Rare aerial glimpse of isolated Indians of the upper Humaitá (Brazil), body art, weapons, and malocas (communal huts)

In December 2016 photographer Ricardo Stuckert was on assignment in the Brazilian state of Acre photographing indigenous tribes across all of Brazil.  While Stuckert was on a helicopter flight with José Carlos Meirelles from Brazil’s indigenous affairs agency, Fundação Nacional do Índio (FUNAI) to visit Jordão near the border of Peru the helicopter encountered thunderstorms. These thunderstorms forced the pilot to make an unexpected detour which took them directly over an isolated settlement of thatched huts carved into the dense jungle.

The indigenous group that they flew over has no formal name as they live in near complete isolation from the rest of brazil, so they are referred to as the “isolated Indians of the upper Humaitá.”. "Isolated" is a key word in understanding this group though as they are not completely unaware of the outside world as evidenced by reported incidents of contact since 1910, including raids by them to gain access to steel hatchets and machetes. You can see clearly in one of Stuckert's images a man is wielding a steel machete. 

While I can understand a situation where a flight is diverted in a remote region and overflies a protected area the fact that this photographer and FUNAI representative then returned a few hours later to take more photographs my helicopter is a bit odd given the fact that this area is protected and the state of Acre (and FUNAI) have worked diligently to not allow contact to occur. 

Meirelles did make some new observations about this group noting that there is a far wider range of hair styles and body art than they had previously documented. 

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

 © Ricardo Stuckert

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

© Ricardo Stuckert

 

Scenic landscape in Acre (not related to Ricardo Stuckert's photos above)

 

State of Acre in Brazil 

 

See also: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/12/uncontacted-tribe-amazon-brazil-photos/ 

 

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