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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Hambukushu as Cattle Men
Author:Larson, Thomas J.ISNI
Periodical:South African Journal of Ethnology
Geographic term:Botswana
animal husbandry
Peoples of Africa (Ethnic Groups)
Abstract:The author explains why the Hambukushu had few cattle when they arrived in Ngamiland (Botswana) towards the beginning of the nineteenth century. Cattleherding and the use of milk and meat as supplementary sources of food have, however, increased in importance with time. Bovines are the main repository of one's wealth, can readily be sold for cash, and can also be used for barter. The present herd of the Hambukushu has been built up since 1896, when the rinderpest decimated almost all livestock. Cattle are not subject to seasonal redistribution as the grazing on the flood plain and adjacent bush enable the owner to keep them permanently in the same kraal. No fodder crops are cultivated. In the past, cattle were normally inherited by the deceased's matrilineal successor. Today the Tawana custom of inheritance from father to son is increasingly adopted. The author gives particulars of the main wild grasses and leaves suitable for grazing and of the most important recurrent cattle diseases prevalent in the area. Bibliogr., sum. also in Afrikaans.