The traditional domain of the Tsou tribe originally covered Tashan, Yushan and Alishan mountain area. In the past, Tsou warriors were renowned for their skill in using local materials to make bows and arrows. Over the years, however, hunting tools have undergone a massive transformation, and now this 100-year tradition is on the verge of being lost forever.
In the hope of preserving this traditional skill of the Tsou people, the Aboriginal Tribe Community College recently put together a course in bow and arrow making in Chashan Village. Course instructor Wang Qi-sheng (汪启圣) said that in traditional Tsou bow making, local bamboo and wood are both used to make the bows, although the use of bamboo is more common; arrows are made from “arrow bamboo,” from the Fargesia genus. He added that with little interest towards this art from the younger generation, without a positive initiative to provide classes, there is a real danger of losing the art forever. In addition to reviving this dying art, the courses also teach a whole host of other wilderness survival skills.
Reemergence of Tsou tribal bow