Wild boar - age at death estimates : the relevance of new modern data for archaeological skeletal material. 2. shaft growth in length and breadth. Archeological application

Jean-Denis VIGNE, Anne BRIDAULT & Marie-Pierre HORARD-HERBIN

en Anthropozoologica 31 - Pages 19-28

Published on 01 December 2000

This article is a part of the thematic issue Animal management and demography through the ages

The present day reference collection presented in Bridault et al. (this volume) is now investigated to test the possibilities of using growth of shaft lengths and breadths for determining the skeletal age of the wild boar. Until about 10 months, correlation are good with age for the 18 tested bone measurements. Only four of them (GL d radius and femur, SLC scapula and SD humerus) could be used for older ages, till 2 years. It has not been possible to model growth of every measurement because the collection still lacks animals younger than 6 months. Though preliminary, these results are then tested on the Mesolithic wild boar assemblage of Noyen-sur-Seine (Northern France), which does not include any tooth. Precise determination of age structure suggests very short boar hunting session(s) and collective hunting techniques targeting groups of young and females. This archaeological application confirms that using bone measurements is only possible for boar younger than 10-12 months, but also shows that this method produces much more precise and powerful results than epiphyseal fusion.
Keywords :
Wild boar (Sus scrofa), Ageing, Skeletal growth, Osteometry, Mesolithic.
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