Research ArticleANTHROPOLOGY

Persistent Early to Middle Holocene tropical foraging in southwestern Amazonia

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Science Advances  24 Apr 2019:
Vol. 5, no. 4, eaav5449
DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav5449
  • Fig. 1 Location of the Llanos de Moxos and the excavated forest islands.

    (A) Location of known shell midden sites in relation to paleosol cores containing stratigraphic evidence of buried paleosols. Topographic maps showing the excavation units at (B) Isla del Tesoro (SM1), (C) La Charca (SM3), and (D) San Pablo (SM4). Photo credit: (A) Base image: World Imagery, Esri.

  • Fig. 2 Stratigraphic diagrams and calibrated radiocarbon dates in relation to weight frequencies of analyzed shell, bone, and burnt earth specimens from the study sites.

    Note the pattern of initial increase and subsequent decrease in the abundance of shell remains, while bones and burnt clay fluctuate over time.

  • Fig. 3 Stratigraphy of cores and excavations carried out at SM4.

    SM4 is placed above fluvial sands that overlay clay deposits (A). Both the sand and clay show high levels of hydromorphism: red and yellow staining due to the formation of iron oxides. These hydromorphic conditions are typical of tropical soils subjected to repeated cycles of humid and dry conditions, as it happens in regions with strong seasonality. However, currently, these sediments are found below a wetland (B), suggesting that these iron oxides are a relict feature of the past, when the average water table was meters below its current depth. A view from the north (C) shows how today the forest island is surrounded by tall marsh vegetation and connected to the mainland by a modern causeway. Photo credits: (B) Source image: DigitalGlobe, Google Earth, and (C) José M. Capriles, PSU.

  • Fig. 4 Burials documented at the Llanos de Moxos site SM3 forest island.

    (A and B) Burial 1 and (C and D) burial 2 during excavations and after cleaning bones encrusted with carbonates. Photo credit: José M. Capriles, PSU.

  • Fig. 5 Chronology of the Llanos de Moxos forest island occupations.

    Comparison of sum probability distribution of calibrated radiocarbon dates from the shell midden sites and regional paleosols (see table S2).

Supplementary Materials

  • Supplementary material for this article is available at http://advances.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/5/4/eaav5449/DC1

    Section S1. The Llanos de Moxos

    Section S2. Early human adaptations to wetland environments

    Section S3. Bioarchaeological description of the human burials

    Fig. S1. Selected faunal specimens from the shell midden excavations.

    Fig. S2. Selected well-preserved apple snail Pomacea shells.

    Table S1. Faunal remains’ NISP from each of the studied sites including their common names in parentheses.

    Table S2. Radiocarbon dates from the studied sites calibrated using SHCAL13 (49) using Oxcal 4.3 (50).

    References (52116)

  • Supplementary Materials

    The PDF file includes:

    • Section S1. The Llanos de Moxos
    • Section S2. Early human adaptations to wetland environments
    • Section S3. Bioarchaeological description of the human burials
    • Fig. S1. Selected faunal specimens from the shell midden excavations.
    • Fig. S2. Selected well-preserved apple snail Pomacea shells.
    • Table S1. Faunal remains’ NISP from each of the studied sites including their common names in parentheses.
    • Legend for table S2
    • References (52116)

    Download PDF

    Other Supplementary Material for this manuscript includes the following:

    • Table S2 (Microsoft Excel format). Radiocarbon dates from the studied sites calibrated using SHCAL13 (49) using Oxcal 4.3 (50).

    Files in this Data Supplement:

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