North European sea fishing origins studied

Apr 12, 2006

The study of fish bones, once considered an esoteric branch of archaeology, is helping British scientists study the Middle Ages' fishing trade.

The research will spotlight the earliest development of Europe's sea fisheries and, given the continuous expansion of sea fishing since the Middle Ages, the ultimate origin of the current fishing crisis.

The 3-year project is supported by the Census of Marine Life, a network of researchers in more than 70 nations engaged in a 10-year study of the diversity, distribution and abundance of oceanic marine life.

It builds on research by the team that discovered extensive sea fishing began in Europe 1,000 years ago. A major shift from freshwater to sea fishing was believed due to a combination of climate, population growth and religion.

Archeologist James Barrett of the University of York, which is coordinating the project, has pinpointed the time between 950 A.D. and 1050 A.D. as the period during which the fishing revolution occurred.

By studying fish bones from archaeological sites in Belgium, Denmark, Germany and Poland, the researchers hope to establish what long-term affect the rapid switch to intensive sea fisheries had on medieval trading patterns.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Smartphone app used by experimenters to learn more about aspects of morality

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Studying how marshes respond to sea-level rise

Sep 10, 2014

At the Plum Island Sound estuary in northeastern Massachusetts, the marsh floods like clockwork. At high tide, you can pass over the mudflats into the grass in a boat. At low tide, the ocean waters recede, ...

Great Barrier Reef dredge dumping plan could be shelved

Sep 02, 2014

An India-backed mining consortium could shelve controversial plans to dump dredging waste in the Great Barrier Reef, with alternative sites on land being considered amid growing environmental concerns, Australia ...

Recommended for you

Math journal puts Rauzy fractcal image on the cover

Sep 12, 2014

An image created by geometer Edmund Harriss made the cover of the mathematics journal Notices, published by the American Mathematical Society. The image, created in collaboration with Bill Casselman, appear ...

Religious acceptance of homosexuals on the rise

Sep 12, 2014

The willingness of religious congregations to welcome homosexuals as members—and place them in leadership positions—is on the rise, according to a new Duke University study.

Ancient Greek tomb dig finds marble statues

Sep 11, 2014

Archaeologists slowly digging through a huge 2,300-year-old tomb in northern Greece have uncovered two life-sized marble female statues flanking the entrance to one of three underground chambers.

User comments : 0