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Article Reference Agropastoral and dietary practices of the northern Levant facing Late Holocene climate and environmental change: Isotopic analysis of plants, animals and humans from Bronze to Iron Age Tell Tweini
One of the largest isotopic datasets of the ancient Eastern Mediterranean region is evaluated, based on plants (n = 410), animals (n = 210) and humans (n = 16) from Tell Tweini (Syria). Diachronic analysis of plant and faunal specimens from four main periods of occupation: Early Bronze Age (2600–2000 BC), Middle Bronze Age (2000–1600 BC), Late Bronze Age (1600–1200 BC) and Iron Age (1200–333 BC) were investigated. Mean Δ13C results from seven plant species reveal emmer and free threshing wheat, olives, bitter vetch, rye grass and barley were adequately or well-watered during all periods of occupation. The grape Δ13C results suggest excellent growing conditions and particular care for its cultivation. The δ15N results indicate that especially the emmer and free threshing wheats received some manure inputs throughout the occupation sequence, while these were likely further increased during the Iron Age, encompassing also the olive groves and grape vineyards. Generally, domestic animals (cattle, sheep, goats) had C3 terrestrial diets and were kept together in similar environments. However, some animals consumed significant amounts of marine or C4 plants, possibly from disturbed habitats due to land use pressure or salt tolerant grasses and shrubs from wetland environments, which were recorded in the direct vicinity of the site. Middle Bronze Age humans consumed a C3 terrestrial diet with no measurable input from C4, freshwater or marine protein sources. Interestingly, the human diet was relatively low in animal protein and appears comparable to what is considered today a typical Mediterranean diet consisting of bread (wheat/barley), olives, grapes, pulses, dairy products and small amounts of meat. The combined isotopic analysis of plants, animals and humans from Tell Tweini represents unbroken links in the food chain which create unparalleled opportunities to enhance our current understanding of environmental conditions, climate change and lifeways in past populations from the Eastern Mediterranean.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Host lifestyle and parasite interspecific facilitation mediate co- infection in a species-poor host–parasite system
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Polydictya lanternflies of Java: New species, taxonomy and identification key (Hemiptera: Fulgoromorpha: Fulgoridae)
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference A new Late Miocene beaked whale (Cetacea, Odontoceti) from the Pisco Formation, and a revised age for the fossil Ziphiidae of Peru
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Avian foraging on an intertidal mudflat succession in the Eocene Tanjung Formation, Asem Asem Basin, South Kalimantan, Indonesia Borneo
Moderately diverse trace fossil assemblages occur in the Eocene Tambak Member of the Tanjung Formation, in the Asem Asem Basin on the southern coast of South Kalimantan. These assemblages are fundamental for establishing depositional models and paleoecological reconstructions for southern Kalimantan during the Eocene and contribute substantially to the otherwise poorly documented fossil record of birds in Island Southeast Asia. Extensive forest cover has precluded previous ichnological analyses in the study area. The traces discussed herein were discovered in newly exposed outcrops in the basal part of the Wahana Baratama coal mine, on the Kalimantan coast of the Java Sea. The Tambak assemblage includes both vertebrate and invertebrate trace fossils. Invertebrate traces observed in this study include Arenicolites, Cylindrichnus, Diplocraterion, Palaeophycus, Planolites, Psilonichnus, Siphonichnus, Skolithos, Thalassinoides, Taenidium, and Trichichnus. Vertebrate-derived trace fossils include nine avian footprint ichnogenera (Aquatilavipes, Archaeornithipus, Ardeipeda, Aviadactyla, cf. Avipeda, cf. Fuscinapeda, cf. Ludicharadripodiscus, and two unnamed forms). A variety of shallow, circular to cylindrical pits and horizontal, singular to paired horizontal grooves preserved in concave epirelief are interpreted as avian feeding and foraging traces. These traces likely represent the activities of small to medium-sized shorebirds and waterbirds like those of living sandpipers, plovers, cranes, egrets, and herons. The pits and grooves are interpreted as foraging traces and occur interspersed with both avian trackways and invertebrate traces. The trace fossils occur preferentially in heterolithic successions with lenticular to flaser bedding, herringbone ripple stratification, and common reactivation surfaces, indicating that the study interval was deposited in a tidally influenced setting. Avian trackways, desiccation cracks, and common rooting indicate that the succession was prone to both subaqueous inundation and periodic subaerial exposure. We infer that the Tambak mixed vertebrate-invertebrate trace fossil association occurred on channel-margin intertidal flats in a tide-influenced estuarine setting. The occurrence of a moderately diverse avian footprint and foraging trace assemblage in the Tambak Member of the Tanjung Formation illustrates that shorebirds and waterbirds have been using wetlands in what is now Kalimantan for their food resources since at least the late Eocene.