Excrements of Herbivores

Brönnimann, David and Ismail-Meyer, Kristin and Rentzel, Philippe and Pümpin, Christine and Lisá, Lenka. (2017) Excrements of Herbivores. In: Archaeological Soil and Sediment Micromorphology. New York, pp. 55-66.

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Shape, preservation, embedded components and groundmass characteristics allow distinction between herbivore excrements and the coprolites of omnivores or carnivores. Herbivore dung remains may occur in a wide range of onsite archaeological features but are also known from offsite situations. Fresh herbivore excrements are usually porous, loosely packed and consist mainly of poorly digested to undigested plant fragments, which are sometimes embedded in a brown to dark brown amorphous organic groundmass. Ruminant and horse excrements mainly consist of poorly digested plant fragments. Rodent excrements can be found in archaeological sediments. Because of the high organic content of herbivore excrements, dried ruminant dung is an excellent fuel, used since prehistoric times and still in use today, mainly in dry regions. Stabling or enclosure sediments have a lower porosity than equivalent unaffected excrements and show an impact of sediment agglomerates, mineral grains and other components due to trampling processes.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Integrative Biologie > Integrative Prähistorische und Naturwissenschaftliche Archäologie (IPNA)
05 Faculty of Science > Departement Umweltwissenschaften > Ehemalige Einheiten Umweltwissenschaften > Geoarchäologie (Rentzel)
UniBasel Contributors:Pümpin, Christine and Brönnimann, David and Rentzel, Philippe and Ismail-Meyer, Kristin M.
Item Type:Book Section, refereed
Book Section Subtype:Further Contribution in a Book
Publisher:John Wiley & Sons
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Book item
Last Modified:22 Nov 2017 13:24
Deposited On:22 Nov 2017 13:24

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