Immigrants (whether people or animals) from Campania should be directly traceable through Strontium isotope (Sr) analysis on skeletal remains, if the two provinces are found to be sufficiently distinct in their geology. Sr is naturally present in rocks and minerals and its isotopes ratio varies with respect to age and geological environment. As rocks weather into soils, the 87Sr/86Sr ratio enters the food chain and ends up in animal and human tissues. Since tooth enamel in particular does not change after mineralization, its Sr reflects the local ratio of the area in which a person grew up whereas his bone Sr signature reflects the area in which he died. Sr analysis is an effective and widely used technique to assess ancient mobility (Ericson 1985; Price et al. 1994 and 2002; Giblin et al. 2013), and good local Sr ratio signatures may be obtained from skeletons from excavated burials at Grotta Vittorio Vecchi (Rosini 2007) and Valvisciolo/Caracupa (Angle & Gianni 1985) as well as from small animal bones from the Tratturio Caniò excavation (Feiken et al. 2012). Sr analysis of tooth enamel from the earliest post-AV sites (e.g., Grotta Vittorio Vecchi) could then provide direct proof of a non-local origin.
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Ericson, J.E. (1985). Strontium isotope characterization in the study of prehistoric human ecology. Journal of Human Evolution 14(5), 503–514. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0047-2484(85)80029-4
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Giblin, J.I., Knudson, K.J., Bereczki, Z., Pálfi, G. & Pap, I. (2013). Strontium isotope analysis and human mobility during the Neolithic and Copper Age: a case study from the Great Hungarian Plain. Journal of Archaeological Science 40(1), 227–239. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2012.08.024
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Rosini, L., 2007. I materiali della Grotta Vittorio Vecchi (Sezze, LT), in Atti della XL Riunione Scientifica dell’Istituto Italiano di Preistoria e Protostoria, Strategie di insediamento fra Lazio e Campania in età preistorica e protostorica, 695–703
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