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goat
CATEGORY: fauna
DEFINITION: A member of the genus Capra, different from the Ovis genus (sheep) by differences in scent glands, the presence of a beard, and the scimitar-like horns sweeping back from the forehead. Goat bones first appear in Middle Paleolithic levels of caves. The first evidence for possible human management is at Shanidar Cave, Kurdistan, where there are high proportions of juvenile goats and sheep around c 8500 BC. Domesticated bones are recorded from such early sites as Jericho, Jarmo, and Çatal Hüyük. Goats seem to have been imported into Europe already domesticated; they appear in the Aegean before 6000 BC. For archaeologists goats may be hard to differentiate from sheep, especially in the skeleton.

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