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In a recent study, an international team of researchers analyzed fish bones excavated from the Early Neolithic Jiahu site in Henan Province, China. By comparing the body-length Sex dating in Carp lake and species-composition ratios of the bones with findings from East Asian sites with present aquaculture, the researchers provide evidence of managed carp aquaculture at Jiahu dating back to BC. Despite the growing importance of farmed fish for economies and diets around the world, the origins of aquaculture remain unknown.
The Shijing, the oldest surviving collection of ancient Chinese poetry, mentions carp being reared in a pond circa BC, and historical records describe carp being raised in artificial ponds and paddy fields in East Asia by the first millennium BC. Jiahu, located in Henan, China, is known for the early domestication of rice and pigs, as well the early development of fermented beverages, bone flutes, and possibly writing. This history of early development, combined with archaeological findings suggesting the presence of large expanses of water, made Jiahu an ideal location for the present study.
Researchers measured pharyngeal carp teeth extracted from fish remains in Jiahu corresponding with three separate Neolithic periods, and compared the body-length distributions with findings from other sites and a modern sample of carp raised in Matsukawa Village, Japan.
While the remains from the first two periods revealed unimodal patterns of body-length distribution peaking at or near carp maturity, the remains of Period III BC displayed bimodal distribution, with one peak at mm corresponding with sexual maturity, and another at mm. This bimodal distribution identified by researchers was similar to that documented at the Iron Age Asahi site in Japan circa BC -- ADand is indicative of a managed system of carp aquaculture that until now was unidentified in Neolithic China.
At the same time, some carp were kept alive and released into confined, human regulated waters where they spawned naturally and their offspring grew by feeding on available resources.
In autumn, water was drained from the ponds and the fish harvested, with body-length distributions showing two peaks due to the presence of both immature and mature individuals. The size of the fish wasn't the only piece of evidence researchers found supporting carp management at Jiahu. This high proportion of less-prevalent fish indicates a cultural preference for common carp and the presence of aquaculture sophisticated enough to provide it.
Based on the analysis of carp Sex dating in Carp lake from Jiahu and data from studies, researchers hypothesize three stages of aquaculture development in prehistoric East Asia. In Stage 1, humans fished the marshy areas where carp gather during spawning season. In Stage 2, these marshy ecotones were managed by digging channels and controlling water levels and circulation so the carp could spawn and the juveniles later harvested. Stage 3 involved constant human management, including using spawning beds to control reproduction and fish ponds or paddy fields to manage adolescents.
Although rice paddy fields have not yet been identified at Jiahu, the evolution of carp aquaculture with wet rice agriculture seems to be connected, and the coevolution of the two is an important topic for future research. Note: Content may be edited for style and length. Science News.
Carp farming goes way back in Early Neolithic Jiahu Jiahu, located in Henan, China, is known for the early domestication of rice and pigs, as well the early development of fermented beverages, bone flutes, and possibly writing. Common carp aquaculture in Neolithic China dates back 8, years. ScienceDaily, 16 September Carp aquaculture in Neolithic China dating back 8, years. Retrieved July 8, from www. A statistical model allowed the age distribution of the Due to continuous growth, ecologically, economically and socially sustainable sites for aquaculture are already in use, New DNA technology gives ificant information on the bones buried in water.
The DNA However, farmers in the United States who wish to capitalize on this momentum face regulatory ScienceDaily shares links with sites in the TrendMD network and earns revenue from third-party advertisers, where indicated. Print Share. It's in the Father's Genes.
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