Our understanding of the Later Stone Age on the Greater Mapungubwe Landscape has, until recently, been focused on specific forager camp types, namely shelters. This does not place significance on the range and variability of forager expressions distributed across the landscape. In this region expanding our approach to forager studies is especially important because they partook in the development of the Mapungubwe state between AD 900 and 1300, altering their cultural behavior. Foragers engaged and adapted to the changing social and cultural environment present on the landscape and shifted their settlement patterns, cultural signatures and material remains. Cultural change is expressed as a mosaic across the region with differences such as the production of specific tool types or activity patterns noted between sites. Single site analysis therefore fails to give a comprehensive insight into changing forager lifeways.
Parts of the landscape have seen considerable attention and research, yet other important portions remain unstudied. For example, the Motloutse/Limpopo confluence area has seen little research despite being rich in archaeological material and having a number of known sites in this region. It also lies between van Doornum's (2005) and Forssman's (2014) doctoral research areas and may demonstrate a linkage between these areas. To asses this, a landscape approach is utilised in this study in which all archaeological traces distributed across the study region were considered. This will provide important data that may or may not relate to these other two research areas. However, the primary focus in this research was forager and farmer sites and specifically sites that contained mixed forager-farmer assemblages. Euphorbia Kop, a K2 site with a mixed forager-farmer assemblage was selected for excavation through the survey, in order to show contemporaneity between the two cultural signatures. The excavations revealed that foragers moved into the settlement around c. AD 1000. It is also shown that the forager and farmer sequence at the site is contemporaneous with other mixed forager-farmer settlements in the region, but Euphorbia Kop provided the first secure dates demonstrating this settlement shift.
By implementing a landscape study, a combination of multiple and disparate archaeologies were examined, thus, better contextualizing the multi-cultural nature of the landscape and assisting in the chronological and cultural placement of Euphorbia Kop into this sequence. This research also links forager studies in the Northern Tuli, Botswana, and northern South Africa creating a more detailed picture of forager settlement across the Greater Mapungubwe Landscape. Therefore, it provides a more holistic understanding of the cultural sequence and spatial change on the landscape and the phases of forager-farmer interaction that occurred post AD 900.