Greater New World redux

Since I'm a glutton for punishment,I'll give it one more try.......................................
Basically here's my goals.
(1) Surviving and expanded Rapa Nui/Vinland bringing their tech and animals to Americas.
(2) Australia and New Zealand gets more domesticates revolving around reptiles and birds with Australian Aboriginals getting knowledge of catamarans.
(3) Malagasy explore and colonize Mascarenes/possibly Kerguelen while on the opposite end of Africa,the Guanche colonize the rest of Macronesia and make contact with outer edge of Caribbean.
(4) More domesticates in the Americas via rodents. I mean the Hystriacomorphs which has tons of candidates for domestication. Indeed the only other mammalian order with more domesticable candidates are the Artiodactyls. Also reptiles and birds are explored.
(5) Some recent extinctions do not happen. I mean moa,elephant bird,moa-nalo and a few others. Let's say they become status symbols and the larger ratites gets use as mounts. And yes,people ride the it can happen.
(6) Antarctica gets colonized by the Fuegians. No,it does not become Green Antarctica.
There probably will not be much about named people and I'm not good with dates. Or new diseases for that matter.
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For Australia,I'd like to expand on a few of their techniques. Fire-stick farming and eel farming via a form of aquaculture was practiced. The people around the southwestern corner of Australia were practicing both these techniques and essentially had a form of agriculture going. The next step would be to cultivate plants and domesticate some animals. And believe it or not,there are several plant and animal species that qualify. A big hindrance however, is outside of the dingo there's a lack of large placental mammals, No cattle,pig or even rabbits that could be used. What they had however,were certain birds and lizards both monitor and iguanid. The birds and lizards could easily offer a steady supply of meat,skins and in the case of the emu,oil. So,here's my scenario of what could have played out................................................
Roughly 8,000 years ago,women of eel-farming clans discovered that the remains of short-finned eels helped certain desired plants to grow and that when combined with a cold burn(form of fire-stick farming),the plants grew faster and in greater quantities. They also began to observe that spilled seed around buried remains grew. In other words,planting seeds. And there were several plants they wanted around.

Many of them were wattles or acacias for another term. Black wattle,kurrajong and coast wattle were highly desired for their seeds which could be ground into flour. In essence,a primitive form of silviculture was being practiced and honed. And due to the aquaculture of short-finned eels,they also began to grow certain water plants. The coastal sword-sedge or kerbein as they called it was another source of nutrition and helped to attract certain birds. Such as the maned duck,who the people began to encourage keeping. Along with the malleefowl.
Both malleefowl and maned duck were important sources of reliable protein. It also helped that their dung could help the plants grow.
This helped the people to expand to other parts of South Australia.
Australia part 2
A few centuries after these new introductions to agriculture,there was a huge population explosion. The people,I'll call them Budj Bim People who are an blend of Gunditjmara and Noongar brought about by tribal alliance and intermarriage, had an steady increase in population. Which over time,put a strain over local resources. The previous domestications of the maned duck and malleefowl brought about a new domestication, the emu. Which in retrospect,was bound to happen as the emu were attracted to the crops. Larger and fiercer than the smaller birds, one would think to let them alone. But,it somewhat became a game for bold young men to capture the emu,preferably the chicks,so they could be fattened up for slaughter at maturity. In time,they allowed some the hens to lay eggs and to raise the chicks to maturity themselves. Emus however tend to be migratory,so older boys and young men would follow and watch over their emus bringing with them cuttings of their wattles. Basically,it became a form of silvopasture and over time the domesticated emu,malleefowl and maned duck began to take on a different look from their wild kin. Also domesticated around the same time was the gweela or brush-turkey. The Budj Bim People even began to competitions about the ability of their birds and sometimes their looks. After all, the better the flock, the greater prestige and chance for more wives.
Anyway,the increased population pressure and migratory tendencies of the emu led to a diaspora of sorts. Young people marching eastward,bringing with them their tech and agriculture methods.
Another surprising domesticate was the bearded dragon. Which came about partially due to the migrations. A chief reason was because of pests,primarily infestation of various insects that would threaten the trees. Bearded dragons,at least the young are decent insectivores, Over time the Bundj Bim People grew fond of them,much like with their dingoes. Yes,they kept dingoes with them,to help with their flocks of birds.
