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Human of the Neolithic period started to domesticate animals

Updated on September 19, 2016

Dog and sheep group


The history of Neolithic Age

Human beings lived a nomadic life for thousands of years. At that time, they were hunters and gatherers. During the New Stone, which is also known as the Neolithic Age, around 10,000 years ago, early humans began to produce their own food and lead a settled life. Changes in climate played a very important role at the time. A large portion of the Earth’s surface was covered with ice sheets at the beginning of the Neolithic Age. Due to climate change, the ice melted and these areas became habitable. Warm climate was best suited for crops and habitations. As a result, dry areas became open grasslands and forests became dense.

Environmental changes

The climate of the world changed. it became warm from cold. Due to this change, grasslands developed. This development increased the number of animals that survived on grass.

Farming the period of Neolithic


Beginning of farming

Agriculture was the greatest discovery of the Neolithic Age. During this period early humans learnt the technique of sowing seeds, growing plants and finally harvesting them. They must have learnt this accidentally or by observing the plants growing in the wild. The first cereals to be cultivated were wheat and barley. As time passed, early humans began to grow more crops. This changed their lifestyle.

During this time, several grain – bearing grasses including rice, barley and wheat grew naturally in different parts of the sub – continent. Early humans collected these grains and used them as food. They learnt their cycle when they repent and where they grow. This might have been the beginning of growing plants by humans.

Domestication of animals

Human of the Neolithic period started to domesticate animals. The dog was probably the first animal to be tamed. Later, other animals like goats and sheep were also domesticated. As a result, there was a continuous supply of milk and related products and also of meat. Fishing and hunting also began. Some animals were used in agriculture and transportation.
They learned about their breeding seasons and food habits. Slowly, people started thinking about rearing these animals themselves.

Evidence of bones of domesticated animals have been found
Sheep, goat and cattle bones were found at the site of Pakistan. Animals' bones were found at Koldihwa in Uttar Pradesh. Cattle bones were found at Mahagara in Uttar Pradesh. Dog, cattle and sheep, goat and buffalo bones were found at Burzahom in Kashmir. Buffalo, ox cattle and sheep bones were found at Chirand in Bihar. Sheep and cattle bones were found at Paiyamaplli in Andhra Pradesh.

Mehrgarh ruins in Baluchistan


Case study of Mehrgarh

Mehrgarh is located in a fertile plain, near the Bolan pass in Baluchistan, Pakistan. It provided evidence of the earliest agricultural and pastoral communities in South Asia. Mehrgarh is one of the oldest Neolithic sites which had continuous occupation. Archaeologists found evidences of many kinds of animal bones from the earliest levels. Bones of wild animals such as deer are found. In later levels, bones of sheep and goats are found, and in still later levels, cattle bones are most common. It shows that these animals were kept by the people.


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