Information about the Kamayura

The kamayura live in the Upper Xingu region along with Kiabi, Yudja and Suya tribes. The ways of life are quite similar despite having different languages. Their language is Tupi and the name �Kamayura� means �a raised platform to keep meat, pots and pans. They have always lived around lake Ipavu which is six kilometres from the Kuluene river


In 2002 there were 355 people which is a good recovery from an all time low of 94 people in 1954 due to the measles epidemic. The total population was 264 when adventurer Von Den Stein visited the area.

Description of Village

The Kamayura village comprises of a round roof that is decorated with sape grass and the �house of the flutes� contain important flute (jakui) instruments that can only be played by the men. In front of that house there is a meeting area where the men discuss fishing trips or plan festivals and so on.

The food is generally fish, beiju, porridge, pepper and bananas. The house is generally dark and is where the women and children dwell. The rainforest surround the entire village and private gardens can also be found.


The Kamayura elders claim that their ancestors came from the far north of the park. They migrated to the present location after having several conflicts with the Suya and Yudja peoples. By 1946 the tribes were affected by occasional contacts with European adventurers such as the Vilas brothers. The place was turned into a national park in 1961 to prevent further intrusions and spread of deadly epidemics to locals.

Organisation in their society

The Kamayura society is comprised of several villages with a group off brothers being the owner of each household. They decide what tasks and productive activities should be conducted each day by its members. After marriage the husband moves and lives in the wife�s parents� house. Strong alliances can be established through marriages.

Both genders are separately shortly after puberty. The boys are taught how to hunt for food with an arrow, do hard labour, and create a basket. Wrestling is done daily which strengthens their muscles. They are also trained in combat and taught leadership skills so they are able to look after their own families later on. This segregation lasts for up to five years before returning.

The teenage girls during seclusion must learn how to weave mats, and perform many basic everyday household duties. After a few years she is then ready for marriage and is given a new name and her ear is pierced. The girls also learn how to dance and look after the family.


Bows and arrows are made with high quality fabrics, Snail shell belts and pots made from ceramic are traded with other tribes. Fishnets, canoes, flutes and hammocks are made as specialised goods.

Hunting and gathering

Birds and animals are hunted in the rainforest while wild berries are gathered as the main food suplement. An eagle can be a supplement for fish. Once gathered, honey is also produced.

The above includes excerpts from Wikipedia.org, the free encyclopedia:

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