News Article | February 21, 2017
A clay model of the head of Kennewick Man, is shown in this undated file photo, based on a 9,300-year-old skull found in July 1996 in a park along the Columbia River in south-central Washington, is shown at Columbia Basin College, in Richland, Wash. The likeness was made by sculptor Tom McClelland and anthropologist Jim Chatters. —After a 20-year legal battle between scientists and Native American groups, the 9,000-year-old remains of the Kennewick Man have finally been laid to rest. The first part of the ancient man's remains, which turned out to be one of the oldest and most complete ever found in North America, was discovered in 1996 on the banks of the Columbia River in Kennewick, Wash. The remains were excavated for study by scientists, who thought that the Kennewick Man, as he came to be called, might be a descendant of people who migrated from Asia into North America even before the populations that were the ancestors of modern Native Americans came to the continent. Many local Native American tribes disagreed, claiming that the remains belonged to one of their ancestors. This claim launched a court battle in an attempt to get the Kennewick Man, whom the tribes refer to as the Ancient One, reburied according to their religious customs, as would be required by the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. Genetic tests in the early 2000s, however, led scientists to conclude that Kennewick Man was more closely related to people from Japan and Polynesia, causing the local tribes to lose federal cases in 2002 and 2004. But DNA technology has improved a great deal since then, and in 2015, a new genetic analysis found that the scientists' initial conclusions about Kennewick Man's ancestry had been incorrect. Researchers then tried to determine which Native American groups he was most similar to, as the Christian Science Monitor's Pete Spotts reported at the time: Of the small number of samples available, Kennewick Man was closer to native American groups from the Northwest. Among those, the closest link was with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, one of five tribal groups in the region involved in efforts to repatriate the remains. The researchers offer two scenarios that could have led to the genetic differences that exist between Kennewick Man and the Colville tribes. They could have split from a common group about 700 years before Kennewick Man lived. Or the Colville group could be direct descendants, with an additional influx of other genes working their way into the genomes of the Colville group during the past 8,500 years. The team's results didn't allow them to pick an out-and-out winner among these two scenarios, says Rasmus Nielsen, a geneticist from the University of California at Berkeley and another member of the team. But, he adds, there is enough evidence to suggest that the second scenario may be the right one. "We always knew the Ancient One to be Indian," Aaron Ashley, a board member of the Umatilla tribe, told The Los Angeles Times. "We have oral stories that tell of our history on this land, and we knew, at the moment of his discovery, that he was our relation." In light of the new DNA analysis, Sen. Patty Murray (D) of Washington state introduced a bill in 2015 to repatriate the remains. The bill was signed into law by then-President Barack Obama. On Saturday, more than 200 members of the Umatilla, Yakama Nation, Nez Perce Tribe, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Wanapum Band of Indians, met at a secret burial location on the Columbia Plateau, according to The Seattle Times. The Ancient One was laid to rest with songs "very close" to what would have been sung during Kennewick Man's time, Chuck Sams, the communications director for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, told the Times. "A wrong had finally been righted," Mr. Sams told the Seattle Times. He also pointed out that over 100,000 sets of Native American remains still belong to collections across the United States. In the 20 years since the skeleton was discovered, a great deal has been learned about the Kennewick Man. Researchers determined that he weighed 163 pounds at the time of his death, and stood approximately 5 feet, 7 inches tall. He was right-handed, and appeared to have subsisted on a diet of fish or marine mammals, though he hunted various land animals as well. Before his death, at about age 40, there is evidence that Kennewick Man survived two major injuries, including a projectile point embedded in his hip bone. And for now, it seems, his story has come to a close. "The return of our ancestor to Mother Earth is a blessing for all Yakama people," reads a statement from the Yakama Nation. "The Ancient One (also known as the 'Kennewick Man') may now finally find peace, and we, his relatives, will equally feel content knowing that this work has been completed on his behalf."
