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Huaorani in the Ecuadorian Amazon

Listed under Traditional Cultures in Ecuador.

  • Photo of Huaorani in the Ecuadorian Amazon
  • Photo of Huaorani in the Ecuadorian Amazon
Photo of Huaorani in the Ecuadorian Amazon
Photo by flickr user fishbone1
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The Huaorani or Waorani are an indigenous population living in the Ecuadorian Amazon, near the Peruvian border. The Huaorani maintain a largely traditional lifestyle, at home in a jungle which provides them with food, medicine and shelter. Having lived in the area as semi-nomadic hunter-gatherers for at least a thousand years, the Huaorani were first contacted by missionaries in the late 1950s. The Huaorani have been adapting to the changes time has brought. Many groups relocated after Texaco was given permission to drill their ancestral land, while some fled deeper into the forest and still remain largely un-contacted. With oil companies threatening to destroy the natural environment -and Huaorani life along with it- many Huaorani have unified; the Nacionalidad Waorani del Ecuador, formerly ONHAE, serves to protect their interests. Ecotourism has recently been adopted as a way for the Huaorani to generate income, while preserving both their culture and the rainforest which they call home. Visit the Huaorani on a trip to the Yasuni National Park and surrounding Napo province and stay at the newly opened Huaorani Ecolodge.

Written by  Amber Due.

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