Fishing spears, callarr, mooting

Fishing spears had several parts, each made from different materials.

Resin - E.18439

Resin - E.18439
Photographer:  © Australian Museum

The First Fleet colonists described them as having shafts which were up to 6 m in length made from wood or the flowering stems of grass trees.The prongs were made of wood and were about 30 cm long. Pieces of bone, stingray spines, shell, fish teeth or hardwood were used to point and/or barb the prongs. Barbs made of kangaroo or wallaby bone were sharpened or ground to a point at one or both ends. Each of these parts was bound together with two-ply twine or unplied plant fibre which was coated with resin.

Dr Val Attenbrow , Principal Research Scientist
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Tags living, harbour, Aboriginal, people, coastal, sydney, fishing, spears,