About the Laboratory

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Laboratory of Archaeobotany and Palaeoecology (LAPE) is specialized research body of the university founded in September 2002 at the Faculty of Science, University of South Bohemia as part of the Department of Botany. Since 2014 LAPE is a separate department of Faculty of Science.

Research activity of laboratory members is targeted at the area of bioarchaeology and palaeoecology, namely archaeobotany, archaeozoology, but also other specializations dealing with interaction between humans and environment in history. Bachelor, magister and doctor theses namely in botany, zoology and environmental archaeology are developed within the laboratory. In the case of environmental archaeology, laboratory closely collaborates with the Institute of Archaeology, Faculty of Philosophy. LAPE comprises research in the Czech Republic as well as abroad. LAPE also offers services for other research bodies. Besides consultancy concerning natural sciences in archaeology LAPE provides analytical work in several areas of bioarchaeology. LAPE co-edits the international journal Interdisciplinaria Archaeologica, Natural Sciences in Archaeology (IANSA).


Archaeolozoology is a scientific discipline which refers to the study of animal remains (bones, teeth, horny tissue, conches of molluscs etc.) from archaeological sites. The goal of archaeozoology is to gain and to better understand the relation between humans and animals in the past. Archaeozoology links up the archaeological informations with the results of zoological analysis. This connection can bring valuable conclusions about human nutrition because a meat formed an important component of diet next to the plants. Some animals did not serve only for the consumption purpose, they were unexpendable in the social affiliation and belief systems or they were breeded as pets for an emotional support and used for other products (fur, wool, milk, force etc.). The archaeozoological research is focused both on the macroscopic tissues of vertebrate and invertebrate and on their DNA, the traces elements or the stable isotopes contained in the bones and teeth.

The archaeozoological research is primarily based on identification, analysis and interpretation. The identification stage can be equated with collecting primary data (taxonomic identification, elements represented, specimen count, modifications and pathologies, anatomical features of age and sex, measurements, taphonomy etc.). The analytical part is deriving from secondary data (body dimensions, slaughtering profiles, sex ratios, relative frequencies of taxa or skeletal frequency etc.). Primary and secondary data form the basis for interpretations, which focus on the human subsistence strategies, domestication of animals, spacial and temporal aspects of the animal resources etc.

Study of archaeozoology at the University of South Bohemia:

  • Archaeozoology (KZO/163) – Faculty of Science (Department of zoology, master´s degree)
  • Archaeozoology for archaeologists (UAR AZA) – Faculty of Philosophy (Institute of archeology, master´s degree)
  • Introduction to environmental archaeology II (UAR/RUE2) – Faculty of Philosophy (Institute of archeology, bachelor degree)

Where to find us?

Laboratory of Archaeobotany and Palaeoecology

  • Faculty of Sciences,
  • University of South Bohemia
  • Na Zlaté stoce 3
  • 370 05 České Budějovice



+420 38 903 6306
+420 38 903 6308

© 2013 LAPE  |   Administration