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NEWSFILE: BHMs

OH YEAH?

This news service story of 29 April 1998, was posted on the Internet where it attracted a fair amount of derision:

"An Abominable Interval, What: English wildlife biologist Dr. Shaun Wilkins-Doel announced that this weekend marks the start of the two-week mating season for the Yeti he's studying in Nepal. Yeti rutting supposedly occurs every seven years.".

Who this geezer is and how he came to his remarkable conclusions we have no idea!

INDIAN SUMMER

RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil (AP) - Brazilian authorities discovered a tribe of hunters living in near-inaccessible reaches of Brazil's Amazon rain forest. "We didn't know they existed,'' said Sydney Possuelo, who heads the Federal Indian Bureau's Department of Isolated Indians. "We ran into them by accident," Possuelo said in a telephone interview that he first encountered the tribe's 12-15 huts two months ago while flying over Acre state, near Brazil's western border with Peru. However, the discovery wasn't made public until Sunday, when reported by the nation's leading newsmagazine, Veja.

Very little is known about the tribe's 200 members, its customs, its language, even its name. Unlike most Amazon Indian groups, it doesn't live in jungle clearings but deep beneath the forest canopy. 'Trying to find them is like looking for a needle in a haystack,' said Possuelo. 'That explains why it took so long to discover them.' The tribe lives in one of the Amazon's most isolated regions, about 2,000 miles northwest of Rio de Janiero. The closest road is 80 miles away and dense jungle makes vehicle travel impossible. Rivers are seldom navigated. Federal Indian agents began looking for a tribe after three settlers in the area were killed. Authorities suspect the tribesmen killed them to protect their food supply, Possuelo said. To prevent further clashes, Possuelo said he has asked officials to settle the farmers elsewhere and prevent outsiders from entering the Indians' territory. 'Now that we have discovered them, we can't turn our backs,' Possuelo said. 'If we do, they will certainly disappear.' Estimates of the number of Indians in Brazil when Europeans first arrived vary from 1 million to 11 million. Some 300,000 remain today in 270 tribes as war, slavery, starvation and disease took their toll. Authorities say about 55 tribes live in unexplored pockets of the Amazon and have yet to be contacted. Meanwhile, authorities say gold miners, loggers, settlers, and poachers are pressing into uncharted areas of the rain forest, endangering the remaining indigenous groups, including the 23,000-member Yanomami, the world's largest Stone Age tribe.

EDITORIAL COMMENT: New tribes are like buses - not a sign of one for ages and then they all turn up at once. No sooner had we dealt with the above story, we then learn that, from The Amazon, somewhere in the teeming metropolis, erm rainforest...:

JOHNNY FOREIGNER IS A RUM COVE

JAKARTA (Reuters) - Indonesian officials have found two new tribes in the remote Irian Jaya province who communicate usingsign language, the official Antara news agency reported onThursday. The report from the provincial capital Jayapura said that fieldofficers of the social affairs office had recently discovered the twonomadic tribes living near the Mamberamo river area, about 2,400 miles east of Jakarta. The office's head for social welfare, Onesimus Y Ramandey, saidmembers of the Vahudate and the Aukedate tribes are tall, havedark skin and curly hair and speak using sign language. He said they roam the areas between Waropen Atas sub-district,Yapen Waropen district and the edge of the Mamberamo river in Jayapura district which borders with the Nabire, Puncak Jaya andJayawijaya districts. Based on a preliminary survey, the Vahudate tribe has 20 familiesand the Aukedate tribe 33 families, he said. Irian Jaya, with its high m ountains, steep hills and deep valleys has hundreds of distinct tribal groups speaking up to 800 dialects with many still living far from the reach of government in a near Stone Age existence. New tribes are "discovered" almost every year.

EDITOR`S COMMENT: the comment 'Caveat Lector' should be borne in mind about parts of the above news story especially the bit about them having no verbal form of communication...