They hunted deer, ducks, rabbits and other animals. In the coastal areas or near large lakes, tribes would specialize in fishing. They often used spears or nets to catch fish. In the north, some Native Americans would ice fish.
Whether they were farming tribes or not, most Native American tribes had very meat-heavy diets. Favorite meats included buffalo, elk, caribou, deer, and rabbit; salmon and other fish; ducks, geese, turkeys and other birds; clams and other shellfish; and marine mammals like seals or even whales.
The men from the tribe would go out on hunts to get large game like deer, moose, caribou, elk, buffalo, and bear as well as small game like rabbits, beaver, and muskrat. They would also hunt turkey, ducks and other fowl. Tribes that lived along the coasts or near large bodies of water would specialize in fishing.
The buffalo jump and the buffalo impound commonly represent two primary group hunting methods used by the Plains Indians. A buffalo jump entailed luring a herd of bison over a cliff or high hill causing them to fall to their death.
Buffalos were the most useful and important animals Native Americans used. They didn’t have leftovers if they had caught a buffalo. However, Native Americans didn’t only use buffalos. They also used turtles, eagles, beavers, antelopes, bears, and horses.
History. Pre-Columbian Native Americans fermented starchy seeds and roots as well as fruits from both wild and domesticated plants. Among the most common are drinks made from fermented corn, agave, and manioc.
Sioux warriors used bows and arrows, spears, war clubs, and buffalo-hide shields. Here is a website with pictures and information about Sioux Indian weapons. Hunters also used snares, and when Lakota or Dakota men hunted buffalo, they often set controlled fires to herd the animals into traps or over cliffs.
Woodland and northern First Nations used moose, deer or caribou skin. Plains First Nations mostly used light animal skins, such as buffalo, antelope, elk or deer.
Traditional hunting methods include bow hunting and rifle hunting. Traditional hunting methods require the hunter to be in open terrain where animals aren’t fenced, lured with bait or shot from great distances.
The buffalo is the very sources of life for the plains Indians. From the buffalo they got meat for food, skins for tipis, fur for robes, and anything else was for tools and things needed for everyday life. Like the bones and horns were used to make hoes, digging sticks, hide working tools, cups, and spoons.
They used all the parts of the animal and let nothing go to waste, and the buffalo served as their main sources of food, shelter and clothing. The buffalo was also a key part of ceremonial and spiritual events. “The Lakota believed the buffalo provided everything they needed,” Brazell said.
Before the coming of the horse, buffalo were hunted using either a buffalo jump or a corral. The corral or impound method involved building a timber corral and enticing the buffalo into it so that they could be killed. The Plains Cree used the impound for their winter buffalo hunt.
Dogs were Native American’s first domesticated animal thousands of years before the arrival of the European horse. Indians assiduously raised, bred and trained their dogs to protect families, to hunt, to herd, to haul, and to provide companionship.
Indians would mostly used bows and arrows for hunting game when the U.S. would use their guns. In the early life people were using stone points. But now they have thought of bows and arrows. Indians did not just use bows and arrows they would also use guns, but bows and arrows were the most important to them.
They hunted big game like buffalo, elk, deer, and antelope or small game like rabbits. The Plains Indian tribes wanted guns, but did not use them while hunting buffalo from horseback. Their shots were more accurate with a bow and arrow or a lance. The Plains Indians had become a horse and bison culture by the 1800’s.