What did indigenous people use to hunt?

What did indigenous people use to hunt?

Indigenous People Used Various Tools to Hunt

Humans have been hunting since the dawn of time, and the way they hunted varied great depending on their location and the creatures they were hunting. For Indigenous people, hunting provided access to both food and resources that were integral to their way of life. Here we explore the diverse tools and methods they used to hunt.


Indigenous people set traps to capture animals for food and fur. Some of these traps could be quite sophisticated, such as corrals, which would be combined with a net, rope or stake to limit the movement of the prey.


Using dogs to hunt was a common practice among Indigenous people for thousands of years. Dogs could be trained to help track, corner or even retrieve the prey.

Spears and Arrows

Spears and arrows have been used by Indigenous people for hunting since ancient times. They created a variety of weapons to match their particular prey, such as arrows with small blunt heads for capturing small birds and heavier spears with wider blades for larger animals.

Bows and Slings

Bows and slings were also used by Indigenous people to hunt, usually in combination with spears or arrows. Bows could be crafted to shoot arrows at significant distances, while slings were used to throw stones at animals.

Other Hunting Methods

Indigenous people also used:

  • Drives – Organized hunters would drive animals into an area where they would be easier to capture.
  • Blinds – These were shelters set up near watering holes or feeding grounds, making it easier to surprise the animals.
  • Snares – These were looped cables made of animal sinew that were used to catch small to medium-sized animals.
  • Poison arrows – These were crafted by combining the arrowheads with toxic plants and animal remains.

Indigenous people used a combination of these methods to hunt depending on the animal and the environment. While modern hunting techniques have advanced widely, these time-honoured traditions are still remembered among indigenous communities around the world.

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