Monday, May 05, 2008

Parrots and Taino

Did You Know - The ancient Taino people developed an ingenious and sophisticated way of trapping certain birds especially parrots. To capture the birds, children would wear a specially woven hat made from palm tree material, and then hide in selected trees. Once in the tree, the children would also coat various branches with a special sticky resin. Finally, for this trap to be successful the child hunter would take along live parrot whose squawks would attract other birds to the tree. Once landing in the trees, the parrots would become stuck to the resin and easily captured by the young Taino hunters. Parrots were favored among community members because of their beauty and the ability to be domesticated. Some Taino terms for parrots include Kaika, Paraka, and Higuaka. – UCTP Taino News © 2008

1 comment:

Michael said...

As children growing up in Jamaica we knew how to use the breadfruit tree resin to place on a dried branch that was extended above the tree line on a bamboo pole in order to entrap birds. The use of tamed parrots to lure wild parrots and parakeets is also known in Jamaica. Now I know that these methods are most likely Taino retentions.
Michael Auld