Basic subsistence characteristics

    1. reliance upon domesticated animal herds
    2. dietary base is usually heavily dependent upon milk, animals are seldom slaughtered.
    3. main forms: cattle and sheep, also a few systems based on camels (Tuareg), reindeer (Sami).
    4. pastoral groups often herd more than one species
    5. extensive forms of production utilizing natural pastures without cultivation of fodder crops
    6. nomadism - herds are moved from pasture to pasture as they exhaust grasses or seasons change
    7. subsistence strategy focuses on maintaining herd sizes above (and below) optimal limits
        • too few animals will not included enough breeding stock to replentish the herd
        • too many are hard to control and track
    8. animal resources are supplemented by agriculture, either through complementary farming or trade with farming communities
Yoruk Sheep herder - Turkey

Nuer cattle herders - Sudan

Tuareg camel herders - Chad

Sami reindeer herders - Norway

Next: Socio-cultural features