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Publication Type J
Authors Mudie, P. J., S. Greer, J. Brakel, J. H. Dickson, C. Schinkel, R. Peterson-Welsh, M. Stevens, N. J. Turner, M. Shadow and R. Washington
Title Forensic palynology and ethnobotany of Salicornia species (Chenopodiaceae) in northwest Canada and Alaska
Source Canadian Journal of Botany-Revue Canadienne De Botanique
Abstract Pollen grains from bodies of ancient people provide clues to their diet and domicile. To learn more about Kwady Dan Ts'inchi (Long Ago Person Found), who died on a British Columbia glacier 550 years ago, we studied the Chenopodiaceae pollen found in his stomach and robe. Environmental scanning electron microscopy was used to distinguish pollen of the native chenopod genera Atriplex, Chenopodium, Eurotia, Suaeda, and Salicornia (here including Sarcocornia). All chenopod pollen grains in one stomach sample were from Salicornia (Tourn.) L. (glasswort), which grows only in saline soils and has been used for food and medicine. Elders from the Champagne and Aishihik, Tagish, Gwitch'in, and Tlingit First Nations report their ethnobotanical and historical knowledge about inland and coastal Salicornia species. There is no common use for the small inland annual glasswort, Salicornia rubra A. Nelson, although other species were used for grain further south; however, Pacific Northwest coastal people have eaten the succulent perennial glasswort, Salicornia perennis Miller, since at least the 1880s. Pollen grains of this perennial salt marsh species are most similar to the chenopod pollen grains in the stomach of Kwady Dan Ts'inchi and suggest the ancient man's last meal came from the coast rather than from inland.
Publication Date Jan
Year Published 2005
Volume 83
Issue 1
Beginning Page 111-123
Unique Article Identifier ISI:000227336700013
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