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Broken Canines from Alaskan Cave Deposits: Re-Evaluating Evidence for Domesticated Dog and Early Humans in Alaska

E. James Dixon and George S. Smith
American Antiquity
Vol. 51, No. 2 (Apr., 1986), pp. 341-351
DOI: 10.2307/279946
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/279946
Page Count: 11
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Broken Canines from Alaskan Cave Deposits: Re-Evaluating Evidence for Domesticated Dog and Early Humans in Alaska
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Abstract

Broken canines from two caves on the Porcupine River, Alaska are analyzed with respect to size, development, morphology, breakage pattern, and stratigraphic placement. These analyses indicate that they are deciduous bear teeth exfoliated in these caves through noncultural processes associated with dental development. Similarity of these teeth to the canines recovered from various stratigraphic levels at Trail Creek Caves 2 and 9, on the Seward Peninsula, Alaska (Larsen 1968:58), indicates that the Trail Creek specimens (including specimens from levels dating to the late Pleistocene) are also naturally exfoliated bear teeth and not dog canines (Canis familiaris) broken out by human beings, as originally suggested.

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