Implications of age structures for Epipaleolithic hunting strategies in the western Taurus Mountains, Southwest Turkey

Levent ATICI

en Anthropozoologica 44 (1) - Pages 13-39

Published on 06 July 2009

This article is a part of the thematic issue Zooarchaeology and the reconstruction of cultural systems: Case studies from the Old World

This paper investigates hunter-gatherer behavioral strategies during the Epipaleolithic period in the western Taurus Mountains of Mediterranean Turkey. Seven archaeofaunal assemblages excavated from Karain B and Öküzini caves were analyzed and interpreted with a special emphasis on age structures and their implications for general hunting strategies, site function and use, and seasonality. A detailed analysis of age structures based on dental wear and epiphyseal fusion data combined with other zooarchaeological evidence has revealed that hunter-gatherers in the Western Taurus Mountains intensively hunted wild sheep and goat, mostly targeted prime-age animals, shifted from seasonally restricted site use and hunting to unrestricted multiseasonal site use and hunting pattern, and progressively hunted larger number of juvenile caprines throughout the Epipaleolithic.


Karain, Öküzini, Turkey, Epipaleolithic, Seasonality, Mortality Profiles, Discrete Age Cohorts, Synchronized Killing.

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