A zooarchaeological analysis of the Skadeland site (13CK402): a Mill Creek culture occupation in northwest Iowa.
Margaret S. Mook
The late prehistoric entity of the Mill Creek cultures underwent extensive research during the 1960s and 1970s to address the effects of climate change on Mill Creek populations in northwest Iowa. Through this research numerous sites have been excavated including the currently unanalyzed site of Skadeland, which is the focus of my research. Previous Mill Creek faunal analyses have examined faunal remains to record abundance and focused on the exploitation of bison as a food resource, which neglects the numerous small mammals, avian and aquatic resources found at these sites. Therefore, the objective of my research is to address Mill Creek people's exploitation of all faunal resources at the Skadeland site (13CK402) using a taphonomically informed approach to zooarchaeological analysis. This method provides new details about late prehistoric faunal exploitation and creates a data set that can be used to draw comparisons with other late prehistoric faunal assemblages. To determine the economic and symbolic value of faunal resources, my research examines ethnographic and ethno-historic records of animal exploitation on the northern plains for evidence of cultural and subsistence values placed on species.