News and Events

Latest Publications

Chan B., Viner S., Parker Pearson M., Albarella U & Ixer, R. 2016. Resourcing Stonehenge: patterns of human, animal and goods mobility in the late Neolithic. In J.Leary & T.Kador (eds.). Moving on in Neolithic Studies: Understanding mobile lives, pp.28-44. Oxford: Oxbow Books.

Grau-Sologestoa, I., Albarella, U. and Quirós Castillo, J.A. 2016. Urban medieval and post-medieval zooarchaeology in the Basque Country: Meat supply and consumption. Quaternary International 399, pp. 1-12.

Grau-Sologestoa, I, Albarella, U. & Quiros Castillo J.A. 2016. Urban medieval and post-medieval zooarchaeology in the Basque Country: Meat supply and consumption. Quaternary International 399, 1-12.

Jervis, B., Broderick, L., and Grau-Sologestoa, I. (Eds) 2016. Everyday Life in Medieval Europe: Environmental and Artefact Based Approaches to Dwelling in Town and Country, Brepols.

You can keep up to date with our latest news via Facebook and Twitter!

Book reviews

Albarella, U. 2016. Review of the book “The Power of Feasts: From Prehistory to the Present”. European Journal of Archaeology 19(1), 153-7.

Albarella, U. 2015. Review of the book “Animals in Saxon & Scandinavian England. Backbones of Economy and Society”. Medieval Archaeology, 59:1, 375.

ZAP seminars

Thanks to a small grant received from the AHRC (Research Training Support Grants) the Sheffield zooarchaeology group is happy to announce a forthcoming seminar:

Department of Archaeology University of Sheffield, 24th of May
Dr. Ana Belen Marin Arroyo (currently Scholar at the McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research at the University of Cambridge and also Research Associate to Darwin College). “Human Subsistence and Climate during The Middle to Upper Palaeolithic transition in Northern Iberia”.


Post-Medieval Archaeology Congress: 50 years of the Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology, Sheffield, 1-3 April 2016.

The Zooarchaeology Lab did not want to miss the opportunity to present some of the recent research carried out by some of its members on Late and Post-Medieval faunal remains.

Idoia Grau-Sologestoa and Umberto Albarella gave the presentation entitled “Livestock improvement in late and post-medieval England”.

Idoia Grau-Sologestoa, Ged Poland and Umberto Albarella presented the poster entitled “Duck and goosed exploitation in late and post-medieval England”.

Animals: Cultural Identifiers in Ancient Societies? Conference, Munich, Germany, April 2016

Umberto Albarella presented the paper“Urban pigs: cultural and dietary choice in Roman and early medieval Rome”

AEA Spring Conference, Kirkwall, 1st-2nd April 2016

The AEA Spring Conference 2016 took place in Kirkwall, Orkney, on the 1st and 2nd April. The papers focussed on the topic of ‘isolation and connectivity’ in island archaeology, with a geographical range spanning from the Red Sea to Greenland.
Veronica Aniceti and Mauro Rizzetto had two posters on their PhD projects, which deal with faunal assemblages from Sicily and Britain respectively. Lua Valenzuela-Suau, former visiting researcher in our department, presented the preliminary results of her PhD on the zooarchaeology of the Bronze Age in the Balearic Islands. Laura Llorente-Rodríguez, also a former visiting researcher in Sheffield and now Marie Curie fellow in York, presented a study on fish trade in early modern Iberia using stable isotope analysis.

The Roman Archaeology Conference 2016, 16th-19th March 2016

Silvia Valenzuela-Lamas contributed to the session dedicated to Lusitania with a paper on Roman diet and animal husbandry on that region, while Mauro Rizzetto and Veronica Aniceti presented a poster on the faunal evidence from Roman Castleford (West Yorkshire).

Apart from the many interesting sessions, the conference was also an opportunity to meet with many current and former researchers from our department.

Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG) conference, Bradford, December 2015

Umberto Albarella was a discussant for the session “Humming with the cross fire and short on cover…? Revisiting and reflecting on Environmental Archaeology: Meaning and Purpose”

Seminars and lectures

University of Sheffield , Dept of Archaeology Staff Seminar series, February 2016

Umberto Albarella presented the paper: "Animal offerings at Demeter sanctuaries: a case study from Italy in its Mediterranean context"

Universidad del País Vasco – Euskal Herriko Unibertsitatea, Spain, April 2016

Idoia Grau Sologestoa was invited to present the lecture “Cambio vs. continuidad. La ganadería en Inglaterra y en el País Vasco entre finales de la Edad Media y principios de la Edad Moderna”, 

Grants Won!

