Understanding Climate Change Through Archaeology

Understanding Climate Change Through Archaeology

You’ve seen ancient bones uncovered by archaeologists in museums, dusty and mysterious, and learned something new about the past. For a zooarchaeologist, bones will give up more secrets than most. Join Mike Etnier, zooarchaeologist at Western Washington University, as he exposes the secrets of bones.

In videos A Zooarchaeologist’s Take on Climate Change and Using Middens as Time Machines, Etnier displays bones found in sites once occupied by ancient hunters along the edge of the Pacific Ocean, and describes using those bones to discover information about the distant past. His work investigates how the populations and habitat ranges of animals like the Northern Fur Seal have changed over time due to weather events and human interaction, and even uncovers evidence of past climate shifts. Etnier’s findings add more robust data to our ever-growing understanding of Earth’s climate past.

[ video ] Using Middens As Time Machines
[ video ] A Zooarchaeologist’s Take on Climate Change

People: Mike Etnier, Shawn Larson

Frontier Scientists presents videos about Understanding Climate Change Through Archaeology (Laura Nielsen) Historical Climate
Sea otters and kelp forests helping you (Laura Nielsen) Conservation, Historical Climate
Proxy data from past climates (Laura Nielsen) Historical Climate
A forest revealed under glacial ice (Laura Nielsen) Biology, Historical Climate
New insights: global warming drivers in the 20th century and beyond (Laura Nielsen) Climate Change
Orbital dynamics and climate (Laura Nielsen) The Earth in Space, Historical Climate
Arctic volcanism helps date ancient archaeological sites (Liz O’Connell) Volcanoes, Arctic Archaeology
Climate change and the people of the mesa (Ned Rozell) Arctic Archaeology, Historical Climate
International Polar Week and Climate Predictions in Ice (Laura Nielsen) Historical Climate, Climate Change
“This is not what we expected” said Julie Brigham-Grette in video describing work at Lake El’gygytgyn (Liz O’Connell) Historical Climate
Sunken Treasure under Lake El’gygytgyn (Laura Nielsen) Historical Climate

Osteoarcheology - finds from a midden. / Attribution John Tustin (Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license)

Osteoarcheology – finds from a midden. / Attribution John Tustin (Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 2.0 license)

Understanding Climate Change Through Archaeology project

Related: Arctic Archaeology, Paleo-Eskimo Camp

See our projects highlighting Alaska-area Native culture: Petroglyphs & Alutiiq Weavers


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