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Dr Jillian Garvey Tracey Banivanua Mar Research Fellow, Archaeology

I am an Australian Research Council DECRA Fellow investigating human occupation and use of the landscape in the late Quaternary of the central Murray River valley, in northwest Victoria. This long-term landscape archaeology project is based at Neds Corner Station (owned by Trust for Nature) and the adjacent Murray-Sunset (Yanga Nowie) National Park. This project seeks to address the gaps in understanding of when Indigenous people first inhabited this region. The aim is to investigate long-term human behavioural response and adaptive strategies to environmental change during the late Pleistocene era, a time of significant climatic variability. It is further hoped that this study will provide important information that will assist in the development of cultural heritage management plans for the region, help to formally register archaeological sites and provide information to the First People of the Millewa-Mallee Traditional Owner groups, on whose country this project is based.

I have a particular research focus on Zooarchaeology, with formal qualifications in both Archaeology and Zoology. I have been involved in a variety of Archaeology research projects on late Quaternary Australia including: southwest Tasmania; Lake Mungo, NSW; Cuddie Springs, NSW, and Lancefield, VIC. I have also worked on faunal assemblages from Middle Palaeolithic China. I have integrated my zoological background into my research on modern Australian vertebrates and invertebrates by conducting experiments including: fatty acid nutritional analyses; economic utility or anatomy experiments, and butchery and cooking experiments. These modern experiments are combined with evidence from the ethnographic record to provide an interpretation of patterns in the archaeological record. I also have extensive teaching experience, having lectured and tutored a variety of Archaeology and Biology subjects since 1999. With a PhD in Palaeontology, I am also interested in studying natural faunal assemblages, and what this can infer about past palaeoenvironments and palaeoecology. In particular I am interested in the causes behind the extinction of Australia's megafauna during the late Pleistocene era.


selected publications