On the shore of a fluctuating lake: Environmental evidence from Ohalo II (19,500 B.P.)

Dani Nadel*, Alexander Tsatskin, Miriam Belmaker, Elisabetta Boaretto, Mordechai Kislev, Henk Mienis, Rivka Rabinovich, Orit Simchoni, Tal Simmons, Ehud Weiss, Irit Zohar

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The aim of this paper is to provide a high-resolution environmental reconstruction of the Sea of Galilee basin during a very short spell of time at the end of the Upper Pleistocene. We present a multidisciplinary study of sediments and archaeological remains exposed at the submerged and well-preserved Ohalo II prehistoric site. The Ohalo II camp includes in situ brush hut floors, hearths, and other installations, all radiometrically dated to 19,500 B.P. The remains include large quantities of charred material and animal bones. The reconstruction is based on a geoarchaeological study, accompanied by analyses of a wide variety of trees, grasses, mammals, birds, fish, and mollusc remains. The results show that the range of plant and animal species (ca. 240) is not different from that encountered today in the valley and the surrounding slopes. Water level fluctuations were the most dramatic environmental events, probably induced by climatic changes and tectonic activities at the inlet/outlet of the lake.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)207-223
Number of pages17
JournalIsrael Journal of Earth Sciences
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 2004


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