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Phylogenomics of Psammodynastes and Buhoma (Elapoidea: Serpentes), with the description of a new Asian snake family
Asian mock vipers of the genus Psammodynastes and African forest snakes of the genus Buhoma are two genera belonging to the snake superfamily Elapoidea. The phylogenetic placements of Psammodynastes and Buhoma within Elapoidea has been extremely unstable which has resulted in their uncertain and debated taxonomy. We used ultraconserved elements and traditional nuclear and mitochondrial markers to infer the phylogenetic relationships of these two genera with other elapoids. Psammodynastes, for which a reference genome has been sequenced, were found, with strong branch support, to be a relatively early diverging split within Elapoidea that is sister to a clade consisting of Elapidae, Micrelapidae and Lamprophiidae. Hence, we allocate Psammodynastes to its own family, Psammodynastidae new family. However, the phylogenetic position of Buhoma could not be resolved with a high degree of confidence. Attempts to identify the possible sources of conflict in the rapid radiation of elapoid snakes suggest that both hybridisation/introgression during the rapid diversification, including possible ghost introgression, as well as incomplete lineage sorting likely have had a confounding role. The usual practice of combining mitochondrial loci with nuclear genomic data appears to mislead phylogeny reconstructions in rapid radiation scenarios, especially in the absence of genome scale data.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Whale evolution: Ancient toothed relative of baleen whales breaches northward
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Lessons from assembling UCEs: A comparison of common methods and the case of Clavinomia (Halictidae)
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference Salvation and documentation: additional (probable) type material of South American land-snail species (Gastropoda, Stylommatophora) in the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024
Article Reference The transition between coastal and offshore areas in the North Sea unraveled by suspended particle composition
Identifying the mechanisms that contribute to the variability of suspended particulate matter concentrations in coastal areas is important but difficult, especially due to the complexity of physical and biogeochemical interactions involved. Our study addresses this complexity and investigates changes in the horizontal spread and composition of particles, focusing on cross-coastal gradients in the southern North Sea and the English Channel. A semi-empirical model is applied on in situ data of SPM and its organic fraction to resolve the relationship between organic and inorganic suspended particles. The derived equations are applied onto remote sensing products of SPM concentration, which provide monthly synoptic maps of particulate organic matter concentrations (here, particulate organic nitrogen) at the surface together with their labile and less reactive fractions. Comparing these fractions of particulate organic matter reveals their characteristic features along the coastal-offshore gradient, with an area of increased settling rate for particles generally observed between 5 and 30 km from the coast. We identify this area as the transition zone between coastal and offshore waters with respect to particle dynamics. Presumably, in that area, the turbulence range and particle composition favor particle settling, while hydrodynamic processes tend to transport particles of the seabed back towards the coast. Bathymetry plays an important role in controlling the range of turbulent dissipation energy values in the water column, and we observe that the transition zone in the southern North Sea is generally confined to water depths below 20 m. Seasonal variations in suspended particle dynamics are linked to biological processes enhancing particle flocculation, which do not affect the location of the transition zone. We identify the criteria that allow a transition zone and discuss the cases where it is not observed in the domain. The impact of these particle dynamics on coastal carbon storage and export is discussed.
Located in Library / RBINS Staff Publications 2024 OA