For more than ten thousand years, Native Americans from Alaska to southern California relied on aquatic animals such as seals, sea lions, and sea otters for food and raw materials. Archaeological research on the interactions between people and these marine mammals has made great advances recently and provides a unique lens for understanding the human and ecological past. Archaeological research is also emerging as a crucial source of information on contemporary environmental issues as we improve our understanding of the ancient abundance, ecology, and natural history of these species. This groundbreaking interdisciplinary volume brings together archaeologists, biologists, and other scientists to consider how archaeology can inform the conservation and management of pinnipeds and other marine mammals along the Pacific Coast.
Todd J. Braje, Assistant Professor of Anthropology at Humboldt State University, is author of Modern Oceans, Ancient Sites: Archaeology and Marine Conservation on San Miguel Island, California. Torben C. Rick is Curator and Research Scientist in the Department of Anthropology at the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of National History. He is the coeditor, with Jon M. Erlanson, of Human Impacts on Ancient Marine Ecosystems: A Global Perspective (UC Press).