Neanderthal diet in fluvial environments at the end of the Middle Pleistocene/early Late Pleistocene of PRERESA site in the Manzanares Valley (Madrid, Spain)

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Yravedra Sainz de los Terreros, José and Rubio-Jara, Susana and Panera, Joaquin and Van der Made, Jan and Pérez-González, Alfredo (2019) Neanderthal diet in fluvial environments at the end of the Middle Pleistocene/early Late Pleistocene of PRERESA site in the Manzanares Valley (Madrid, Spain). Quaternary International, 520 . pp. 72-83. ISSN 1040-6182

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2018.01.030



Abstract

Most Middle Palaeolithic sites with faunal remains processed by humans in the Iberian Peninsula are located in rock shelters or caves. PRERESA is one of the few open-air sites, dating to the end of the Middle or early Late Pleistocene, in which faunal remains associated with lithic industry has been recorded. At least one individual of Mammuthus/Elephas has been identified, as well as two individuals of Bos primigenius, a further two of Haploidoceros mediterraneus, and other mammals of different sizes. The simple is well preserved; carnivore activity is scant and the remains were buried shortly after death. The site is located in the floodplain of the Manzanares river, in an environment of forest and open areas, characterized by herbaceous plants and river woodlands which developed in a mild climate with some humidity.
One Haploidoceros and one auerochs were almost complete and semi anatomically connected. A proboscidean, one of the auerochs and an unidentified mammal show conspicuous evidence of having been exploited by human beings. Lithic knapping was aimed at flake production. All phases of the operational chain are represented, which suggests that the lithic assemblage was manufactured with the purpose of processing meat. The scantly elaborated technical schemes of the lithic industry, together with the limited evidence of human processing of faunal remains as well as the presence of animals deposited in a natural way could suggest that this site was used by Neanderthals only sporadically.
However, the presence of certain taxa such as proboscidea, auerochs and four other mammal species of different sizes, which were a anthropically processed, could indicate that the site was visited recurrently by human groups with the purpose of processing such mammals. The purpose of this paper is to analyse the taphonomic history of the site, as well as to add to the knowledge of the Neanderthal group behaviour patterns.


Item Type:Article
Subjects:Humanities > History > Prehistory
ID Code:70365
Deposited On:14 Feb 2022 09:37
Last Modified:18 Feb 2022 16:55

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