Early Weaning of Neolithic Domestic Cattle ( Bercy , France ) Revealed by Intra - tooth Variation in Nitrogen Isotope Ratios

  • Balasse M
  • Tresset A
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Abstract

See, stats, and : https : / / www . researchgate . net / publication / 222407088 Early (Bercy , France) Revealed - tooth Variation Article DOI : 10 . 1006 / jasc . 2001 . 0725 CITATIONS 100 READS 134 2 , including : Some : Small_Mam_Recol Beg - er - Vil Anne Muséum ' Histoire 96 , 220 SEE All . The . All - text and , letting . Evaluating the role of milk production in prehistoric subsistence economies requires a better estimation of the capacity of a milk - oriented husbandry under prehistoric conditions . Weaning pattern , which is linked to the length of lactation , is an important parameter in this estimation . In this study , weaning pattern is closely examined in Neolithic cattle from the site of Bercy (Paris , France , c . 4000 ) , by a study of intra - tooth (M1 , M2) variation in the nitrogen isotope ratios (15 N) of dentine collagen . Collagen 15 N is commonly used to trace the change of trophic level at weaning time . The pattern of change in collagen 15 N in the first molar of two archaeological bovines is then compared with that observed in modern cattle weaned at known age . Results suggest that the Neolithic calves were weaned early . This could reflect either a shorter lactation for Neolithic cows , or early weaning imposed by the herder in order to reserve a bigger proportion of milk production for human consumption .

Author-supplied keywords

  • COLLAGEN
  • DENTINE
  • MILK PRODUCTION
  • NEOLITHIC
  • NITROGEN ISOTOPE RATIOS
  • WEANING

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Authors

  • Marie Balasse

  • Anne Tresset

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