Mairasi Tribe in West Papua You Need to Know

mairasi tribe

West Papua has very beautiful sea waters, including Kaimana sea waters. Most tourists come to the Kaimana area, West Papua for sea exploration. But did you know that a tribe whose culture is worth knowing about is called the Mairasi tribe?

The Mairasi tribe is a West Papua tribe and the largest indigenous tribe in the Kaimana district. The Mairasi tribe itself has spread to several areas, including the Kaimana District, Teluk Aguni District, and Wasior District.

Get to Know The Mairasi Tribe

Get to Know The Mairasi Tribe

The Mairasi tribe was originally a migrant tribe from Numfor Island in the coastal area of ‚Äč‚ÄčTeluk Wondama Regency. Until now, several families of the Mairasi tribe still occupy Wondoma Bay.

At first, the Mairasi tribe fulfilled their needs by hunting and gardening. However, after moving to coastal areas, they began to work as fishermen. Even so, the hunting habit is still carried out by the Mairasi tribe.

Mairasi language is the daily language used by the Mairasi tribe both in the hinterland and on the coast of Kaimana. Even if there is a difference, it is only from the dialect.

Mairasi Tribe Hunting Techniques

Get to Know The Mairasi Tribe

Almost all tribes in West Papua have hunting habits. Something is interesting when the Mairasi tribe hunts, namely, accompanied by atowan dogs. This atowan dog will later become an assistant to help chase hunted animals.

In the hunting tradition, the division of tasks has usually been implemented. The men are in charge of hunting activities, while the women are the ones who will process the hunted animals into food for the family.

Traditional weapons used for hunting are usually arrows (jawasi). The arrow shafts are usually made of bamboo, which is used to hunt various birds. Besides that, there is also a traditional sinomo knife used for cutting and made of bamboo.

Traditional Leadership of the Mairasi Tribe

The Mairasi tribe, according to history in 1812 had three types of traditional leadership, namely war leaders (quasi), leaders of religious ceremonies (jarere), and traditional leaders (barneverai).

Barneverai is the chief of the Mairasi tribe who help solve problems either in the form of violations of customs or norms in society. Traditional leaders are parents chosen by the Mairasi tribe because of their understanding of the culture of the Mairasi tribe itself.

Mairasi Tribe Dowry

The dowry is sacred for the Mairasi tribe before carrying out the wedding ritual. Usually, the parents of the groom and the bridegroom visit relatives who live in several villages to tell their child’s dowry.

Then, the dowry treasure is collected from the groom’s relatives. The dowry treasures are usually porcelain dishes, silver earrings, and so on.

Traditional Skills

Traditional Skills

The Mairasi tribe has traditional skills, namely making noken or woven bags. There are two types of noken from Mairasi tribe, Jawi and Jar’i. Jawi is a woven noken made of bark used to collect garden produce.

Jar’i is a noken woven from pandan leaves by women of the Mairasi tribe. It can also be used to carry garden produce and so on.

Traditional Clothing

The traditional dress worn by Mairasi tribal women is called fabaesar. The material used is made of crushed bark. The types of wood used are jombisi and jobo airatere.

Meanwhile, the men of the Mairasi tribe wear traditional clothing called anggama which looks like a loincloth. The basic material used is also made of crushed bark.

Those are some explanations about the Mairasi tribe in Kaimana. Hopefully, it can add insight into the life of the people of eastern Indonesia, especially in West Papua