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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Seasonal Exploitation of Chione Clams on the Southern California Coast


The remains of shellfish of various species comprise a significant fraction of many coastal southern California middens. Analysis of the growth rings of certain species permits determination of the season in which the shellfish were collected for food, and hence the season in which the middens were occupied. These data are thus useful for clarifying certain aspects of settlement patterns. The present paper adds two species of Chione clam to the list of molluscs used as indicators of archaeological seasonality, and discusses the implications of these findings for understanding prehistoric settlement adaptations on the southern California coast.

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