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Dama Dentition: A New Tooth Eruption and Wear Method for Assessing the Age of Fallow Deer (Dama dama)
2016-11, Bowen, Frazer, Carden, Ruth F., Daujat, Julie, et al.
Reliable ageing techniques for wild animals are notoriously challenging to develop because of the scarcity of sizeable collections of known-age specimens. Without such techniques it is difficult to reconstruct hunting patterns, which is a significant problem for the examination of assemblages from pre-farming cultures. This paper presents a new method, based on mandibular tooth eruption and wear, for assessing the age of fallow deer. The method was developed from a large collection (n = 156) of known-age Dama dama specimens, has been blind tested by members of the zooarchaeological community and represents a user-friendly system with the potential to generate large compatible datasets through which the dynamics of human–Dama relationships can be examined. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.