Charles P. Egeland

My research is geared towards tracking the interactions of Paleolithic (stone tool-using) human cultures with their environments. I approach this within an evolutionary framework generally, and a behavioral ecological perspective (i.e., how behavior contributes to reproductive success) specifically. My methodological specialty is the identification and analysis of animal bones (zooarchaeology), which can inform human paleoecology through the reconstruction of both diet and subsistence behavior and ancient environments. Much of my research is also grounded in and informed by: (1) taphonomy, or how sites transition from the biosphere to the lithosphere and (2) actualism, or the observation of contemporary processes and their effects, in both tightly controlled experimental and more naturalistic contexts, to give meaning to the prehistoric record.

There are 27 included publications by Charles P. Egeland :

TitleDateViewsBrief Description
Bagratashen 1, a stratified open-air Middle Paleolithic site in the Debed River Valley of northeastern Armenia: a preliminary report 2016 116 The southern Caucasus is home to a particularly rich record of Middle Paleolithic (MP) occupation. However, the potential contribution of the southern Caucasus to broader discussions of MP behavior and adaptations has remained largely unfulfilled bec...
Beyond leopards: tooth marks and the contribution of multiple carnivore taxa to the accumulation of the Swartkrans Member 3 fossil assemblage 2004 2533 The ca. 1.0 myr old fauna from Swartkrans Member 3 (South Africa) preserves abundant indication of carnivore activity in the form of tooth marks (including pits) on many bone surfaces. This direct paleontological evidence is used to test a recent sug...
Carcass processing intensity and cutmark creation: An experimental approach 2003 2152 Cutmarks observed in archaeofaunal assemblages are an important source of evidence in the reconstruction of prehistoric butchery strategies. Inherent in these reconstructions is the assumed covariance of the intensity of butchery activities and the r...
The Coffin Bison Kill (5JA7): bridging perspectives on the past at the door to North Park, Colorado 2015 72 A growing body of research is geared towards bridging the blurred perspectives of archaeology and ethnohistory into cohesive statements about the pre- and post-contact history of the Northern Great Plains to elaborate upon the highly dynamic cultural...
The contribution of limb bone fracture patterns to reconstructing early hominid behavior at Swartkrans Cave (South Africa): archaeological application of a new analytical method 2004 58 Recently, Alcántara García et al. (in press) presented a new method and criteria for distinguishing between fractures imparted by hominid hammerstone percussion and carnivores chewing on ‘green’ limb bones of ungulates. The method uses a combination ...
Cruel traces: bone surface modifications and their relevance to forensic science 2020 0 The reconstruction of perimortem and postmortem events is of critical importance to criminal investigations. In many cases, the information required for these reconstructions can be accessed through the analysis of skeletal remains. One particular cl...
Did Homo erectus kill a Pelorovis herd at BK (Olduvai Gorge)? A taphonomic study of BK5 2015 90 New research and excavations at Bell Korongo (BK, Olduvai Gorge, Upper Bed II) have uncovered a dense concentration of megafauna that contributes to our understanding of Homo erectus subsistence strategies around 1.34 Ma. Recent work has yielded clea...
Disentangling Early Stone Age palimpsests: determining the functional independence of hominid- and carnivore-derived portions of archaeofaunas 2004 1852 Determining the extent to which hominid- and carnivore-derived components of fossil bone palimpsests formed independently of each other can provide valuable information to paleoanthropologists interested in reconstructing the foraging adaptations of ...
Experimental determinations of cutmark orientation and the reconstruction of prehistoric butchery behavior 2014 90 The frequency, anatomical location, and orientation of stone tool cutmarks have all been widely employed in reconstructions of ancient butchery practices. Cutmark orientation in particular has great potential to inform on various aspects of past beha...
Experimental patterns of hammerstone percussion damage on bones: implications for inferences of carcass processing by humans 2006 3921 The common occurrence of hammerstone percussion damage (pits, striae, notches and impact flakes) on the fossil limb bones of ungulates indicates that marrow extraction has been an important component of hominid butchery for over two million years. Be...
FLK West (Lower Bed II, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania): a new early Acheulean site with evidence for human exploitation of fauna 2017 71 This paper presents a detailed taphonomic study of the faunal assemblage from FLK West (Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania), a site with an Acheulean component that dates to 1.7 Ma. The faunal sample analysed here is distributed in different archaeological leve...
Geochemical and physical characterization of lithic raw materials in the Olduvai Basin, Tanzania 2019 24 The invention and proliferation of stone tool technology in the Early Stone Age (ESA) marks a watershed in human evolution. Patterns of lithic procurement, manufacture, use, and discard have much to tell us about ESA hominin cognition and land use. H...
