Caution Bay pre-Lapita–Lapita–post-Lapita archaeological database and shell reference collections

  • McNiven, Ian (Primary Chief Investigator (PCI))
  • Ulm, Sean (Chief Investigator (CI))
  • David, Bruno (Chief Investigator (CI))
  • Leavesley, Matthew G. (Partner Investigator (PI))
  • Mate, Geraldine (Partner Investigator (PI))
  • Urwin, Chris (Associate Investigator (AI))
  • Petchey, Fiona (Partner Investigator (PI))
  • Rowe, Cassandra (Associate Investigator (AI))
  • Lambridges, Ariana (Associate Investigator (AI))

Project: Research

Project Details

Project Description

RT&E: This project will serve the dual purpose of identifying the archaeological shell and publishing the data from key and currently unanalysed long Caution Bay site sequences, including their full databases, and create research and teaching reference collections for current and future generations across a number of tertiary and museum institutions, including at the host nation of PNG (both UPNG and at the PNG National Museum). The PNG National Museum has confirmed that shell reference collections can be retained by Australian universities, and that reference collections from the Caution Bay assemblages would be welcomed for PNG institutions. The post-doc will also run a CABAH Short Course on archaeomalacology each year of the post-doc. The Masterclass may be held at a CABAH node campus, or by Zoom (depending on travel restrictions at the time, and CABAH member requests/interests). The CABAH post-doc would also travel to UPNG once a year over each of 2 years (COVID lockdowns permitting), where they will run a dedicated hands-on laboratory short-course for UPNG and PNG National Museum students, curators and researchers. The post-doc will also help mentor CABAH Honours and postgraduate students undertaking their own shell analyses, towards building capacity in specialist archaeological shell analysis.E&E: A critical part of the shell analysis is identification of shell artefacts. Indeed, Caution Bay has some of the earliest-known examples of pre-Lapita shell artefacts in New Guinea. Examples of these artefacts will be included in the Coral Sea exhibition currently in development by CABAH and the Queensland Museum.
Short titleCaution Bay Shells
Effective start/end date1/07/211/07/23


  • Caution Bay
  • Pacific Islander History
  • Melanesian History
  • Shellfish Remans
  • Shell Collections
  • Archeology