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Zoolog Sci. 2004 Jul;21(7):771-83.

Distribution of albatross remains in the Far East regions during the Holocene, based on zooarchaeological remains.

Author information

1
School of Agricultural and Life Sciences, University of Tokyo, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113-8657, Japan. edagsc@mbox.nc.kyushu-u.ac.jp

Abstract

Many albatross remains have been found in the Japanese Islands and the surrounding areas, such as Sakhalin and South Korea. These remains are interesting for two reasons: numerous sites from which albatross remains have been found are located in coastal regions of the Far East where no albatrosses have been distributed recently, and there are some sites in which albatross remains represent a large portion of avian remains, although albatrosses are not easily preyed upon by human beings. We collected data on albatross remains from archaeological sites in the Far East regions during the Holocene and arranged the remains geographically, temporally and in terms of quantity. Based on these results, we showed that coastal areas along the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan have rarely been used by albatrosses in Modern times, though formerly there were many albatrosses. We proposed two explanations for the shrinkage of their distributional range: excessive hunting in the breeding areas, and distributional changes of prey for albatrosses.

PMID:
15277721
DOI:
10.2108/zsj.21.771
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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