Once arriving at the Southeastern part of Australia,the Bundj Bim People began to look at what was available. Especially with the climate being somewhat different. Granted,they were larger in numbers than the natives of that region,so there were a few hostilities.
*cracks knuckles as the new expert on potential American domesticates*
The Americas had plenty of animals that could be domesticated. Quite a few animals were domesticated in the Americas already, like turkeys, llamas, alpacas, guinea pigs, and peccaries. Caribou (reindeer), rabbits, ducks, and geese were domesticated in Eurasia, and you could definitely do the same in North America. Goats were the first form of livestock to be domesticated, and while they aren’t true goats, the mountain goat of the Rocky Mountains would make an ideal domesticate. They live in hierarchies and are not too difficult to subdue. The bighorn sheep, while social, is less hierarchical except during mating season. If you could wrangle a few and pen them off somewhere, I imagine you could domesticate them. Capybaras are quite friendly creatures, and they would probably work too. Given that reindeer were domesticated, you could probably try the same with other species of deer. The kodkod, Geoffrey’s cat, and several other South American cats of the leopardus genus could become cats. The prairie chicken would work as another form of poultry. Bison may be difficult to domesticate, although it’s worth noting that similar beasts were domesticated all over Afro-Eurasia so that’s a bit in the air. A lot of North American megafauna was also driven to extinction by humans at the end of the last Ice Age. If they weren’t hunted to extinction, we could have a North America with camels, horses, and a few large cow-sized species of muskoxen. If you’re looking for insects, North America is home to a species of giant silk moth with a lot of potential, and the Mayans kept stingless honeybees.
So there’s actually a lot of potential besides rodents, but if that’s your main interest, then I guess capybaras, rats, and rabbits (I know, not a rodent) would be your best bet besides the guinea pig and chinchilla. For birds besides the turkey, I’d say ducks, geese, and prairie chickens.
@JSilvy has done a good job naming some potential American Domesticates, but I'll go ahead and elaborate on a few others as well. South America obviously already has Llama, Alapacas, and Guinea Pigs, but it also has the often forgotten Muscovy Duck (the only domestic duck not developed from Mallards!). Mesoamerica in turn had Turkey and Stingless Bees.

For domestication candidates, there's Peccary, Capybara, and potentially Tapirs in Mesoamerica to South America. Up north there's a lot of unexplored mammals, such as Bighorn Sheep (which while they lack a specific dominance hierarchy, they are herd animals), Bison, Elk (which I am discussing as a potential cavalry animal in another thread), and Moose. Reindeer and Muskox are also possibilities, but being Arctic species they're tougher to get widespread. Across the whole of both continents there's White-Tailed deer as well. As far as Poultry, there are a huge range of grouse specie such as Spruce Grouse, Ruffled Grouse, and the already mentioned Prairie chickens, plus Ducks like Mallards and the American Black Duck.

There are a number of fox species that can potentially play the role of cats, my favorites being the Kit Fox and the Arctic Fox, but honestly any of them would work. As for more exotics, Harris's Hawk is a really interesting possibility. Its a highly social bird that hunts in groups(!) and help each other nest. They're also really easy for humans to work with. All around, they have a lot going for them as a potential domestic animal.

If you want just rodents though, Beavers and Muskrats are some of your better candidates in North America.
It's not going to be just rodents.I'm also looking the muskox,peccary and pudu. The reindeer could definitely be introduced. Siberia is literally in view of Alaska and many Siberian tribes used them,so they'll probably get introduced. The muscovy duck and ocellated turkey are going to be used and widespread throughout the Americas. The Island Grey Fox was thought to be brought over by Native Americans,so the Grey Foxes will see some domestication as well as coyotes. I thought about the mountain goat,but the people capturing them for domestication would have to be the nimblest,most sure-footed people on the planet! There's a reason why their primary predator is the mountain lion(cougar).I looked into tapirs and they are foul tempered,however some tribes in the Amazon keep anteaters as pets,so I'm also looking at that. The stingless honeybees are definitely in,might do the prairie chicken and I want a domestic cat for the Americas,but need to do some research. Oh,there's tons of small cats in the Americas,but none that belong to the Wildcat gene that was domesticated in Africa. Maybe the jaguarundi? Ocelot?
