Photogrammetry, spatial patterning, and site formation of the hominin-bearing layers at the Lower Paleolithic site of Dmanisi, Georgia

Reed Allen Coil, Martha Tappen, Reid Ferring, Maia Bukhsianidze, David Lordkipanidze

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper

Abstract

The Lower Paleolithic site of Dmanisi, Georgia, is well known for its rich archaeological and paleontological deposits, which include bones from at least five individuals attributed to Homo erectus. Taphonomic analyses show that carnivores contributed greatly to the accumulation of faunal material, while contributions by hominins were present, but uncommon. Recent excavations in the hominin-bearing layers of Block 2 at Dmanisi have revealed a complex underlying basalt formation that likely dictated much of the site formation processes, both biotic and abiotic. Combining spatial patterning with a 3D model of the excavation generated using Agisoft Photoscan, we identify several areas where the basalt, and the pseudo-karstic pipe and gully formations, have constrained the deposition of material. 3D bone orientations in many areas show strong correlations to the underlying shape of the basalt formation. In addition, spatial patterning of the lithic and faunal material differs depending on stratigraphic layer, which is also controlled largely by the basalt and pipe/gully formations. The distribution of coprolites, however, is independent of these patterns, possibly indicating spatially discrete carnivore activity.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2018
EventSociety for American Archaeology - Washington, DC , United States
Duration: Apr 11 2018 → …

Conference

ConferenceSociety for American Archaeology
CountryUnited States
CityWashington, DC
Period4/11/18 → …

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    Coil, R. A., Tappen, M., Ferring, R., Bukhsianidze, M., & Lordkipanidze, D. (Accepted/In press). Photogrammetry, spatial patterning, and site formation of the hominin-bearing layers at the Lower Paleolithic site of Dmanisi, Georgia. Paper presented at Society for American Archaeology , Washington, DC , United States.