Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

Cultures > Semi-arid North > Hunter-gatherers of the Semi-arid North


Two kinds of hunter-gatherer societies occupied this territory, each with a distinct subsistence economy: in the inland ravines and valleys groups based their diet on hunting of land animals, moving around frequently according to the seasons, traversing the mountains, transAndean valleys and the coast. In contrast, the groups that adapted to the Pacific coast consumed mollusks gathered near the shore, complemented by marine products: fish and other animals, which they hunted, and seaweed and coastal plants, which they gathered. They moved up and down the coast to prevent depleting resources in any one location, and in certain seasons journeyed inland in search of stones for toolmaking, firewood, and plants.