Dr. Steven James, Professor of Anthropology, California State University, Fullerton, discusses whether wild dogs of Alaskan breeds were found on San Nicolas Island.
Scientists who study the remains of dead animals, such as bones or shells, are called zooarcheologists. Based on zooarcheological studies, two sizes of dogs have been found on San Nicolas Island, that of a short-nosed dog and a medium-to-large-size dog.
When American sea captain George Nidever was searching for the Lone Woman on San Nicolas in 1853, he observed that the “wild dogs” were the size of a coyote, but that their fur was black and white in color.
Two later accounts mention that the black and white dogs may have been an Alaskan breed left behind by the Aleut otter hunters in the early 1800s (nineteenth century). However, the presence of an Alaskan dog breed on San Nicolas Island has not been verified by archeological research.
Listen to chapter 15 entry
Learn about the dog breeds found on San Nicolas Island.
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Last updated: November 26, 2017