THE KAROWAI TREE TRIBES
The Korowai are direct neighbours of the Asmat and live north of the
Dairam Kabiur. Their habitat is limited by two large rivers and the mountains
in the north. Their swampy area is approximately 600 km² bid. In
this difficult area are living up to 2500 Korowai together in small family
groups. The Korowai are hunters and collectors. They nourish themselves
mainly with Sago which they won from Sago palms. They refer their main
protein food from the larvae of the Capricorn beetle.
The huntable animals represent their further base of live. There are
wild pigs; Casuar bird; birds; snakes; and small insects. Vegetable food
is also very important for them. Especially palm leaves, fern, breadfruit
and the red pandanae fruit.
The Korowai live together in small family groups in tree houses.
These tree houses can reach heights up to 50 meters, what however only
in exceptional cases the case is. The Korowai build such kind of tree
houses only if there is a dispute with the neighbours, or if they live
in an hostile area. Their normal tree houses are around 6 to 25 Meters
high. A Korowai family with up to eight persons live in such kind of houses.
But there is a strictly separatism between men and women. Their material
culture is exclusively limited to indispensable things of daily live as
well as decoration articles for the body.
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