News Article | April 28, 2016
Kennewick Man, among the oldest and most complete set of ancient skeletons found in North America, is Native American, a new report has revealed. Last year, scientists were able to uncover genetic evidence, which showed that the ancient remains, also known as the Ancient One, have strong DNA similarities with Native Americans more than other populations. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Northwestern Division announced on April 26 that they arrived at a conclusion after a thorough review of the DNA and skeletal analyses provided to them. Commander of corps' Northwestern Division Brig. Gen. Scott A. Spellmon expressed confidence in their findings [PDF] - statistical, skeletal, and genetic evidence all support Native American origins of Kennewick Man. The Ancient One, believed to be about 8,500 years old, was found in 1996 in Washington near the Columbia River in Kennewick. Since it was found under federal land, the U.S. Army Corps handled the bones. In the past, scientists would associate modern native tribes to have Siberian ancestors who used a land bridge that previously extended to Alaska. Kennewick Man, however, has skull features that suggest a different origin. Scientists wanted to study the set of bones, while tribes pressed that it should be immediately buried. The arguments have led to a legal battle between the tribes and scientists. After winning the 2004 court battle, scientists proceeded to study the remains. With the latest findings, the skeleton is now under the Native American Graves Protections and Repatriation Act. No further scientific study can be carried out. While processing the return of the bones to the tribes, Kennewick Man will be kept under the care of the Burke Museum. Corps spokesperson Michael Coffey said the process of deciding on which tribe would have the right to bury the ancient remains would take a while. Cultural affiliation should first be established. The corps is now awaiting interested tribes to submit a claim. Colville, Nez Perce, Umatilla, Yakama, and Wanapum Indians have previously claimed relation to the Kennewick Man. Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation in Oregon communications director Chuck Sams said that they will cooperate with the corps to accelerate the burial of Kennewick Man. "We will send in our joint request for disposition for the reburial of the Ancient One," said Sams. © 2016 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
Moser M.L.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration |
Jackson A.D.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Lucas M.C.,Durham University |
Mueller R.P.,Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Reviews in Fish Biology and Fisheries | Year: 2014
Upon metamorphosis, anadromous juvenile lamprey (macrophthalmia) exhibit distinct migration behaviors that take them from larval rearing habitats in streams to the open ocean. While poorly studied, lamprey larvae (ammocoetes) also engage in downstream movement to some degree. Like migrating salmon smolts, lamprey macrophthalmia undergo behavioral changes associated with a highly synchronized metamorphosis. Unlike salmon smolts, the timing of juvenile migration in lamprey is protracted and poorly documented. Lamprey macrophthalmia and ammocoetes are not strong swimmers, attaining maximum individual speeds of less than 1 m s−1, and sustained speeds of less than 0.5 m s−1. They are chiefly nocturnal and distribute throughout the water column, but appear to concentrate near the bottom in the thalweg of deep rivers. At dams and irrigation diversions, macrophthalmia can become impinged on screens or entrained in irrigation canals, suffer increased predation, and experience physical injury that may result in direct or delayed mortality. The very structures designed to protect migrating juvenile salmonids can be harmful to juvenile lamprey. Yet at turbine intakes and spillways, lampreys, which have no swim bladder, can withstand changes in pressure and shear stress large enough to injure or kill most teleosts. Lamprey populations are in decline in many parts of the world, with some species designated as species of concern for conservation that merit legally mandated protections. Hence, provisions for safe passage of juvenile lamprey are being considered at dams and water diversions in North America and Europe. © 2014, Springer International Publishing Switzerland (outside the USA).
Ranco D.J.,University of Maine, United States |
O'Neill C.A.,Seattle University |
Donatuto J.,Swinomish Indian Tribal Community |
Harper B.L.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation
Environmental Justice | Year: 2011
Environmental justice in the tribal context cannot be contemplated apart from a recognition of American Indian tribes' unique historical, political, and legal circumstances. American Indian tribes are sovereign governments, with inherent powers of self-government over their citizens and their territories. Their status as sovereign entities predates contact with European settlers. This separate status, nonetheless, was affirmed by the United States early on and is enshrined in the U.S. Constitution. Tribes today continue to exist as distinct sovereigns within the boundaries of the United States. © Copyright 2011, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.
