The Alaska Consortium of Zooarchaeologists is a volunteer organization dedicated to improving the faunal comparative collection housed at the University of Alaska Anchorage. This reference collection is available to researchers working with northern and Alaskan archaeological faunal materials. Furthermore, the Alaska Consortium of Zooarchaeologists aims to exchange information and ideas with the community and other archaeologists through workshops, presentations, and sponsoring symposia.
Members include teachers, trappers, professional zooarchaeologists, students, biologists, and archaeologists. Anybody wih an interest in the study of animal bones, hair, and shell, particularly in northern areas, is invited to join.
There are no dues, but as a non-profit organization we do welcome donations. Some donate money, time, or goods. Any help is appreciated.
PO Box 240613
Anchorage, AK 99524-0613
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What is Zooarchaeology? Zooarchaeology, sometimes called archaeozoology or faunal analysis, is the study of animal bones found at archaeological sites. By examining these old animal bones, researchers are able to figure out what people ate, whether they hunted or raised animals, and even what the environment was like long ago. Animal bones can be useful for carbon, nitrogen, and oxygen isotope analyses and DNA analyses. Usually, zooarchaeologists will first identify what animals the bones came from using modern bones as a reference—these modern bones are called Faunal Comparative Collections.
Faunal comparative collections can be made up of many different animals such as birds, fish, land and sea mammals, and even shells. It's best to have animals of different ages, and males and females of the same species—for some animals, males and females can be of drastically different sizes.
The Alaska Consortium of Zooarchaeologists is an interest group of the larger Alaska Anthropological Association, and has a cooperative agreement with the Department of Anthropology at the University of Alaska Anchorage, where the comparative collection is held.