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The omnivorous Tyrolean Iceman: colon contents (meat, cereals, pollen, moss and whipworm) and stable isotope analyses

Dickson, J.H., Oeggl, K., Holden, T.G., Handley, L.L., O'Connell, T.C., and Preston, T. (2000) The omnivorous Tyrolean Iceman: colon contents (meat, cereals, pollen, moss and whipworm) and stable isotope analyses. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences, 355 (1404). pp. 1843-1849. ISSN 0962-8436 (doi:10.1098/rstb.2000.0739)

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Publisher's URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2000.0739

Abstract

The contents of the colon of the Tyrolean Iceman who lived Ga. 5300 years ago include muscle fibres, cereal remains, a diversity of pollen, and most notably that of the hop hornbeam (Ostrya carpinifolia) retaining cellular contents, as well as a moss leaf (Neckera complanata) and eggs of the parasitic whipworm (Trichuris trichiura). Based almost solely on stable isotope analyses and ignoring the work on the colon contents, two recently published papers on the Iceman's diet draw ill- founded conclusions about vegetarianism and even veganism. Neither the pollen nor the moss is likely to have been deliberately consumed as food by the Iceman. All the available evidence concerning the Iceman's broad-based diet is reviewed and the significance of the colon contents for matters other than assessment of food intake is outlined.

Item Type:Article
Status:Published
Refereed:Yes
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Preston, Prof Thomas
Authors: Dickson, J.H., Oeggl, K., Holden, T.G., Handley, L.L., O'Connell, T.C., and Preston, T.
Subjects:Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
College/School:College of Science and Engineering > Scottish Universities Environmental Research Centre
Journal Name:Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B: Biological Sciences
Publisher:The Royal Society
ISSN:0962-8436
ISSN (Online):1471-2970
Copyright Holders:©2003 The Royal Society
First Published:First published in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London Series B-Biological Sciences e55(1404):1843-1849
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

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