Variability in 4th Millennium BC Livestock Management Practices in the Bronocice Region, Southeastern Poland


  • Marie-Lorraine Pipes Department of Anthropology, State University of New York at Buffalo
  • Janusz Kruk Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology, Polish Academy of Sciences
  • Sarunas Milisauskas Department of Anthropology, State University of New York at Buffalo



Neolithic, Funnel-Beaker, livestock management practices, Bronocice, X-ray fl uorescence, strontium, southeastern Poland


Livestock management systems are complex refl ections of economic practices. During the mid-fourth millennium BC in southeastern Poland distinct economic activities were revealed using portable x-ray fl uorescence (herein pXRF). Portable X-ray fl uorescence was used to measure elemental levels of strontium in the teeth of cattle, sheep and pig. Strontium is fi xed in dental enamel after a tooth has formed. By comparing strontium in teeth of different developmental ages it was possible to segregate individuals into local and non-local animals from three sites. The patterns observed reveal two levels of stock-herding in the Bronocice region. One pattern of low strontium diversity revealed the existence of unique localized management strategies for each species indicating they were managed separately. Another pattern of high strontium variability confi rmed the importation of non-local animals on an increasing scale over time revealing another aspect of Bronocice’s involvement in long distance trade.


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How to Cite

Pipes , M.-L., Kruk , J., & Milisauskas , S. (2017). Variability in 4th Millennium BC Livestock Management Practices in the Bronocice Region, Southeastern Poland . Sprawozdania Archeologiczne, 69, 55–69.