The craziest hunting and fishing techniques in the world
Think giant catfish noodles and lure antelope with cardboard cutouts are far from the case? These unconventional tactics seem almost tame compared to the inventive, unusual and downright ingenious hunting and fishing techniques perfected throughout history. Whether passed down through the ages or developed in modern times, these original approaches to putting dinner on the table have one thing in common: they work.
1. Spider web kite fishing
Fishermen in the Solomon Islands collect spider webs that they turn into lures. Dragged across the surface of the water under the kites, these worm-shaped lures attract the blows of needlefish, whose narrow mouths make them impossible to catch with hooks. When the kite dives, the fishermen bring back the needlefish. The sturdy web catches the sharp teeth and rough scales of the fish – no hooks needed.
2. Intimidating Lions
Talk about brass: Members of the Dorobo tribe of Kenya employ a daring hunting tactic that is as simple as it is daring. After stalking the lions until they are killed, they move on to Nurturing Pride and claim a share. Bullying lions (kleptoparasitism, as the technique is called by biologists who documented several examples of the practice in the African Journal of Ecology in 2009) is just one of the ancient hunting methods still practiced by these hunters- modern gatherers in the grasslands of East Africa.
3. Atlantic puffins
Iceland is the only country in the world to allow hunting of Atlantic puffins, these black and white seabirds with red and yellow striped beaks that form large colonies along the country’s cliffs and coastal islands. The shotgun from boats can bring hunters from 50 to 100 birds per day. But a more traditional approach is called lundaveiðar. Hunters use long-handled triangular nets (háfur), often placed on precarious perches at the edge of cliffs, to sweep puffins from the sky. The long tradition of the Westman Islands in Iceland is believed to date back to the Viking Age. Unfortunately, the decrease in puffin numbers due to climate change and other human activities has resulted in season reductions in recent years.
4. Snooping rabbits
In England, where rabbits cause around £ 1million in agricultural damage annually, the animals are designated as pests under a 1954 law, which places a ‘continuing obligation on residents to kill or take any wild rabbit. living on their land. Trained ferrets are sent underground to chase rabbits from their burrows, and hunters can use dogs, shotguns, birds of prey, or staked nets through burrow exits and around the perimeter to bring the rabbits. to bag. British law requires rabbits caught in nets to be dispatched promptly and humanely.
5. Hunt cheetahs
Humans can’t outrun wild animals, but we can outlive them. Our early ancestors used persistent hunting – hunting fast game for hours in the heat of the day – to take advantage of human endurance and thermoregulation. Animals that easily overtake us in short sprints become too overheated and exhausted to continue for long distances, making them easy targets for arrows or spears.
Modern hunter-gatherers in the Kalahari Desert of Africa still use this technique to slaughter kudu, elk, gemsbok and other antelopes. Even the fastest land mammal is vulnerable to this tactic: In 2013, Kenyan villagers hunted down a pair of cheetahs that were killing their goats. The four-mile chase ended when the villagers captured the cheetahs alive and turned them over to the Kenya Wildlife Service.
6. Carp Skarping
Combine elements of wakeboarding, hand net and basketball with the Asian carp’s propensity to launch into the air to the sound of an approaching motorboat and you get the skarping. Its effectiveness as an invasive species control may be questionable, but its value as pure gonzo fun seems like a slam dunk.
7. Bison jumping
Colonel Robert Beverly, in his 18e-th century book The History and Present State of Virginia, in Four Parts, described how Native Americans disguised themselves as animal heads and skins to hunt down deer and buffalo. The white settlers adapted the tactic by training their horses “to walk gently beside the hunter, to protect him from the sight of the deer.” A century later, Merriweather Lewis documented a similar technique in the Blackfoot Bison Jump.
Dressed in a buffalo head and skin, the fastest and most daring member of a tribe positioned himself “at a suitable distance between a herd of buffaloes and a suitable precipice for this purpose”, Lewis writes in his Corps of Discovery Expedition journal. The remaining hunters then pursued the bison towards the decoy, who led the fleeing herd towards the cliff. The decoy would then jump over the edge into a crevice as the buffalo fell to death.
8. Cormorant fishing
Practitioners of this centuries-old ritual deploy trained cormorants, surface diving water birds renowned for their talents in catching fish. A string tied around the bird’s neck prevents it from swallowing large fish, allowing the handler to retrieve the bird and claim the catch. Once practiced in ancient Egypt and elsewhere in the world, cormorant fishing now survives mainly in China and Japan, where the world’s most famous cormorant fishing on the Nagara River in Gifu Prefecture continues unabated. interruption for 1,300 years. Here, the “usho” employed by the royal family of Japan wear traditional clothing and use flaming lamps to attract fish at night, with each fisherman handling up to a dozen cormorants at a time in a ballet show that attracts a large audience. number of tourists.
9. Trampled plaice
Plaice tramps walk barefoot in the waters of Scotland’s Solway Firth and other lowlands at ebb tide, when flatfish are buried on the bottom. Once they have trapped a fish underfoot, the wanderers pull it out of the water by hand. There is even a World Flounder-Tramping Championship, which started in the early 1970s in Palnackie and took place as recently as 2015. The competition awards prizes and attracts hundreds of trampers on a national holiday. particularly Scottish.
10. Small blowpipe game
Many native tribes around the world, including the Cherokee Indians of the southeastern United States, used hardwood or bamboo blowguns to propel clay pellets, darts, or seeds with enough force to bring down small game such as rabbits, birds and even monkeys.
Banned in California, Massachusetts, and the District of Columbia, blowguns are legal in most other competitive American blowgun sports leagues around the world, and a governing body, the International Fukiyado Association, hopes to someday make it. blowpipe an Olympic sport.