Lecture – 8
March 4, 2014
Diet is important to females due reproductive and for males its important family.
Methods for dietary reconstruction:
– well developed crests because leaf is hard to digest.
Dentin is the softest part of the teeth and the enamel is the hardest part of the teeth.AS the teeth
wears the crests become sharper but eventually cusps become more flat – will be hard to process
Leaf eaters tend to have larger bodies
Kays Threshold – Over 500 g – Leaf eaters and under 500g – Insects eaters
Tend to be small animals with sharp cusps.
P4 & M1 - Carnassils with large canines
Low rounded molar cusps RobustAustralopithecus -A.boisei
They are not well designed eating for leaves or meat.
But they also were not peeling fruits.
So there are no dental patterns to determine their diet.
Human like teeth.
Reasonably thick enamel.
Pluses and minuses of Morphology
Liem’s Paradox – Species that eat diet that’s different from what their teeth were designed.
Dental Micowear Analysis - Sample small area – you can a
Leaf eaters – tend to have lots of scratches
Hard objects – tend to have pits.
Fruit eaters tend to have scratc