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Early Goats in Bali, Indonesia: Stable Isotope Analyses of Diet and Movement

Journal Article


Abstract


  • Two thousand years ago, maritime trade flourished in Southeast Asia and archaeological excavations have revealed that Island Southeast Asia played an important role within developing trading networks. The sites of Sembiran and Pacung on the north coast of Bali, Indonesia, have produced a wide range of artifacts that demonstrate links to mainland and island Asia. Here, we examine faunal remains from these sites to assess the role that livestock played in north Bali diet and trade at that time. In addition to abundant pig (Sus cf. scrofa) remains, the sites yielded the earliest securely dated goat (Capra hircus) remains known from Southeast Asia. Moreover carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and strontium stable isotope analyses of bone collagen and tooth apatite indicate that some of these goats were from a markedly different environment than the pig, human, and dog remains from the sites. It is likely that these goats were imported from a different region—possibly South Asia—where they fed on C 4 plants such as millet. This provides evidence that livestock were included in regional exchange networks, and prompts the question as to why goat remains are absent from Mainland Southeast Asia archaeological sites despite their presence in South Asia, East Asia, and Island Southeast Asia.

Publication Date


  • 2018

Citation


  • Fenner, J. N., Jones, R. K., Piper, P. J., Llewellin, M., Gagan, M. K., Prasetyo, B., & Calo, A. (2018). Early Goats in Bali, Indonesia: Stable Isotope Analyses of Diet and Movement. Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology, 13(4), 563-581. doi:10.1080/15564894.2017.1325421

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85019640608

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 563

End Page


  • 581

Volume


  • 13

Issue


  • 4

Abstract


  • Two thousand years ago, maritime trade flourished in Southeast Asia and archaeological excavations have revealed that Island Southeast Asia played an important role within developing trading networks. The sites of Sembiran and Pacung on the north coast of Bali, Indonesia, have produced a wide range of artifacts that demonstrate links to mainland and island Asia. Here, we examine faunal remains from these sites to assess the role that livestock played in north Bali diet and trade at that time. In addition to abundant pig (Sus cf. scrofa) remains, the sites yielded the earliest securely dated goat (Capra hircus) remains known from Southeast Asia. Moreover carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and strontium stable isotope analyses of bone collagen and tooth apatite indicate that some of these goats were from a markedly different environment than the pig, human, and dog remains from the sites. It is likely that these goats were imported from a different region—possibly South Asia—where they fed on C 4 plants such as millet. This provides evidence that livestock were included in regional exchange networks, and prompts the question as to why goat remains are absent from Mainland Southeast Asia archaeological sites despite their presence in South Asia, East Asia, and Island Southeast Asia.

Publication Date


  • 2018

Citation


  • Fenner, J. N., Jones, R. K., Piper, P. J., Llewellin, M., Gagan, M. K., Prasetyo, B., & Calo, A. (2018). Early Goats in Bali, Indonesia: Stable Isotope Analyses of Diet and Movement. Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology, 13(4), 563-581. doi:10.1080/15564894.2017.1325421

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-85019640608

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 563

End Page


  • 581

Volume


  • 13

Issue


  • 4