Hominin skeletal part abundances and claims of deliberate disposal of corpses in the Middle Pleistocene 2018 70 Humans are set apart from other organisms by the realization of their own mortality. Thus, determining the prehistoric emergence of this capacity is of significant interest to understanding the uniqueness of the human animal. Tracing that capacity ch...
An inter-site comparison of enamel hypoplasia in bison: implications for paleoecology and modeling Late Plains Archaic subsistence 2004 1916 Bison bison mandibular molars from the Late Plains Archaic kill/butchery sites of Buffalo Creek (Wyoming) and Kaplan-Hoover (Colorado) exhibit significant frequencies of dental enamel hypoplasia (DEH), a defect believed to reflect information about p...
The larger mammal palimpsest from TK (Thiongo Korongo), Bed II, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania 2016 50 Ever since Mary Leakey's initial excavations in the 1960s, TK (Thiongo Korongo) has been recognized as one of Olduvai Gorge's most important Acheulean sites. The significant concentrations of lithics and fauna reported by Mary Leakey have been augmen...
New data and ideas on the foraging behaviour of Early Stone Age hominids at Swartkrans Cave, South Africa 2004 1240 New data and Interpretations presented in this paper update and augment the previous state of knowledge of early hominid subsistence behaviour at Swartkrans Cave during the formation of the Member 3 depositional unit (c. 1.0 million years 8g0). Un...
On meat eating and human evolution: a taphonomic analysis of BK4b (Upper Bed II, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania), and its bearing on hominin megafaunal consumption 2014 49 Recent archaeological work at BK has uncovered abundant taphonomic evidence of megafaunal exploitation by 1.34 Ma hominins. Butchery of small, medium-sized and large carcasses at the site indicate that meat consumption was a crucial adaptive element ...
The origin of the Acheulean: the 1.7 million-year-old site of FLK West, Olduvai Gorge (Tanzania) 2015 45 The appearance of the Acheulean is one of the hallmarks of human evolution. It represents the emergence of a complex behavior, expressed in the recurrent manufacture of large-sized tools, with standardized forms, implying more advance forethought and...
Reconnaissance survey for Paleolithic sites in the Debed River Valley, northern Armenia 2014 89 The southern Caucasus is a critical region for those interested in Palaeolithic research because of its varied topography and location at the crossroads of Europe, Africa, and Asia. Modern Armenia sits at the heart of this area, but has until now pla...
Taphonomic estimates of competition and the role of carnivore avoidance in hominin site use within the Early Pleistocene Olduvai Basin 2014 120 It has become increasingly clear among paleoanthropologists that Early Pleistocene sites sample a diversity of behaviors and no one model is sufficient to explain every collection of archaeological debris. With this comes the realization that hominin...
Taphonomic perspectives on hominid site use and foraging strategies during Bed II times at Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania 2008 2792 The faunal assemblages excavated by Mary Leakey in Bed II of Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania, have, like the more well-known Bed I assemblages, traditionally been interpreted as the result of hominid butchering activities in the lake margin and riverine sett...
The taphonomy of fallow deer (Dama dama) skeletons from Denmark and its bearing on the pre-Weichselian occupation of northern Europe by humans 2014 133 The ecological tolerances of Neandertals, their ability to subsist in the dense forests of full interglacials, and their capacity to colonize northern latitudes are the subject of ongoing debate. The site of Hollerup (northern Denmark) lies at the no...
Testing the “shift in the balance of power” hypothesis at Swartkrans, South Africa: Hominid cave use and subsistence behavior in the Early Pleistocene 2008 2485 C.K. Brain documented two interesting patterns in the Pleistocene faunas of Swartkrans Cave, South Africa: (1) The earliest depositional units, Members 1 and 2, preserve high numbers of hominid fossils, while the numbers drop sharply in the more rece...
Unraveling hominid behavior at another anthropogenic site from Olduvai Gorge (Tanzania): new archaeological, taphonomic and technological research at BK, Bed II 2009 2426 New archaeological excavations and research at BK, Upper Bed II (Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania) have yielded a rich and unbiased collection of fossil bones. These new excavations show that BK is a stratified deposit formed in a riverine setting close to an...
The use of bone surface modifications to model hominid lifeways during the Oldowan 2012 134 Ever since the ground-breaking taphonomic work of Bunn (1981) and Potts (Potts and Shipman, 1981) documented cut marks on bones from early Pleistocene deposits at Olduvai Gorge and Koobi Fora, bone surface modifications have played an increasingly pr...
Using GIS and ecological variables to identify high potential areas for paleoanthropological survey: an example from northern Armenia 2009 87 The timing and nature of the initial hominid dispersals from Africa during the Plio-Pleistocene (here 2.0-1.5 million years ago [MYR]) is an issue of great interest for paleoanthropology. However, the biological, technological, and ecological context...
Zooarchaeology and taphonomy of FLK North 5 2007 125 The assemblage from Level 5 of the FLK North locality is particularly interesting because unlike many Bed I sites (except FLK North North Level 1, see Chapter 12), no systematic taphonomic data have been presented for the large mammal subassemblage s...