Black B.A.,University of Texas at Austin |
Dunham J.B.,U.S. Geological Survey |
Blundon B.W.,Bureau of Land Management |
Brim-Box J.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Tepley A.J.,University of Colorado at Boulder
Global Change Biology | Year: 2015
Analyses of how organisms are likely to respond to a changing climate have focused largely on the direct effects of warming temperatures, though changes in other variables may also be important, particularly the amount and timing of precipitation. Here, we develop a network of eight growth-increment width chronologies for freshwater mussel species in the Pacific Northwest, United States and integrate them with tree-ring data to evaluate how terrestrial and aquatic indicators respond to hydroclimatic variability, including river discharge and precipitation. Annual discharge averaged across water years (October 1-September 30) was highly synchronous among river systems and imparted a coherent pattern among mussel chronologies. The leading principal component of the five longest mussel chronologies (1982-2003; PC1mussel) accounted for 47% of the dataset variability and negatively correlated with the leading principal component of river discharge (PC1discharge; r = -0.88; P < 0.0001). PC1mussel and PC1discharge were closely linked to regional wintertime precipitation patterns across the Pacific Northwest, the season in which the vast majority of annual precipitation arrives. Mussel growth was also indirectly related to tree radial growth, though the nature of the relationships varied across the landscape. Negative correlations occurred in forests where tree growth tends to be limited by drought while positive correlations occurred in forests where tree growth tends to be limited by deep or lingering snowpack. Overall, this diverse assemblage of chronologies illustrates the importance of winter precipitation to terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems and suggests that a complexity of climate responses must be considered when estimating the biological impacts of climate variability and change. © 2014 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
News Article | February 20, 2017
KENNEWICK, Wash. (AP) — The ancient bones of the Kennewick Man have been returned to the ground. More than 200 members of five Columbia Plateau tribes and bands gathered at an undisclosed location over the weekend to lay the remains of the man they call the Ancient One to rest, according to an announcement Sunday by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, the Tri-City Herald reports (http://bit.ly/2mf1INA ). "We always knew the Ancient One to be Indian," said Aaron Ashley, Umatilla board member and chairman of the Cultural Resource Committee. "We have oral stories that tell of our history on this land, and we knew, at the moment of his discovery, that he was our relation." However, tribal members waited more than 20 years to be allowed to rebury the bones. Legislation signed by President Obama on Dec. 19 required the skeleton, believed to be about 8,400 years old, to be turned over to the coalition of tribes within 90 days. Representatives of the Umatilla, Yakama, Nez Perce and Colville tribes and the Wanapum Band met at the University of Washington's Burke Museum in Seattle on Friday to claim the remains of Kennewick Man stored there by the Army Corps of Engineers. "This is a big day and our people have come to witness and honor our ancestor," said Armand Minthorn, of the Umatilla tribal board. "We continue to practice our beliefs and laws as our creator has given us since time immemorial." Kennewick Man was found on the banks of the Columbia River about 20 years ago by two college students during the Water Follies festival. The skeleton is among the oldest and most complete found in North America. Tribes immediately filed claims for the Ancient One, but a federal judge, swayed by an analysis of the shape of Kennewick Man's skull, determined that the skeleton was not Native American and allowed scientists to study the bones. But a scientific study determined the bones likely are those of an ancestor of today's Native Americans. Technology advances allowed a global team, including specialists in ancient DNA analysis at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark, to compare DNA from the bones and that of modern-day populations. The Ancient One's DNA was a closer match to modern Native Americans, including the Colvilles, than any other modern peoples.
Mock K.E.,Utah State University |
Brim Box J.C.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Chong J.P.,Utah State University |
Howard J.K.,Nature Conservancy |
And 3 more authors.
Molecular Ecology | Year: 2010
Freshwater mussels (unionids) are increasingly recognized as important providers of ecosystem services, yet are among the most endangered fauna in the world. Because unionids are generally sessile and require specific fish hosts for development and dispersal, they are particularly vulnerable to habitat degradation. Surprisingly, little is known about the distribution of genetic diversity in freshwater mussels and this gap has a negative impact on taxonomy, monitoring, conservation and ecological research in these species. Here, we focus on western North American Anodonta, one of only three genera known to exist in this broad landscape and which contains three highly divergent lineages. We describe phylogeographical subdivision in the most widespread and diverse of these lineages, which includes Anodonta californiensis and Anodonta nuttalliana and occurs from Canada to Mexico. Using mitochondrial and nuclear data, we found that genetic structuring within this clade is inconsistent with morphologically based species designations, but instead follows patterns of vicariance among major hydrogeologic basins. Furthermore, there was a strong tendency for population diversity within drainage systems to increase downstream, implying greater habitat or host fish availability in this direction. Microsatellite results indicated that sampling locations were all genetically distinct, even at short distances. Many of our sample populations showed evidence of a recent demographic bottleneck, although this effect seemed to be very local and not drainage or basin-specific. This study provides a foundation for the establishment of appropriate management units and future research on adaptive differentiation and host fish relationships. © 2010 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Mock K.E.,Utah State University |
