Paleoentomology: Insects and other Arthropods in Environmental Archaeology
2014 (English)In: The Encyclopedia of Global Archaeology / [ed] Claire Smith, Springer Science+Business Media B.V., 2014, 5740-5755 p.Chapter in book (Refereed)
Insects are the most diverse group of animals on the planet, and as suchare present in a wider variety of habitats than most other organism groups.This diversity, in addition to a long evolutionary history (Grimaldi &Engel 2005), and together with a propensity to be preserved in both desiccatingand anaerobic environments, has provided an excellent tool for thereconstruction of both Quaternary and more immediate archaeologicalenvironments. Insect remains often provide proxy environmental information onthe immediate context from which the fossils are derived, and as such may beeither complementary to the more regional picture provided by palynology orindicate site conditions, such as levels of hygiene and evidence of tradingconnections, which are rarely available from any other palaeoecological source.They therefore provide information on a broad range of habitats and conditions,on- and off-site, and in addition, in appropriate contexts, also climate.Processing of samples is essentially simple, requiring readily availablematerials, yet is time consuming, and identification of the usuallydisarticulated fragments (sclerites) requires diligence and patience and accessto well curated reference collections. Fortunately, abundant literature,computer software and database tools now exist to aid in their interpretation.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer Science+Business Media B.V., 2014. 5740-5755 p.
Antiquities, Bioarchaeology, Classical Studies, Conservation, Paleoanthropology, insects, entomology, palaeo
Archaeology Ecology Climate Research Ecology
Research subject Entomology; Archaeology; Quarternary Geology; environmental archaeology; Historical Geology and Paleontology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-81681DOI: 10.1007/978-1-4419-0465-2_2333ISBN: 978-1-4419-0426-3ISBN: 978-1-4419-0465-2OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-81681DiVA: diva2:657541