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The ecology of late mesolithic woodland disturbances : model testing with fungal spore assemblage data.

Innes, J. B. and Blackford, J. J. (2003) 'The ecology of late mesolithic woodland disturbances : model testing with fungal spore assemblage data.', Journal of archaeological science., 30 (2). pp. 185-194.


Pollen, charcoal and fungal spore analysis of the base of a radiocarbon-dated peat profile at North Gill, North York Moors, N.E. England, provides detailed evidence for an episode of fire-disturbance of woodland atc . 6300 (uncalibrated), within the Late Mesolithic cultural period. As with other similar episodes in the uplands of Britain, the pollen data documents post-disturbance regeneration to woodland through ruderal and grassland herb, heath and successional shrub plant communities. Such seral ecological changes have previously been interpreted as the desired result of deliberate disturbance by Mesolithic foragers, as part of a conscious land-use strategy designed to attract ungulate populations to the disturbed areas and increase hunting efficiency and yield. Fungal spore analyses through the North Gill disturbance phase support the indirect ecological inferences from the pollen and charcoal data, provide the first circumstantial evidence of animal concentration in post-fire disturbed areas during the Late Mesolithic and so test and support the basic ecological premise of the Late Mesolithic fire ecology/land-use model.

Item Type:Article
Keywords:Mesolithic, Disturbance, Fire ecology, Fungal spores, North York Moors, Palynology.
Full text:Full text not available from this repository.
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Record Created:17 Nov 2006
Last Modified:19 Mar 2010 15:11

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