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Middle to Late Archaic Period Changes in Terrestrial Resource Exploitation Along the Los Peñasquitos Creek Watershed in Western San Diego County: Vertebrate Faunal Evidence from the Scripps Poway Parkway Site (CA-SDI-4608)

  • Author(s): Tuma, Michael W.
  • et al.
Abstract

Archaic Period subsistence data recovered from two temporally distinct features at the Scripps Poway Parkway site (CA-SDI-4608) were assessed in an analysis of differences between Middle and Late Archaic Period subsistence practices at inland sites along the Los Penasquitos watershed. The Late Archaic sample was hypothesized to show evidence of a more intensive terrestrial focus, exhibiting greater proportions of deer and Leporid species, and greater species diversity, due to more intensified exploitation of terrestrial resources in response to degradation of the coastal habitat at Los Penasquitos Lagoon following increased sediment flux ca. 3,500 B.P. Although species diversity measures were essentially equal between the samples, indicating cultural continuity rather than cultural change between Middle and Late Archaic Periods, species proportions by bone weight indicated a higher reliance on Leporid species during the Late Archaic Period, which may have been in response to an overharvest of deer, indicating intensification on terrestrial resources. Los Penasquitos Lagoon, which remained open and tidally flushed throughout the Late Holocene, was nonetheless affected by sediment flux and habitat degradation, which necessitated an intensification on terrestrial resources.

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