Journal article

Dating correlated microlayers in oxalate accretions from rock art shelters: New archives of paleoenvironments and human activity

Helen Green, Andrew Gleadow, Vladimir A Levchenko, Damien Finch, Cecilia Myers, Jenna McGovern, Pauline Heaney, Robyn Pickering



Oxalate-rich mineral accretions, often found in rock shelters around the world, offer important opportunities for radiocarbon dating of associated rock art. Here, sample characterization and chemical pretreatment techniques are used to characterize the accretions, prescreen for evidence of open-system behavior, and address potential contamination. The results provide stratigraphically consistent sequences of radiocarbon dates in millimeter-scale laminated accretions, demonstrating their reliability for dating rock art, particularly symbolic markings commonly engraved into these relatively soft deposits. The age sequences are also consistent with correlations between distinctive patterns in t..

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Awarded by Australian Research Council

Funding Acknowledgements

This research was funded by an Australian Research Council Linkage Projects LP130100501 and LP170100155 with Rock Art Australia as a funding partner and supported in kind by the Dunkeld Pastoral Co. Pty. Ltd., Western Australia (WA) Department of Biodiversity, Attractions and Conservation (DBAC), and Balanggarra Aboriginal Corporation especially for fieldwork. H.G. is supported by a fellowship in Rock Art Dating awarded by The Ian Potter Foundation to Rock Art Australia.