The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

manuscript - Christoph von Furer-Haimendorf, Naga diary five

caption: animal traps
medium: diaries
ethnicgroup: Konyak
location: Wakching
date: 17.4.1937
person: Furer-Haimendorf
date: 1.4.1937-26.6.1937
note: translated from german by Dr Ruth Barnes
person: School of Oriental and African Studies Library, London
text: Wakching 17/4/1937
text: Again and again I discover gaps in my material or entire topics which I have not discussed in detail. Today I talked about animal traps with the gaonburas. The Konyak are great trappers and even approach a tiger with a trap. They do not know the tiger drive as the Ao do it (57) but if a tiger has killed a domestic animal they will build a cage trap nearby and in it put a part of the killed animal or other meat as a bait. By touching the bait a simple mechanism is activated and the gate to the trap goes down. They then kill the tiger with spears. Chinyang remembers one instance where a tiger ate from a corpse on a corpse platform. The remaining parts of the corpse were used as bait and the tiger was finally killed.
text: On the other hand wild pigs, and especially mothers with their young, are chased by surrounding them for which all tracks leading out of the jungle area are covered with eggshell which supposedly keeps the pigs in. The traps are basically the same as those used by other Naga tribes. The illustration of the Lakher traps in Parry's book are also recognised by the gaonburas and to most of them they said that they had them as well. Only catapults seem to be lacking. For fishing they use the poisonous fruits from three different trees.