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November 24, 2016

Ancient Pueblo People Bred Turkeys at 200 BCE

Archaeologists have found that the Pueblo people bred turkeys as far back as 200 BCE during the Basketmaker II era from 400 BCE-500 CE. They were used as a food source and for turkey feathers for blankets. Archaeologist Bill Lipe said that turkeys were primarily eaten at feasts and ritual gatherings. Later in Pueblo history, deers were being hunted out and replaced by turkeys. Archaeologists see that deer bones were being replaced by turkey bones as time went on. Lipe says that raising one turkey a year would require diverting lots of maize to raise the turkey. Turkey consumption peaked in the 1200’s, followed by depopulation. Perhaps the cost of raising turkeys contributed to the exodus, as maize was being used up in times of drought to raise turkeys.

PhyOrg has the report here;
http://phys.org/news/2016-11-turkeys-major-ancestral-pueblo-life.html

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