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1 April 2017 People of the Clam: Shellfish and Diet in Coastal Maine Late Archaic and Ceramic Period Sites
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Abstract

Relatively few shell midden sites around the Gulf of Maine have been excavated and analyzed for the quantity of shellfish incorporated into the site. Such data would help us understand the intensity of past shellfish-harvesting pressure on nearby shellfish beds, and the ef fects of shellfish collection on settlement patterns. Moreover , the relative amounts of protein contributed to diet by shellfish versus vertebrates, based on the remains discarded in the midden, indicate that shellfish may have provided the majority of dietary protein. In particular, the softshell clam (Mya arenaria) was of primary importance to regional coastal subsistence and not just a bad-w eather, last-resort food.

Arthur E. Spiess "People of the Clam: Shellfish and Diet in Coastal Maine Late Archaic and Ceramic Period Sites," Journal of the North Atlantic 10(sp10), 105-112, (1 April 2017). https://doi.org/10.3721/037.002.sp1010
Published: 1 April 2017
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