Another thought,is perhaps taming the passenger pigeon. Squab was very popular in the Old World and'll be another source of protein. And since Vinland will succeed and expand. Not dominate,but have a substantial presence mind you,then I'm looking into them introducing falconry. And maybe using some New World raptors,probably also domesticating some New World weasels for ferreting as well. And since,the Norse will have brought over their dogs,I'm playing with maybe a new dog breed. The vallhund possibly crossed with the Eskimo Dog and maybe red wolf. The reason for rodents,is because there's a ton in the Hystricomorph family that's ideal. They get to be large for rodent's(some the size of pigs),are fairly docile and don't take up as much room as larger livestock like the Artiodactyls. Remember,Romans domesticated the Edible Dormouse,so rodents as livestock isn't far fetched. And since,coyotes were domesticated to a degree by some tribes,they might see some more coyote based breeds.
And iguanas are going to be domesticated. At least two or three varieties. Makes sense since most of them are herbivorous lizards who have a sizable amount of meat,are fairly docile and were kept by various tribes.
Basically,the Americas have more going for them in terms of domesticates as opposed to Australia and New Zealand.
Mountain goats don’t necessarily spend all of their time on hard-to-reach cliffsides. If you look up mountain goat herds you will see plenty of examples of them standing on more reasonable terrain.
That being said, I still consider the capybara the best domesticate that never happened. Large plump social creatures that are utterly non-threatening to humans.
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Mountain goats don’t necessarily spend all of their time on hard-to-reach cliffsides. If you look up mountain goat herds you will see plenty of examples of them standing on more reasonable terrain.
Perhaps. Maybe if the South American bola or equivalent made it's way to North America. The bola was used to capture rheas and guanaco,so they could definitely be used to capture weaned mountain goat kids. And one thing I like about it is how strong mountain goats are. Makes sense,since they are kin to the muskox. If after a few generations of selective breeding they could be harnessed as pack animals/beasts of burdens than that'll make travel easier. Definitely would be a fun domesticate for the Cliffdwellers and contemporaries. And more tolerant of temperate climates than the muskox. Bonus if their hair could be used for fiber and various goat breeds are used for mohair plus the alpaca hair is used for fiber. Downside is their temper,but most goats have attitude and maybe have a dog breed that knows how to handle them. OK,they're in.
The bighorn sheep are another possibility. Not as aggressive as the mountain goat,with a wider range and easier to get to. They hybridize readily with the Dall sheep and selective breeding could yield more wool. And of course a bonus for the disease fanboys around here is that they do have outbreaks of infectious pneumonia which after generations could transfer to the human population. Another domesticate.
Also for muskoxen it depends. Obviously not modern muskoxen, but the woodoxen and shrub-oxen (likely the same species) that died out at the end of the last Ice Age extended well into the southern US. Many existed in California, Texas, and even central Mexico.
Also,the Norse will have brought over Norwegian Forest Cat. A very hardy,very large breed of cat that's more than capable of the climate around the area. Since I'm having Vinland expand to perhaps Missouri,some of them could escape and hybridize with New World small cats. Not bobcat or lynx,but maybe the ocelot. We'll see. And the ocelot did range as far north as Arkansas.
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Before I head back to Australia,I will include certain species of chachalacas,guans, and curassows. Many of them get to be turkey size and since they're Galliform,they have a good carcass yield. Tapirs are as foul tempered as their rhinoceros kin,but they could possibly be handled with selective breeding. Hey,the Asian elephant was tamed several times in Africa and Asia as war mounts,so it can be done.
As for Australia,for the southern part,I will include the black swan and the magpie goose for northern Australia. Yes,the black swan will be eaten as there is no European prejudice about their nobility,just the fact that they are very large waterfowl with a huge dressed carcass and their feathers make for a pretty cloak. The New Zealand black swan will have the same fate and there might be cross-breeding between the two.
Malagasy colonizing the Mascarenes is later down the line,but the dodo and Rodriguez solitaire are spared. Since the dodo is essentially a giant,terrestrial dove, the Malagasy decide they make good eating and decide to keep some around,breed them and voila!,you got domesticated dodos and Rodriguez solitaires kept for their meat.
Also,the Norse will have brought over Norwegian Forest Cat. A very hardy,very large breed of cat that's more than capable of the climate around the area. Since I'm having Vinland expand to perhaps Missouri,some of them could escape and hybridize with New World small cats. Not bobcat or lynx,but maybe the ocelot. We'll see. And the ocelot did range as far north as Arkansas.
