'Ubeidiya Formation site II-23 (Pleistocene of Israel)

Also known as Oubeidiyeh

Where: Israel (32.7° N, 35.6° E: paleocoordinates 32.6° N, 35.5° E)

• coordinate based on nearby landmark

When: 'Ubeidiya Formation, Pleistocene (2.6 - 0.0 Ma)

• Site has been subject to much tectonic movement - archaeological levels are almost vertical in the section. There have been four major depositional cycles, the lowest is of archaeological interest and is termed the Fi (lower Fluviatile). This limnic level is 30m thick. Site dated to between 1.4-1.0Ma, but is thought (on faunal grounds) to be at the older end of this range.

Environment/lithology: fluvial-deltaic; lenticular, silty claystone

• The site is in the northern end of the Red Sea-East African Rift. 'The Formation represents a tectonic anticline with undulations and faults. Sediments are tilted up to 80 degrees and are exposed over an areas of approximately 1km2'. Local environment - 'the delta of an ephemeral stream debouched into a freshwater lake.'
• 'The Fi cycle consists of clay, clastic conglomerates, chalky marls, silt and basaltic sands, often altered by paleosols.' Site II-23 is a paleosol, comprising a silty clay lens, c.20 cm thick.

Size class: macrofossils

Preservation: anthropogenic, bone collector, coprolite

Collection methods: bulk,

• Level II-23 was excavated between 1961-63. 105 m2 were exposed. 33 artifacts were recovered and 2 cutmarked bones, plus 12 specimens with conical impacts which could be hominid, carnivore or trampling damage. The cutmarks were found on a cervid distal humerus and a horse mandible fragment.

Primary reference: S. Gaudzinski. 2004. Subsistence patterns of Early Pleistocene hominids in the Levant - taphonomic evidence from the 'Ubeidiya Formation. Journal of Archaeological Science 31:65-75 [A. Turner/H. O'Regan/H. O'Regan]more details

Purpose of describing collection: archaeological analysis

PaleoDB collection 37024: authorized by Alan Turner, entered by Hannah O'Regan on 24.02.2004, edited by Mark Uhen

Creative Commons license: CC BY (attribution)

Taxonomic list

• 22 hyaena coprolites (i.d. as Crocuta crocuta) were also present, although they are of differing sizes (adult vs. juvenile?). Possibly part of the II-23 assemblage comes from an hyaena den, although no bones of the animals themselves were found.
 Primates - Hominidae
Homo sp. Linnaeus 1758 human
MNI = 1
 Rodentia - Hystricidae
Hystrix indica porcupine
MNI = 1
 Lagomorpha - Leporidae
Hypolagus brachygnathus rabbit
MNI = 2
 Perissodactyla - Rhinocerotidae
Stephanorhinus etruscus Falconer 1868 rhinoceros
Stephanorhinus e. etruscus. MNI = 1
 Perissodactyla - Equidae
Equus cf. altidens horse
MNI = 4
Equus caballus Linnaeus 1758 horse
MNI = 1
 Carnivora - Ursidae
Ursus etruscus Cuvier 1823 bear
MNI = 1
 Carnivora - Mustelidae
Lutra sp. Brisson 1762 otter
MNI = 1
Vormela cf. peregusna Güldenstädt 1770 marbled polecat
MNI = 1
 Carnivora - Canidae
Vulpes sp. Frisch 1775 fox
MNI = 1
Canis etruscus Forsyth Major 1877 canine
MNI = 2
 Carnivora - Felidae
Megantereon cf. whitei Broom 1937 cat
MNI = 1
Lynx sp. Kerr 1792 lynx
MNI = 1
Felis sp. Linnaeus 1758 cat
MNI = 1
 Proboscidea - Elephantidae
Mammuthus meridionalis Nesti 1825 mammoth
MNI = 1
 Artiodactyla - Suidae
Sus strozzii pig
MNI = 1
 Artiodactyla - Hippopotamidae
Hippopotamus sp. Linnaeus 1758 hippo
MNI = 3
Hippopotamus behemoth Faure 1986 hippo
Hippopotamus gorgops Dietrich 1928 hippo
MNI = 1
 Artiodactyla - Bovidae
Pelorovis sp. Reck 1928 antelope
MNI = 1
Gazella sp. Blaineville 1816 gazelle
MNI = 2
cf. Hippotragus sp. Sundevall 1845 antelope
Hippotragini gen. et. sp. indet. (cf. Hippotragus sp.). MNI = 1
 Artiodactyla - Cervidae
Cervidae indet. Gray 1821 deer
MNI = 6