Hunting with Dogs among the San in the Central Kalahari

Among the Central Kalahari San, who inhabit the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in Botswana, hunting with spears and dogs was, in the 1960s, secondary to hunting with bows and arrows or trapping. In recent years, however, hunting with bows and arrows has declined and hunting with dogs has become more common. Dogs play an important role when the San hunt large antelopes with spears, or medium-sized animals with sticks. Success depends on the hunter’s skill in identifying footprints and on his timing in throwing the spear, as well as on the chasing and fighting ability of the dog. The game is shared among the owners of the dogs participating in the hunt. Three factors account for the increase in dog hunting. Firstly, the number of dogs has increased dramatically. Secondly, dog hunting does not require hunters to learn new skills, and is convenient for the San, who travel long distances on foot. Thirdly, hunting with dogs is suited to such small and medium-sized animals as jackals, wild cats and gemsboks, whose hides and dried meat have become an important source of cash in a developing commercial economy. The author lived in the Kade area of Ghantsi district in Botswana for almost eleven months between 1987 and 1989. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.

Title: Hunting with Dogs among the San in the Central Kalahari
Author: Ikeya, Kazunobu
Year: 1994
Periodical: African Study Monographs
Volume: 15
Issue: 3
Period: November
Pages: 119-134
Language: English
Geographic term: Botswana
External link: http://jambo.africa.kyoto-u.ac.jp/kiroku/asm_normal/abstracts/pdf/ASM%20%20Vol.15%20No.3%201994/Kazunobu%20IKEYA.pdf
Abstract: Among the Central Kalahari San, who inhabit the Central Kalahari Game Reserve in Botswana, hunting with spears and dogs was, in the 1960s, secondary to hunting with bows and arrows or trapping. In recent years, however, hunting with bows and arrows has declined and hunting with dogs has become more common. Dogs play an important role when the San hunt large antelopes with spears, or medium-sized animals with sticks. Success depends on the hunter’s skill in identifying footprints and on his timing in throwing the spear, as well as on the chasing and fighting ability of the dog. The game is shared among the owners of the dogs participating in the hunt. Three factors account for the increase in dog hunting. Firstly, the number of dogs has increased dramatically. Secondly, dog hunting does not require hunters to learn new skills, and is convenient for the San, who travel long distances on foot. Thirdly, hunting with dogs is suited to such small and medium-sized animals as jackals, wild cats and gemsboks, whose hides and dried meat have become an important source of cash in a developing commercial economy. The author lived in the Kade area of Ghantsi district in Botswana for almost eleven months between 1987 and 1989. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum.