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The Archaeology and Historical Ecology of Small Scale Economies$
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Victor D. Thompson and James C. Waggoner Jr.

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780813042428

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2013

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813042428.001.0001

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Hunter-Gatherers, Endemic Island Mammals, and the Historical Ecology of California's Channel Islands

Hunter-Gatherers, Endemic Island Mammals, and the Historical Ecology of California's Channel Islands

Chapter:
(p.41) 3 Hunter-Gatherers, Endemic Island Mammals, and the Historical Ecology of California's Channel Islands
Source:
The Archaeology and Historical Ecology of Small Scale Economies
Author(s):

Torben C. Rick

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813042428.003.0003

Separated from the mainland throughout the Quaternary, California's Channel Islands contain a depauperate terrestrial fauna, including a limited number of terrestrial mammals. With a few exceptions, determining when and by what means (human assisted, natural, or combination) many of these animals colonized the islands is unclear. Part of the problem is that few studies have systematically reviewed the fossil and archaeological records of Channel Island mammals. This chapter presents an analysis and synthesis of the origins of Channel Island endemic mammals, concluding these species arrived through a combination of natural and human-assisted dispersals. These data provide context for understanding the structure and function of Channel Island ecosystems and the role of ancient hunter-gatherers in influencing island ecosystems.

Keywords:   Pacific Coast, island fox, island spotted skunk, deer mouse, island ecology, human environmental interactions

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