MS (Master of Science)
Date of Award
Committee Chair or Co-Chairs
Steven C. Wallace
Steven C. Wallace, Blaine W. Schubert, Jim, I. Mead
Clark’s Cave contains a large collection of late Pleistocene mammal material. In particular, it contains a sizable amount of Microtus spp. which can be valuable paleoclimate indicators. Identification techniques traditionally used to classify these species have been shown to be unreliable. Recent studies have shown that using geometric morphometric techniques on lower first molars can be more successful. By placing landmarks and running a discriminate analysis on new and previously collected material from the cave, significant differences in Microtus species proportions were found. Specifically, showing the deposit has a larger proportion of M. xanthognathus than previously reported; resulting in a subsequent drop in the number of M. pennsylvanicus and M. chrotorrhinus present. Moreover, previously unreported M. ochrogaster was determined to be an important component of the fauna. The results presented here show the importance of applying new techniques to previous studies.
Thesis - Open Access
Shelleman, Mark, "Using Geometric Morphometrics to Differentiate Lower First Molars of Microtus Species: A Review of the Clark’s Cave Bone Deposit, VA" (2015). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 2490. https://dc.etsu.edu/etd/2490