The Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau are an indigenous people of Brazil,[3] living in the state of Rondônia.

Total population
115 (2010)[1]
Regions with significant populations
 Brazil ( Rondônia)
Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau language,[2] Uru-Pa-In language

They live in six villages on the borders of Terra Indigena Uru-Eu-Uaw-Uaw, which is shared by three sub-groups, the Amondawa, Jupaú, and Uru Pa In, as well as the Jurureí, Parakua, and two uncontacted tribes whose names are not known.[4]


They are also known as the Amondauas, Bocas-negras, Bocas-pretas, Cabeça-vermelha, Cautários, Sotérios, Urupain,[1] as well as Jupaú, Black-Mouths, Red-Heads, Urueu-Wau-Wau.[5]


The Uru-Eu-Uaw-Uaw came into contact with non-Natives, specifically the National Indian Foundation (FUNAI) in 1981,[5] which was followed by a loss of population. In 1981, there were 250 Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau people, but only 89 in 1993. Diseases and violent attacks by outsiders have killed them. Rubber harvesters fought FUNAI's outlines of Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau lands. In 1991, one of the world's largest known tin deposits was discovered in Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau lands.[5]

After 1993 their population began increasing again.[4] The Terra Indigena Uru-Eu-Uaw-Uaw was established by the Brazilian government to protect the tribes and only Indians can legally live in the indigenous territory; however, loggers and miners have regularly invaded their lands.[6] Missionaries are active among the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau, and an NGO called Kanindé is trying to fight outside influences and assimilationists on the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau.[5]


The Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau speak the Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau language, a Tupi–Guarani language, Subgroup IV.[5] The language is also known as Uru-Eu-Uau-Uau, Eru-Eu-Wau-Wau, Ureuwawau, or Kagwahiva, and its ISO 639-3 language code is "urz".[2]


The Uru-Eu-Uaw-Uaw are hunter-gatherers. They use a poison made from tree bark on their arrows when hunting tapir and other game. They are known for their distinctive tattoos around their mouths made from genipapo, a black vegetal dye.[6]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b "Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau: Introduction." Povos Indígenas no Brasil. (retrieved 26 April 2011)
  2. ^ a b "Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau." Ethnologue. (retrieved 26 April 2011)
  3. ^ Last Days of Eden: Rondônia's Urueu-Wau-Wau Indians Loren McIntyre, National Geographic (December 1988), pp. 800-817 (retrieved 10 Aug 2016)
  4. ^ a b "Uru-Eu-Wau-Wau: Identification and Demography." Povos Indígenas no Brasil. (retrieved 26 April 2011)
  5. ^ a b c d e "Urueu-Wau-Wau." World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples. (retrieved 22 May 2011)
  6. ^ a b "Massive Invasion of Isolated Indians' Land." Survival International. 12 Jan 2007 (retrieved 26 April 2011)

External linksEdit