Umberto Albarella has received two University of Sheffield Visiting Postdoctoral Bursaries to invite Maaike Groot (Mobility and management of cattle in Iron Age and Roman Netherlands) and Colin Duval (Reshaping the Roman Empire: the contribution of zooarchaeology) to Sheffield to work on their Marie Curie fellowship applications.

Umberto Albarella has been awarded a University of Sheffield OnCampus Placement for the project “Digitisation of the photographic archive associated with the animal bone reference collection held by the Tony Legge Zooarchaeology Laboratory”. MSc Osteoarchaeology student Dani Buffa has been appointed to work on this project.

Erasmus Research Visitors

We currently have two more visitors on the Erasmus Practice Programme from Spain in the Lab: Lua and Abel

Lua Valenzuela-Suau is with us for two months, working on her PhD project "The Bronze Age in Mallorca. A perspective from zooarchaeology". She has come to Sheffield to gain experience of preparing specimens for the reference collection, and to improve her knowledge of statistics.

Abel Gallego Valle is with us for three months. He is currently a student at the Autonomous University of Barcelona working on his Masters Thesis, which is related to dental microwear in Roman assemblages from l'Alt Empordà (Girona, Spain). He has come to Sheffield to improve his data analysis skills, particularly around quantification, and spend some time getting to know the team.

Recent guest lectures

February 2016
Silvia Valenzuela presented the lecture "Mouvement de troupeaux en Europe du Néolithique à l'époque romaine: Approches ostéologiques et isotopiques en Angleterre, en Catalogne et en France" at the Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, Paris.

March 2016
Silvia Valenzuela was invited to contribute to the Sheffield Tuesday Lecture Seminar Series with the paper: "How did the Romans improve animal husbandry production? Evidence from ancient Western Europe using stable isotopes and faunal remains"

Forthcoming Publications

Grau-Sologestoa, I. forthcoming. Socio-economic status and religious identity in medieval Iberia: the zooarchaeological evidence. Environmental Archaeology.

Mik Lisowski has recently finished his 2 year grant project researching a Neolithic site in Kopydłowo, Poland, in corroboration with Arkadiusz Marciniak, Marta Bartkowieka (Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań, Poland) and Iwona Sobkowiak-Tabaka (Polish Academy of Sciences). The monograph of the site has been already published and soon will be available on-line. Project's website:

Registration is now open for our 2016 short courses!

This year we will be running two short courses in September:
1. Understanding Zooarchaeology I (12th-14th September)
2. Human and Animal Remains: a comparative approach (15th-16th September)

For further information and to make bookings please see our short course web pages:

Publications by members of the lab in 2015

Aniceti, V. 2015. I resti animali. In Diana Umbronensis a Scoglietto. Santuario, territorio e cultura materiale (100 a.C. - 550 d.C.), A. Sebastiani, E. Chirico, M. Colombini and M. Cygielman (eds). Oxford: British Archaeological Reports.

Aniceti, V. 2015. I resti umani individuati nella cisterna a Scoglietto. Analisi preliminari. In Diana Umbronensis a Scoglietto. Santuario, territorio e cultura materiale (100 a.C. - 500 d.C.), A. Sebastiani, E. Chirico, M. Colombini and M. Cygielman (eds). Oxford: British Archaeological Reports.

Corbino C.A., 2015. Beccherie fiorentine: pratiche di macellazione e consumi alimentari nel Rinascimento, in V. d'Aquino, G. Guarducci, S. Nencetti and S. Valentini (eds.), Archeologia a Firenze: Città e Territorio, 12-13 Aprile 2013. Archeopress Archaeology, pp. 379-384.

Affuso A and Corbino, C.A. Vecchi e nuovi rinvenimenti nel Metapontino meridionale: metodi e risultati dell’archeologia preventiva, Studi per l’Ecologia del Quaternario, Firenze.

Craig, O. E., Shillito, L-M., Albarella, U., Viner-Daniels, S., Chan, B., Cleal, R., Ixer, R., Jay, M., Marshall, P., Simmons, E., Wright, E. and Parker Pearson, M. 2015. Feeding Stonehenge: cuisine and consumption at the Late Neolithic site of Durrington Walls. Antiquity, 89(347), pp.1096–1109. Available at:

Grau-Sologestoa, I. 2015. The Zooarchaeology of Medieval Alava in its Iberian Context, BAR International Series. Expected date of publication: December 2015.

Grau-Sologestoa, I. 2015. Livestock management in Spain from Roman to post-medieval times: a biometrical analysis of cattle, sheep/goat and pig. Journal of Archaeological Science 54, 123-34.

Jervis, B., Broderick, L., and Grau-Sologestoa, I. (Eds), in press, Everyday Life in Medieval Europe: Environmental and Artefact Based Approaches to Dwelling in Town and Country, Brepols.

