Dr. TOYNE (Since 2012)

  • Toyne is a bioarchaeologist who has developed research projects examining prehistoric life with a primary focus in South American Peru. She is current working with bioarchaeological samples from various collaborations around the world examining paleodiet and paleomobility in the past. Human bone, teeth, and hair samples come from distinct burial contexts and cultures. Animal remains (bone and hair) are selected from food refuse deposits and the sites and are used to reconstruct the stable isotope variation available as food sources in the environment; create food webs used by humans.
  • These exciting research projects help us understand how individuals of different social status had access to different foods, how different ecological contexts and cultural environments influence food strategies and population movement.
  • New projects also include work with forensic applications and experimental protocols for sampling strategies.
  • Archaeological Sites:
  • Peru, South America
    • Túcume – Dr. Toyne has ongoing stable isotope projects at the north coastal site of Túcume (occupied from ~1000 to 1535 AD), where she has been site osteologist for over 20 years. Various cemetery contexts have been excavated providing unique projects for examining dietary and population variation across the site. Most interesting have been the distinct types of human sacrifices and offerings recovered from sacred contexts.
    • Chachapoyas region of the eastern highlands – Dr. Toyne has be an associated investigator and osteologist working with colleagues at Kuelap since 2004. A large selection of samples have been collected to explore the dietary variation at this unique monumental site. In collaboration with other archaeologists, various Chachapoya sites have also been sampled to increase the understanding of regional variation, including Revash, La Petaca, Monte Viudo, and Purunllacta de Soloco. A new project looking at colonial transitions will advance our understanding of early historical life in Chachapoyas.
    • Huacas de Moche, on the northern coast, along with local archaeologists we are investigating dietary and mobility variation among sacrificed individuals and burials from the urban core.
  • Croatia
    • Nadin-Gradina – Dr. Toyne was invited to work with materials from recent excavations at the near coastal hillfort site of Nadin-Gradina. The project excavations and investigations are run by the University of Zadar, Dr. Martina Čedhar and SUNY-New Paltz, Dr. Ken Nystrom. New tombs and burials have produced materials for stable isotope analysis of diet and mobility.
    • Avar Period – In collaboration with Dr. Mario Novak at the Institute for Anthropological Research, Zagreb, we are working on continental sites and osteological materials that date to the Avar period (Early Medieval). We will explore the reconstruction of diet and mobility from various archaeological contexts, with an express focus on the impact of settlement transitions and migration on childhood and adult health.
  • Northern Ireland – Dr. Toyne is currently also collaborating with colleagues at Queen’s University, Belfast, to investigate stable isotope variation from sites along the coast during the Medieval period in Kilroot Co.





MASTERS research

  • 2021 Erin Martin, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Central Florida. M.A. Thesis title: Forensic implications for the diagenetic alteration of the stable isotopic composition of pig ribs following exposure to aqueous conditions.
  • 2021 Dylan Smith, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Central Florida. M.A. Thesis title: Dietary variation of social elites with a Late Horizon cemetery (A.D. 1470–1532) at Túcume, Peru: Stable carbon and nitrogen isotopic analyses of Huaca Las Abejas
  • 2021 Marlon Koci, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Central Florida. M.A. Thesis title: Understanding the dietary behavior of a 7-8th century Avar community from Jagodnjak, Croatia, using stable isotope analysis of bone collagen
  • 2018 Samantha Michell, Dept. of Anthropology, University of Central Florida. M.A. Thesis title: Animals of the Cloud Forest: An isotopic analysis of faunal remains from Kuelap, Peru.

Honors Undergraduate Theses

  • 2018 Marley Denierio, HIM Undergraduate Thesis, Dept. of Anthropology, UCF. Project title: Feeding the children: A Paleodietary Reconstruction of Juveniles from Kuelap.



Research Slide 1
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