NEARCOAST will advance our understanding of Neanderthal behavioural and foraging ecology, and the role of coastal environments to Neanderthal adaptive capacity and resilience through the Middle Palaeolithic. The project will apply a suite of bioarchaeological and molecular techniques on faunal remains recovered from key Neanderthal coastal sites (Figueira Brava, Complejo del Humo, Los Aviones and Üçağızlı II) located between the eastern Mediterranean and the Atlantic Europe. NEARCOAST will test the hypotheses that i) investment in shellfish procurement responded to a longitudinal gradient in intertidal profitability; ii) intertidal resources were mostly secured in colder months of the year, in response to the seasonally controlled altitudinal mobility of large ungulates, as proposed for Upper Palaeolithic and Mesolihic groups in these region. The fellow (Asier García-Escárzaga) is an archaeologist who integrates malacology, trace elements and shell stable isotopic analysis to study Mesolithic coastal adaptation. With NEARCOAST he will expand his research portfolio to the Middle Palaeolithic and receive training in vertebrate zooarchaeology, palaeoproteomic and on recent developments in trace elements. The project will elevate our scientific and public knowledge on Neanderthal coastal adaptation. It will expand the fellow’s transferable and specific skills in bioarchaeology, while placing him in a unique position for a career independence. NEARCOAST will make an impact in the field of Middle Palaeolithic Archaeology, and so doing will enhance the visibility of the fellow and institutions involved. The fellow will be supervised by Colonese (PI of the ERC-CoG project TRADITION), and will be part of the new generation of biomolecular archaeologists trained at the Department of Prehistory and the Institute of Environmental Science and Technology.
Fields of science
- HORIZON.1.2 - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Actions (MSCA) Main Programme