An investigation on the climate and ecology of the southeast region of the Caspian Sea in the first millennium AD based on archaeological data

Authors

1 E. Taghvaye Salimi *1,2, K. Soleimani1, M. Habibnejad Roshan1, K. Sabetraftar3,4 1- Department of Watershed Management, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Mazandaran, Sari, Iran. 2- Department of Forestry, Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Guilan, Somehsara, Iran. 3- Department of Environmental Science , Faculty of Natural Resources, University of Guilan, Somehsara, Iran. 4- School of Resources, Environment & Society(SRES), The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT 0200, Australia *Corresponding author?s E-mail: edristaghvaei@yahoo.com

2 *1, 2, K. Sabetraftar3, 4,

Abstract

The vegetation covering of a region has a direct correlation with climate. So if data is available for vegetation cover, the second variable (climate) can be easily predicted and in reverse. The dominant species in a region are indication of its climatic conditions and vice versa. Accordingly, this is of significance in the science of historical botany. Fortunately, from the first millennium AD, and during the rule of Parthian and Sassanian era, documents and archeological evidence is considerable indicating climatic and habitat conditions as well as biodiversity in the region. However, this evidence has not been used for biological sciences and ecology. Through the discovery of 2746 clay tablet writings in the ancient area of Nisa which were the actual delivery receipts of stock to a storage house, researchers are now able to study data regarding socio-economic conditions that prevailed in the Partian society and agricultural activities which took place in northern Khorasan during the first and second century BC. Moreover, Rhyton (golden and silver vessels) discovered in Sassanid era, in the first millennium AD were totally important based on animal geography. After identifying the dominant agricultural species contained on the clay tablets and the mammalian single indicator that were depicted on Rhyton, our investigation team was able to determine the appropriate climatic conditions and individual habitat circumstances for these species. Consequently, this evidence accomplished that there is no noticeable change based on the development of the dominant species of fauna and flora in the southeast of the Caspian Sea in the first millennium AD.

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