Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New excavations in Sweden indicate use of fertilizers 5,000 years ago

Date:
April 26, 2013
Source:
University of Gothenburg
Summary:
Researchers have spent many years studying the remains of a Stone Age community in Karleby outside the town of Falköping, Sweden. The researchers have for example tried to identify parts of the inhabitants' diet. Right now they are looking for evidence that fertilizers were used already during the Scandinavian Stone Age, and the results of their first analyses may be exactly what they are looking for.

Researchers from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have spent many years studying the remains of a Stone Age community in Karleby outside the town of Falköping, Sweden. The researchers have for example tried to identify parts of the inhabitants' diet. Right now they are looking for evidence that fertilisers were used already during the Scandinavian Stone Age, and the results of their first analyses may be exactly what they are looking for.
Credit: University of Gothenburg

Researchers from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have spent many years studying the remains of a Stone Age community in Karleby outside the town of Falköping, Sweden. The researchers have for example tried to identify parts of the inhabitants' diet. Right now they are looking for evidence that fertilisers were used already during the Scandinavian Stone Age, and the results of their first analyses may be exactly what they are looking for.

Using remains of grains and other plants and some highly advanced analysis techniques, the two researchers and archaeologists Tony Axelsson and Karl-Göran Sjögren have been able to identify parts of the diet of their Stone Age ancestors.

'Our first task was to find so-called macrofossils, such as old weed seeds or pieces of grain. By analysing macrofossils, we can learn a lot about Stone Age farming and how important farming was in relation to livestock ranching,' says Axelsson.

Another aim has been to collect animal bone material -- or simply 5,000 year old food remains. The researchers know that pieces of bones from cattle, pigs and sheep can be found at the site.

'By studying the levels of isotopes in the bones, we can for example find out where the animals were raised, which in turn can give important information about their role in trade,' says Sjögren.

The results of the first grain analyses have now been presented, and besides revealing that both barley and wheat were farmed at the site, they point to elevated levels of the isotope N15 (nitrogen 15). The elevated levels may indicate that fertilisers were used in the area of Karleby already 5,000 years ago.

'We will continue our analyses both in the field and in the lab, and are hoping to find more macrofossils. Hopefully we'll find some weed seeds, as they may help confirm that fertilisers were indeed used since the type of weeds found in a field can signal whether fertilisers or some other method was used,' says Axelsson.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Gothenburg. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Gothenburg. "New excavations in Sweden indicate use of fertilizers 5,000 years ago." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 April 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130426114853.htm>.
University of Gothenburg. (2013, April 26). New excavations in Sweden indicate use of fertilizers 5,000 years ago. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130426114853.htm
University of Gothenburg. "New excavations in Sweden indicate use of fertilizers 5,000 years ago." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/04/130426114853.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Fossils & Ruins News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre

AP (July 29, 2014) — Food scraps and other items left on the grounds by picnickers brings unwelcome visitors to the grounds of the world famous and popular Louvre Museum in Paris. (July 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
London's Famed 'Gherkin' Goes on Sale for £650 Mln

London's Famed 'Gherkin' Goes on Sale for £650 Mln

AFP (July 29, 2014) — London's "Gherkin" office tower, one of the landmarks on the British capital's skyline, went on sale for about £650 million ($1.1 billion, 820 million euros) on Tuesday after being placed into receivership. Duration: 00:36 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Asteroid's Timing Was 'Colossal Bad Luck' For The Dinosaurs

Newsy (July 28, 2014) — The asteroid that killed the dinosaurs struck at the worst time for them. A new study says that if it hit earlier or later, they might've survived. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tourists Disappointed to Find Rome Attractions Under Restoration

Tourists Disappointed to Find Rome Attractions Under Restoration

AFP (July 26, 2014) — Tourists visiting Italy at the peak of the summer season are disappointed to find some of Rome's most famous attractions being restored and offering limited access. Duration: 01:01 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



      Save/Print:
      Share:  

      Free Subscriptions


      Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

      Get Social & Mobile


      Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

      Have Feedback?


      Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
      Mobile iPhone Android Web
      Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
      Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
      Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins