Document Item Type Metadata

Citation

Garvey, Jillian, Field, Judith, Cochrane, Brett and Boney, Chris. "Emu butchery and economic utility: implications for understanding Australian zooarchaeology and megafaunal extinctions ," in BoneCommons, Item #1157, http://alexandriaarchive.org/bonecommons/items/show/1157 (accessed August 7, 2020).

License

Creative Commons License

File: Garvey et al. Poster_ICAZ 2010.pdf

File: Garvey Emu Poster PowerPoint.ppt

File: Garvey Emu Poster Text.pdf