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Surprise Valley Settlement and Subsistence: A Critical Review of the Faunal Evidence


Prehistoric settlement-subsistence patterns within the Great Basin have been characterized as dispersed and restricted patterns (Elston 1982: 189). The dispersed pattern is best represented by Shoshonean groups in the central Great Basin who established several base camps in the course of their seasonal round and might not return to the same winter camp each year because of unpredictable food resources, particularly pinyon nuts. This pattern has been commonly termed the Desert Culture, Desert Archaic, or Shoshonean pattern (Aikens 1970: 200-202; Bettinger 1978a; Jennings 1957, 1964: Jennings and Norbeck 1955; Steward 1938, 1955; Thomas 1971a, 1972, 1983).

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