Zooarchaeology is a science engaged in research on animal bone (faunal) remains from archaeological sites, in order to better understand the relationships between people and their environment, especially between humans and the animal population. Basically, this science is involved with remains of the food of ancient people, the remains of animals that once were hunted, cared for, used for transport, ritually sacrificed, used for manufacture of bone tools, or simply animals that existed together with humans.
This science is characterized by interdisciplinary approaches, used in the process of studying the animal remains, and, together with other specialized sciences such as physical anthropology, archaeobotany, geology and chemistry, it helps archaeology to get a full picture of the way of life of our ancestors and the environment in which they were living. Nevertheless, except for patterns of human behavior, zooarchaeology is engaged primarily with the animals themselves and their evolution over time.
Although zooarchaeology is not a new science, still in these regions it is not well known. Macedonian archaeological sites offer rich archaeozoological material, which has not yet been sufficiently investigated. For the first time in Macedonia, in the Archaeological Museum, a Department of Zooarchaeology has been created. For reasons already mentioned, it will be actively engaged in the investigation, research, and presentation of the final results from faunal remains, in order to obtain a complete picture of animal species in the past, their presence on archaeological sites in Macedonia, the morphological changes over time, and certainly the relationship between humans and animals.
M.A. Aneta Fidanoska, zooarchaeologist.