The 'taphonomy' of the Australian great bowerbird within the Wenlock Goldfields, Cape York Peninsula Queensland

Tutchener, D., Aird, S., Boulden, M., and Cooper, A. (2017) The 'taphonomy' of the Australian great bowerbird within the Wenlock Goldfields, Cape York Peninsula Queensland. Australian Archaeology, 83 (1-2). pp. 71-74.

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Abstract

Bowerbirds are well known for their unique courtship behaviour during which, in an attempt to attract a mate, a male builds a 'bower' or small enclosed structure of woven sticks and pebbles and decorates it with bright shiny objects. The bower provides shade and a place for the male's elaborate courtship dance. This article was prompted by the discovery of an elaborate bower constructed by an Australian Great Bowerbird, Chlamydera nuchalis. The bower was located while undertaking an archaeological survey of the Wenlock Goldfields on the boundary of the Northern Kaanju Indigenous Protected Area in Cape York, Queensland. This bower was constructed using a large number of colonial era artefacts, supporting previous research that indicates a link between the very particular mating behaviour of C. nuchalis and systematic site disturbance. We draw parallels between systematic site disturbance caused by bowerbirds in both pre-colonial and colonial era sites.

Item ID: 49713
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 0312-2417
Keywords: Wenlock, taphonomy, bowerbird, Cape York Peninsula
Funders: Flinders University (FU), Australian Archaeological Association (AAA)
Projects and Grants: FU Fieldwork Grant, AAA Student Research Grant Scheme
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2017 01:16
FoR Codes: 21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2101 Archaeology > 210102 Archaeological Science @ 100%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9505 Understanding Past Societies > 950503 Understanding Australias Past @ 100%
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