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KAMORO ECOLOGY - CHAPTER III.

© Kal Muller, 2004. (Bahasa Indonesia)


01. In the mornings, groups of women set out to gather natural products from the mangroves. Sometimes they are accompanied by a husband or a male relative but usually the ladies go on their own. Firewood, crustaceans and mollusks are the main products of the mangrove 'supermarket'.

02. Just outside of Atuka Village, the island's central mountain range looms in the haze of a clear day. The steep-sided mountains rise from the alluvial plain some 40 to 50 km. north of Atuka. Few Kamoro venture even into the foothills as their resource base from the sea, mangroves and tropical rain forest is plentiful.

03. A buyer in Atuka supports quite a large cottage industry making simple brooms from coconut frond mid-ribs. These are called sapu (broom) lidi (palm-frond mid-rib) in Indonesian. The buyer pays Rp. 500 for each broom and sells them in Timika for Rp. 1,000. Coconuts are bought in villages at Rp. 500 and sold wholesale in Timika fro Rp. 1,000 to 1,500.

04. Boys dressed in new, flashy clothes for a karapao or initiation ceremony in the village of Atuka. The feathers are from the Greater Bird of Paradise, hunted by the Kamoro.

05. The Brown Booby, Sula leucogaster, is a rare visitor to the Kamoro shores of the Arafura Sea. This one was caught on the beach and, like all other larger birds, destined for a meal.

06. Shelters on the beach near Atuka Village offer but minimal protection from the elements. There are excellent fishing grounds nearby. Seldom is there any objection from the Atuka land-owners as they have ties of kinship and friendship with the Kamoro who come here to 'kapiri kame'.




  © Copyright UNIPA - ANU - UNCEN PapuaWeb Project, 2004.

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