Small Specialized Hunting Sites and their Role
in Epigravettian Subsistence Strategies
A case Study in Northern Italy
Marco PERESANI, Rossella DUCHES, Riccardo MIOLO,
Matteo ROMANDINI, Sara ZIGGIOTTI
This case study focuses on the debate concerning “hunting camps” (“halte de chasse”). Zooarchaeological, lithic and functional data lead us to interpret the Epigravettian site of Grotta del Clusantin as being linked with activities oriented toward the hunting of rodent colonies living near the site, along with a small number of ungulates. In the context of an advanced occupation of the highlands, this site appears to have been a specialized, perhaps intermittently occupied camp, oriented toward immediate consumption rather than being a part of a structured economic system involving a spatio-temporal division in the exploitation of marmot carcasses. In terms of ecological evolution, the Pradis Plateau can be thus viewed as one of the first hunting basins occupied during the middle Late Glacial interstadial and even shortly after, before the Epigravettian dispersion to other pre-alpine plateaus above 1000 m in altitude. The recent discovery of this marmot hunting camp contributes to our knowledge of hunter-gatherer behavior from the Late Glacial period until the beginning of the Holocene.