Lisowski, M. 2015. Taphonomy of Animal Bones from the Unetice settlement at Bruszczewo 5, Kościan District. in J. Czebreszuk, J. Muller, M. Jaeger, J. Kneisel (ed.), Bruszczewo IV, Natural resources and Economic Activities of the Bronze Age people (Studien zur Archäologie in Ostmitteleuropa. Studia nad Pradziejami Europy Środkowej. Volume 14). Poznań, Wydawnictwo Naukowe UAM, 189-220. Online access:

Quirós Castillo, J.A., García Collado, M.I., Ricci, P., Grau-Sologestoa, I. and Lubritto, C. 2015. A Bayesian approach to reconstruct occupational sequence of Northern Iberia Medieval villages. 1st International Conference on Metrology for Archaeology, Benevento, pp. 259-264.

Valenzuela, S. Jiménez-Manchón, S., Evans, J., López, D., Jornet, R., Albarella U. 2015: Analysis of seasonal mobility of sheep in Iron Age Catalonia (north-eastern Spain) based on strontium and oxygen isotope analysis from tooth enamel: First results, Journal of Archaeological Science Reports, doi:10.1016/j.jasrep.2015.08.042

Wright, E. & Viner-Daniels, S., 2015. Geographical variation in the size and shape of the European aurochs (Bos primigenius). Journal of Archaeological Science, 54, pp.8–22. Available at:

November 2015 - Conferences

AIAZ Conference, Lecce 11th-14th November 2015

The conference of the Italian association of zooarchaeology (AIAZ) took place at the University of Salento in Lecce. Most of the contributions were organised chronologically from the Palaeolithic to the medieval period; two thematic sessions dealt with the role of dogs and wolves in past communities and with the exploitation of birds in antiquity, while the last day was dedicated to methodological issues in zooarchaeology.

The conference has seen a good participation from our team members. Lenny Salvagno presented the results of her biometrical approach to the distinction between sheep and goat bones; Chiara Corbino proposed a methodology for the recording and analysis of chicken remains; Ornella Prato discussed the recovery of a horse skeleton from a hypogeum structure in Tarquinia; Claudia Minniti (former Marie Curie fellow in Sheffield) and among the organisers of the conference, presented a study on the biometry of sheep during the Italian Iron Age.

The four-day conference also included a tour of the radiocarbon dating laboratory CEDAD and a visit to the exhibition on worked bone, ivory and antler objects held at the archaeological museum of the university.

Photo 12

Association of Environmental Archaeology Conference, York (UK).

Silvia Valenzuela presented the poster: "Animal Husbandry in Europe: Iron Age vs. Roman times".

October 2015 - Invited talk

Silvia Valenzuela was invited to give the paper: "How Romans improved the productivity of animal husbandry: evidence from ancient Western Europe using stable isotopes and faunal remains" at the Roman Discussion Forum, University of Oxford.

September 2015 - New PhD Students!

We are excited to have three new PhD students joining us this autumn:

Mauro Rizzetto - Developments in the exploitation of animal resources between the late Roman period and the early Middle Ages: a comparative study of the evidence from Britain and the lower Rhine region. This project will be supervised by Umberto Albarella.

Sofia Tecce - The origins and evolution of pig domestication in Italy: a regional and diachronic study of husbandry practices. This project will be supervised by Umberto Albarella.

Tamsyn Fraser - Livestock and landscape: changing husbandry, livestock improvement and landscape enclosure in late and post-medieval England. This project will be supervised by Umberto Albarella, alongside Andrew Lowerre and Polydora Baker (Historic England).

September 2015 - Public Event

Sheffield Department of Archaeology Open Day

Ged Poland and Silvia Valenzuela represented the lab at our departmental Open Day by giving a talk and organising some bone activities for the public.

September 2015 - Conferences

Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists (EAA) in Glasgow, September 2015.

The Sheffield Zooarchaeology Lab was well represented at the EAA conference, with Idoia Grau, Chiara Corbino, Silvia Valenzuela and Ged Poland all attending.

Idoia Grau  and Chiara Corbino co-organised the session: "Global markets and local manufacturing: wool production and trade"

Idoia Grau also co-organised the session "Don’t put your eggs in one basket: Multi-disciplinary approaches to the study of poultry exploitation in Europe" and also presented a paper entitled "Large-scale ovine horizontal transhumance in Spain: its modern social significance and its role in the archaeological research agenda".

