Title

Microscopic Epidermal Identification of Some Common Desertic Plants

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

1994

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Abstract

Wildlife ecologists have extensively used the identification of epidermal fragments recovered from digestive tracts and feces to determine the diet of various animals. Archaeologists, however, generally have not used this technique to identify botanical remains recovered from archaeological contexts. This article points out the accessibility of literature needed to conduct microscopic epidermal identification, reviews the methods and techniques, provides distinctions of such identifications on reference samples of some common desertic plants (yucca, agave, prickly pear, sotol, onion, and grass), and compares these reference samples to epidermal fragments from archaeological paleofeces.

DOI

10.2190/ERV2-R2WF-HDLW-50J2

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