Age-dependency in hunting ability among the Ache of eastern Paraguay

J Hum Evol. 2002 Jun;42(6):639-57. doi: 10.1006/jhev.2001.0541.


This paper examines changes in hunting ability across the lifespan for the Ache of eastern Paraguay. Hunting ability is decomposed into two components-finding prey and probability of kill upon encounter- and analyzed for important prey species. Results support the argument that skill acquisition is an important aspect of the human foraging niche with hunting outcome variables reaching peaks surprisingly late in life, significantly after peaks in strength. The implications of this study are important for modeling the role of the human foraging niche in the co-evolution of various outstanding human life history characteristics such as large brains, long lifespans, and extended juvenile periods.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Animals
  • Anthropology, Cultural*
  • Anthropology, Physical
  • Child
  • Dietary Proteins
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Indians, South American*
  • Life Change Events*
  • Male
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Paraguay
  • Predatory Behavior*


  • Dietary Proteins