IIRC ocelot-domestic cat hybrids are very rare and almost impossible to occur naturally. Cats are too small to reliably mix with ocelots, even the very large Scandinavian landraces.
Tapirs are as foul tempered as their rhinoceros kin,but they could possibly be handled with selective breeding
Tapirs take years to grow to maturity and usually only have a single young.
Australia 3
Roughly 7'000 years ago. Driven by population pressure,some of the Budj Bim People had migrated from the southwest portion of Australia to the southeastern part. Bringing with them their silvopasture,aquaculture and dams. Granted,there were clashes with the locals,more than likely the ancestors of the Kaurna,who were rapidly subjugated with the survivors taking to the harsher inland to harass the victors. Over time,some new domesticated were found. One was the black swan.Swans are the largest of the waterfowl,and their corpses yield plenty of meat. They've also been traditionally reserved for royalty in Europe. But this isn't Europe and swans ain't taboo here. They're kept in the local dams,fed on reedmace and have their wings clipped to avoid migratory tendencies. The lace monitor also became a domesticate. Yes,they're a little venomous,but being large lizards with plenty of meat was incentive enough.
New crops added were golden rods another wattle. In addition to their trees a few certain vines began to gather attention;the purple apple-berry which was a good source of fruit, and the wombat berry. The murnong also known as the yam daisy was being planted more and more for it's tubers along with the milkmaids also noted for it's edible tubers. In addition,several shrubs such as the sweet apple-berry,common apple-berry,snowberry,native raspberry and native currant were being cultivated. One thing about Australian flora,they have an interesting variety of spices such as peppermint gum,strawberry gum,blue gum,river mint,native thyme,mountain pepper and dorrigo pepper all of which increasingly became cultivated which eventually resulted in an interesting cuisine.
Now that things were settling down, the Budj Bim People began to get philosophic and more aesthetic.
One thing I'd like to do in Australia is some metallurgy. I mean,this is one mineral rich island continent! With more prosperity and the beginnings of civilization,maybe some could make use of certain metals. Copper was well known throughout the Neolithic and paved the way for bronze. For architecture,probably something similar to what was already common throughout Oceania. A form of longhouse tho heavily carved and ornate to show off their wealth. And maybe,they begin to build walls since they do have enemies. Eventually,since they are close to the coast,I'd like for them to develop sea-worthy canoes to reach Tasmania.
As for the northern part of Australia,they have domesticates as well. Being so close to New Guinea might actually help them in some ways. Halfway contemplating some New Guinea swine maybe six sows and two boars escape in Australia. Be hell on several marsupial species,but if the North Australians had contact with New Guineans,then maybe they can figure out to tame them. Two more species that could potentially be introduced via New Guinea are the rusa deer and the woolly rat. The woolly rat is a large fairly docile and mostly herbivorous rodent. Deer and antelope can be domesticated. The reindeer is prime proof of that and there is the nilgai or blue bull which is cross fertile with cattle. I'd like for there to be more interaction with Indonesia as a whole.
Also considering breeding the New Guinea Singing dog to the Dingo.
I don't know exactly how domesticable marsupials and monotremes can be. I know that sugar gliders are popular pets and that the quoll is friendly,but no on koalas and wombats. If anyone has more data on potential domesticates among marsupials and monotremes,than let me know.
I thought about the mountain goat,but the people capturing them for domestication would have to be the nimblest,most sure-footed people on the planet!
Remember though, domestication usually isn't about capturing and caging. In the case of prey species, it was usually done by management of them, which is really just modified hunting behavior. Cull the more aggressive members of the herd (generally males), and let the female live to breed, which eventually develops into domestic forms. Even herding practice is really just modified hunting behavior, dogs use the exact same stances and behaviors to drive a herd as wolves do to hunt them. The difference is one is human directed management. Fencing is not common in the neolithic, and even today in some parts of the world it still isn't used because you can manage herds perfectly well just with the help of dogs.
Australia 4
The Budj Bim People have successfully achieved dominance in South Australia and have a good amount of prosperity due to their crops and livestock. The silvopasture they started has also been beneficial not just for their domesticates,but for non-domesticates as well.
Cuisine= Due to the many spices they cultivated as well as the bird and lizard meat,Budj Bim cuisine is full of flavor. The preferred manner of cooking is in an earth oven with spices and seed ground up in large querns. The bush bread is still favored as a travel food. A tea culture based on the native teas has started and cooks are experimenting.