Brim Box J.C.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Chong J.P.,Utah State University |
Furnish J.,U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region |
Howard J.K.,Nature Conservancy
Molecular Ecology | Year: 2013
We investigate population genetic structuring in Margaritifera falcata, a freshwater mussel native to western North America, across the majority of its geographical range. We find shallow rangewide genetic structure, strong population-level structuring and very low population diversity in this species, using both mitochondrial sequence and nuclear microsatellite data. We contrast these patterns with previous findings in another freshwater mussel species group (Anodonta californiensis/A. nuttalliana) occupying the same continental region and many of the same watersheds. We conclude that differences are likely caused by contrasting life history attributes between genera, particularly host fish requirements and hermaphroditism. Further, we demonstrate the occurrence of a 'hotspot' for genetic diversity in both groups of mussels, occurring in the vicinity of the lower Columbia River drainage. We suggest that stream hierarchy may be responsible for this pattern and may produce similar patterns in other widespread freshwater species. © 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
News Article | February 20, 2017
Experts collaborated to create a bust showing how Kennewick Man, also known as the Ancient One, may have looked. (Sculpted bust by StudioEIS; forensic facial reconstruction by sculptor Amanda Danning; photograph by Brittany Tatchell / Smithsonian) After more than 20 years, one of anthropology’s most contentious cases was closed over the weekend with the reburial of the 9,000-year-old remains of Kennewick Man, now better known as the Ancient One. More than 200 people, including members of five Native American tribes, gathered at an undisclosed site on the Columbia River Plateau early Saturday to bury the remains in accordance with centuries-old funerary rituals, the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation said in a news release. “This is a big day, and our people have come to witness and honor our ancestor,” said Armand Minthorn, a member of the Umatilla tribes’ board of trustees and Longhouse leader. “We continue to practice our beliefs and laws as our Creator has given us since time immemorial.” The reburial marks the final chapter in a saga that began in 1996, when two college students spotted the Ancient One’s skeleton along the banks of the Columbia River near Kennewick, Wash. Experts recovered and studied the remains, determining that they were roughly 9,000 years old. Archaeologists initially said the proportions of the skull were a closer match for Europeans than for Native Americans, setting off a years-long debate over the Ancient One’s origins. Five Pacific Northwest tribes pressed the Army Corps of Engineers, which had jurisdiction over the bones, to hand them over for repatriation in accordance with federal law. However, a group of scientists sued to block the handover, arguing that the skeleton was not associated with a present-day tribe. Federal judges sided with the scientists, and the 380 bones and bone fragments were made available for study. Once the studies were complete, the corps had the remains locked away at Seattle’s Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. The big break in the case came in 2015, when scientists announced that DNA extracted from a hand bone was a relatively close match to an individual from the Colville confederation, one of the five tribes that originally filed suit. (The others are the Umatilla, Yakama, Nez Perce and Wanapum.) Further studies confirmed that the skeleton’s characteristics were in the proper range for Native Americans, leading to a definitive ruling from the Army Corps of Engineers. Late last year, federal legislation cleared the way for handing over the remains. Representatives of the five tribes, the Army Corps of Engineers and state officials gathered at the Burke Museum on Friday for the formal handover. The remains, including a stone spear point that was found embedded in the Ancient One’s pelvis, were driven in a caravan for an overnight stop in Richland, Wash., according to a Seattle Times account. The reburial site took place the next morning. The tribes have said the location will remain undisclosed to guard against the possibility of future desecration.
O'Brien C.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Nez D.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Wolf D.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation |
Box J.B.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation
Northwest Science | Year: 2013
The reproductive biology of the California floater (Anodonta californiensis), western ridged mussel (Gonidea angulata) and western pearlshell (Margaritifera falcata) was studied in the Middle Fork John Day River from May 2005 to July 2011. Anodonta californiensis was gravid from early May to late July. Mature A. californiensis glochidia were hooked, rust-colored, sub-triangulate, averaged 276 μm in length, and were similar in size to other glochidia of the genus Anodonta. Gravid G. angulata were found only in June. Mature G. angulata glochidia were hookless, white, sub-round, and averaged 171 μm in length, similar to the oval pigtoe (Pleurobema pyriforme). Margaritifera falcata were gravid in early May. Mature M. falcata glochidia were hookless, white, sub-round, and averaged 55 μm in length, a size and shape similar to the spectacle case (Cumberlandia monodonta). Anodonta californiensis glochidia were found attached to six wild-caught fish species from early June to late July. In contrast, G. angulata glochidia were found attached only to wild-caught sculpin (Cottus sp.) in late July. No M. falcata glochidia were observed on fish in the field. In laboratory experiments, speckled dace (Rhinichthys osculus) was a confirmed primary host and the longnose dace (R. cataractae), and margined sculpin (Cottus marginatus) served as unconfirmed primary hosts for A. californiensis. Margined and shorthead sculpin (C. confusus) were identified as unconfirmed primary hosts for G. angulata. © 2013 by the Northwest Scientific Association. All rights reserved.