SHRUB, SCRUB, AND GRASS: THE IMPORTANCE OF SHRUBLAND AND GRASSLAND PLANT COMMUNITIES TO THE DIET OF THE LATE PREHISTORIC (A.D. 900-1535) HUNTER-GATHERERS OF THE EASTERN TRANS-PECOS REGION OF TEXAS

Volume 1 (2014) – Article 1

SHRUB, SCRUB, AND GRASS: THE IMPORTANCE OF SHRUBLAND AND GRASSLAND PLANT COMMUNITIES TO THE DIET OF THE LATE PREHISTORIC (A.D. 900-1535) HUNTER-GATHERERS OF THE EASTERN TRANS-PECOS REGION OF TEXAS

By: Casey W. Riggs

ABSTRACT
The Eastern Trans-Pecos archeological region of Texas is an area rich in botanical diversity, a resource heavily utilized by both prehistoric and historic hunter-gatherers. A comparison of four paleoethnobotanical investigations of archeological sites dating to the Late Prehistoric Era (A.D. 900-1535) with ethnobotanical information of the Mescalero Apache reveal that the botanical component of prehistoric and historic diets have been similar for the past 1,000 years. Differences in the degree of similarity can be attributed to differential preservation and analytical techniques. Further, ecological sites from the Ecological Site Information System are demonstrated as a novel and useful tool for landscape-scale archeological analysis.

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