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Manzanares Valley (Madrid, Spain): A good country for Proboscideans and Neanderthals

AuthorsPanera Gallego, Joaquín; Rubio-Jara, Susana; Yravedra, José; Blain, H. A.; Sesé, Carmen ; Pérez-González, Alfredo
Issue Date2014
CitationQuaternary International, 326-327: 329-343
AbstractThis paper presents the findings from four sites with proboscidean remains associated with Middle Palaeolithic stone tools from the Manzanares Valley Complex Terrace of Butarque (CTB), which has been dated to between the final Middle Pleistocene (MIS 6, 190e130 ka) and the early Late Pleistocene (MIS 5,130-74-71 ka). We review the direct and indirect evidence of proboscidean exploitation in the Middle Paleolithic sites of Europe, and provide information on Lower Paleolithic European sites with proboscidean remains and stone tools. Geological, chronological, bio-stratigraphic and climatic data of the CTB are provided, and the sites with proboscidean remains and Middle Palaeolithic stone tools are described in detail. Systematic exploitation of large mammals during the Middle Palaeolithic, and even their regular hunting, is widely accepted. However, the exploitation of proboscideans is not as evident in the archaeological record of this period. The exploitation of proboscideans cannot be considered as merely occasional before the Upper Palaeolithic, and although there is more evidence of the exploitation of these mega-herbivores during the Lower than during the Middle Palaeolithic, the discoveries from the Manzanares Valley state that, at least in this area, proboscideans continued to play an important role with regards to the exploitation of the environmental resources.
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