The nomadic Awa of the Amazon, considered as the world's most endangered tribe, survive by hunting armadillos, gathering wild honey, and foraging for babassu nuts, but the shrinking forest is further placing them at risk of losing their home.
The October 2018 issue of the National Geographic provides a closer look at the Awa tribe through several pictures that were taken of one of the last "uncontacted" tribes of the Amazon.
The Awa Tribe Of The Amazon
There are only 80 members of the Awa tribe, who reside in a reserve within the Amazon's Maranhao forest. They have lived their own way of life for centuries, still using bows and arrows as they hunt animals for food and as they move across the dense forest.
One of the images in this month's issue of the National Geographic shows an Awa hunter carrying a small deer on his back, likely the successful target of the bow and arrow that he is holding, followed by a hunting dog. Another image shows women and a baby from the Awa tribe taking a batch in a river.
Other images show an Awa woman butchering an armadillo, Awa hunters preparing to roast a porcupine, and an Awa boy with his pet monkey, as the tribe takes in baby monkeys if they kill a mother monkey for its meat.
The pictures show a piece of culture that is preserved with the lifestyle of the Awa tribe. Unfortunately, their way of living, and their own lives, are being threatened.
The Plight Of Amazon's Tribes
The Awa tribe lives in a part of the Amazon that is protected by the law. However, like the rest of the forest, the law means nothing for bandits and illegal loggers.
Like many uncontacted tribes of Amazon, such as the Chitonawa and the Yanomami, the Awa tribe is threatened by outsiders. About 75 percent of the original forest of the Maranhao is lost, with the most valuable timer remaining located in the protected Arariboia Indigenous Land. Timber extraction is illegal, but the Awa tribe has to keep running away from chainsaws and wildfires.
Hopefully, the Brazilian government gets bandits and illegal loggers under control to protect the Amazon and its human and animal inhabitants.