Silvia Valenzuela presented the paper: "Moving herds in Iron Age Europe: zooarchaeological and isotopic evidence from Britain and Spain"

June 2015 - Conferences

Encontro “O mundo animal na romanização da Península Ibérica”, Laboratório de Arqueociências – Direção Geral do Património Cultural Museu Nacional de História Natural e da Ciência, 26th-27th June, Lisbon (Portugal).

Silvia Valenzuela presented the paper: "Vacas del Este, Vacas del Oeste. Diversidad de morfotipos de ganado vacuno en la Península Ibérica y cambios desiguales en el periodo romano".

Meeting of the Archaeozoology of Southwest Asia and Adjacent Areas (ASWA) working group of the International Council for Archaeozoology (ICAZ), Groningen, June 10th-14th.

Chiara Corbino presented the paper: "The elite and the villagers in the 14th century AD: Zooarchaeological analysis at Tell Hesban (Jordan)"

Angelos Hadjikoumis presented the paper: "A multi-site approach to sheep and goat management in prehistoric Cyprus: Synthesis and new insights" (With Jean-Denis Vigne)

May 2015 - Public events

Sheffield Woodland Heritage Festival

Ged Poland, Mauro Rizzetto and Silvia Valenzuela were all involved in running outreach activities at this event in May. They did a talk about zooarchaeology and had lots of bones for the public to explore.

May 2015 - Conferences

The Environmental Archaeology of European Cities (CEAEC), Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences, Brussels (Belgium)27th-29th May

Silvia Valenzuela presented the paper: "Town and country sites in Roman Lusitania: can they be zooarchaeologically distinguished?" (with Cleia Detry, Uniarq, Lisbon).

Idoia Grau presented the poster "The zooarchaeology of late and post-medieval Basque towns"

III Reunió Oikos de Bioarqueologia, 15th-16th May, Barcelona (Spain)

Silvia Valenzuela presented the paper: "Complexitat social i pràctiques ramaderes en un ecosistema canviant: el cas d’Althiburos (Tunísia), entre el bronze final i època romana (s. IX aC- s. V dC)"

April 2015 - Conferences

Trans-Saharans 2015: Mobile Technologies, Leicester (UK).

Silvia Valenzuela presented the paper: "Movement and Management of Animals in the North and West of Africa from 1000 BC to AD 1000", (with B. Tyr Fothergill and Veerle Linseele)

Congratulations to Lizzie Wright!

Lizzie Wright has won an Archaeological Institute of America Archaeology in Portugal Fellowship for 2015-16 for her project Animal husbandry in late Neolithic and Chalcolithic Portugal. This work will involve studying some new faunal assemblages and collecting samples for isotopic work, in order to explore various aspects of animal husbandry at late Neolithic and Chalcolithic sites in Portugal.

CDA Studentship available - Apply by 9th June

Candidates are invited to apply for a Collaborative Doctoral Award on the subject of Livestock and landscape: changing husbandry, livestock improvement and landscape enclosure in late and post-medieval England. The project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and will be co-supervised by Umberto Albarella (University of Sheffield) and Andrew Lowerre/Polydora Baker (Historic England). 

The award includes coverage of full fees (at UK/EU level) for the three year duration of the project, and a three-year maintenance scholarship of the value of £14,106 per annum. There will also be allowances for research expenses, including computer materials, and coverage of project-specific travel and subsistence (£2000 per annum provided by Historic England).  Full details and how to apply can be downloaded from the Archaeology Home Page.

Congratulations to Idoia Grau!

Idoia Grau has been awarded a postdoc from the Basque Government! Her postdoc will start in January and she will be in Sheffield for two years.

Day workshop and exhibition: Humans, livestock and their landscape: past, present and future. 5th May 2015.

Umberto Albarella is organising a day workshop under the title “Humans, livestock and their landscape: past, present and future” as part of his British Academy Project. The workshop will take place in the Jessop West Exhibition space and feature speakers from a number of departments.

Angelos Hadjikoumis and Umberto Albarella will also present an exhibition called “Herding pigs and other forms of traditional pastoralism in the Mediterranean” to be held in the foyer area of the Jessop West Exhibition space.

New publication:

Grau-Sologestoa, I. 2015. Livestock management in Spain from Roman to post-medieval times: a biometrical analysis of cattle, sheep/goat and pig. Journal of Archaeological Science 54, 123-34.

Find the paper here:

Zooarchaeology short courses at the University of Sheffield

Understanding Zooarchaeology I: 26th- 28th January 2015 (SOLD OUT!)

Understanding Zooarchaeology II: 29th- 30th January 2015

The Understanding Zooarchaeology I short course is now sold out for January 2015, but if you’d like us to send you an email when the next course has been arranged drop us a line at Places are going fast on the Understanding Zooarchaeology II course, for more info about the course and to book your place visit

News and events archive