Archaeobotany sample, beech wood

Environmental Archaeology

The environmental archaeology team at MOLA analyses environmental material recovered from fieldwork to reconstruct and interpret past environments and economies. The team is made up of specialist archaeobotanists and zooarchaeologists, experts in examining botanical and faunal remains.

Our specialists provide comprehensive, expert environmental analysis in support of archaeological assessments and publication programmes.

We advise on the most efficient methods for environmental archaeology sampling on site, and employ a range of different techniques, including monolith tins, hand and power augers, and manual sampling.

We process the environmental soil samples we retrieve in our purpose-built facility. Our dedicated space allows us to handle the wet-sieving, flotation, drying and sorting of a large number of samples at any one given time.

Our archaeobotanists and zooarchaeologists identify and interpret both archaeological and modern plant and animal remains. We have particular expertise in fish, birds, and mammals; in the interpretation of tool and butchery marks and the identification of wood species of charred and waterlogged timbers and artefacts, including imported exotics. Our findings are reported to clients in a clear and comprehensible fashion. The team also completes palaeoecology and landscape studies in support of desk-based assessments.

Meet the Specialists

Our team of Specialists comprises internationally acclaimed experts in a range of topics, from osteoarchaeology, environmental archaeology and archaeological conservation to period- and type-specific finds specialisms. They not only ensure all the material we excavate is expertly analysed and published, they also undertake pioneering research.

zooarchaeologist working with animal bones