Wezmeh Cave
Basic information
Sample name: Wezmeh Cave

Reference: M. Mashkour, H. Monchot, E. Trinkaus, J.-L. Reyss, F. Biglari, S. Bailon, S. Heydari, and K. Abdi. 2009. Carnivores and their prey in the Wezmeh Cave (Kermanshah, Iran): a Late Pleistocene refuge in the Zagros. International Journal of Osteoarchaeology 19:678-694 [ER 3082]
Country: Iran

Coordinate: 34° 3' 20" N, 46° 38' 42" E
Basis of coordinate: stated in text
Geography comments: "about 12 km southeast of the town of Islamabad-e Gharb and 3.5 km northeast of the village of Tajar-e Akbar"
six U/Th dates span 11.4 +/- 0.5 to 70.5 + 6.8, - 6.4 ka, and "ca. 70 ka BP the use of the cave commenced... these occupations continued during several millenia, certainly after oxygen isotopic stage 5"
Climate and habitat
Lithology: siltstone
Taphonomic context: carnivore accumulation, cave
Habitat comments: "formed between geological layers of karstic limestone" with fossiliferous sediments derived from "sediments carried by water through cracks and cavities", organics, and "wind-blown silt and sand"
"The cave was most probably used more as a shelter for several carnivore species at different times, rather than as a long-term den" and there is an "absence of anthropic activity"
Life forms: carnivores, primates, rodents, ungulates, other small mammals, lizards, snakes, turtles
Sampling methods: quarry, screenwash, surface
Sample size: 1950
Years: 1999, 2001
Sampling comments: "the deposits had been partially emptied and scattered on the talus slope by looters, leaving a mix of Chalcolithic archaeological remains and Pleistocene fauna on the surface... The bones were therefore sorted on the basis of these preservational characteristics into Pleistocene and Holocene samples" and only the Pleistocene remains are described
"We also screened areas on the slope" and dug "an exploratory 3 x 3 m trench" and "six test pits... These excavations produced more bones and a handful of archaeological finds, mostly ceramics"
Sample: 3356
Contributor: John Alroy
Enterer: John Alroy
Created: 2019-08-26 16:07:10
Modified: 2019-08-26 16:07:10
Abundance distribution
29 species
3 singletons
total count 1950
standardised richness: not computable
Fisher's α: 4.831
geometric series k: 0.8014
Hurlbert's PIE: 0.8535
Shannon's H: 2.2864
Good's u: 0.9985
Crocuta crocuta43766 kg carnivore
Ursus arctos192156 kg frugivore-carnivore
Panthera leo16129 kg carnivore
Panthera pardus232 kg carnivore
Felidae indet.4
caracal, lynx, or jungle cat
Felis silvestris84.5 kg carnivore
Canis lupus17643 kg carnivore
Vulpes vulpes4925.3 kg carnivore-insectivore
Meles meles4211 kg invertivore-herbivore
Mustela putorius7656 g carnivore
Martes martes2 carnivore-frugivore
or possibly foina
Herpestes sp.5
Homo sp.1
Dicerorhinus sp.2
Equus ferus caballus1
"Equus caballus"
Equus sp.4
hemionus or asinus
Bos primigenius13
Sus scrofa9754 kg herbivore
Cervus elaphus59104 kg
Gazella sp.17
Ovis gmelini127
"Ovis orientalis"
Capra aegagrus3122 kg browser-grazer
Erinaceus sp.5
Hystrix indica2
Lepus capensis145
Testudo graeca46
Laudakia sp.1
Malpolon monspessulanus14
Vipera lebetina2