Spirituality=I'm not going too far from the Dreamtime spirituality or their cryptids. But now dreams might be interpreted different or used to determine the future. Fortune telling is common worldwide after all and'll be no different here. Women are regarded as more attuned to the spirits,but meditation is common. Some have taken to fire-walking or other means of risk-taking. Animal sacrifices do take place around certain times of the year,but human sacrifice is discouraged...........except in the case of disaster.
Is there a caste system? Hard to say. The locals of Southeast Australia were subjugated and their descendants are more or less slaves of the Budj Bim People,but it's not always hereditary. Many can buy their freedom.
Metallurgy= Copper is discovered about 6'000 years ago and rapidly displaces flint-knappers. Lariats of some sort become a common tool/weapon for the emu herders. The domestication of the lace monitor has an extra benefit with their venom and the Budj Bim People begin to experiment with various poisons they can use against their enemies. And they've gotten used to boulders as defense.
Garb=They are becoming more decorative with their clothing. The various feathers are used in making cloaks worn by both genders and they enjoy white tattoos/body art to stand out against their dark skin. Shells become incorporated into their jewelry as well.
There is some rivalry and politics going on. Each village is more or less autonomous with a Big Man (Headman) as leader. They're more or less loosely allied and work together against common foes. But,there are feuds and rivalries over inheritance. Which is why younger sons leave from time to time. Which is why when they have coroborees,there is generally a meeting of elders from all over to work it out.
Trade=They will initiate trade with the Truwanna (Tasmania)islanders to the south. What the Truwanna islanders have to offer are muttonbirds,seal meat and fur. In turn they get dingoes and learn how to herd the dwarf emus. Yes,the thylacine survives to present day. Some of the Truwanna take to piracy or hiring out as mercenaries as a result.
Disease=As stated,I'm not good with imagining disease. However,there is a form of avian flu carried by the black swan and transfers to the Budj Bim People. It is infectious and there are death among the small children and elderly,but a general immunity comes around. Since there is interaction between the Budj Bim People and Truwanna Islands,the avian flu gets them as well,but they too develop a form of immunity.
That's it for now regarding South Australia. North Australia is next and yes they do interact with New Guineans and Indonesians. New Zealand is later,since the Maori were only in New Zealand for a thousand years. In fact they come after the Americas and possibly around the time of the Malagasy.
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OK,before I tackle North Australia,here's some definite domesticates for the Americas
Ocelots. They were kept by Mesoamerican tribes,figure into the many mythologies and historically ranged as far north and east as Arkansas. They also seem to adapt well to captivity somewhat. At least better than the bobcat. This makes them suitable verminators. Unsure about the jaguarundi which is equal in size,but the ocelot is in.
Grey foxes are in as well. They're not really vulpine,but more of a very basal canine. Native Californians did seem to have kept them and I like them being the only canid to climb trees.
Peccaries,pudus,muskox and their temperate kin the shrubox,bighorn sheep and mountain goats are all in as domesticated Artiodactyls. The reindeer will be imported from Siberia. Unsure about the moose,but they are being farmed now. Feel same way about pronghorns.
Rheas were already set to be domesticated. I feel most ratites are suited for it anyway. Passenger pigeon will also be domesticated,not only for their meet,but also their speed. Other birds are prairie chickens,curassows,chachalas and guans. Tinamous might also be considered.
The rodents I intend for domestication are of the Caviomorph family. The smallest are rabbit sized with some extinct members getting to be the size of cattle,herbivorous and fairly docile. Capybaras,agoutis,pacas,pacaranas,chinchillas and hutias are all domesticated and spread to North America. Depending on when they went extinct,I might allow for the giant hutia and giant pacarana to survive as domesticates.
The Eastern Agriculture Complex gets more focus. Little barley,goosefoot,erect knotweed,maygrass and marsh elder are not pushed aside,but get use in regions too cold for maize.
I'm definitely considering the prairie turnip and little breadroot as domesticates. Would like to see more cultivation of the pinyon and mesquite. If anyone knows of anymore potential plants for domestication,let me know.
The tapir might be tamed similar to the Asian elephant,but I'm still unsure on full domestication.
Certain zorros or South American foxes(not really vulpine) will see domestication like with the warrah. Falkland Island Wolf definitely!