Agta - Settlements

Agta live in small and widely scattered camp groups throughout the forest. While 60 percent of Agta camps are in the forest (the other 40 percent are found on the coastal beaches of the Pacific Ocean, in open brushland, or in coconut groves), few camps are located directly under the forest canopy. Because of the Agta's fear of falling trees during storms, forest camps are usually situated in small open areas away from trees, such as on dry riverbeds or in small gardens. Camps are small, consisting of from three to seven kin-related nuclear households, with a mean average of six. A family will rarely reside in a camp of non-related kin. Agta move their camps often. In one study they were found to move, on average, every 18 days, and in another study every 29 days.

Housing. Agta may live in simple lean-tos, sleeping directly on the ground, or in small huts on stilts with a bamboo or palm wood floor about one meter above the ground, and with a thatch roof. Usually there are no side walls. Houses are very small, with an average floor size of only 3.9 square meters and a per capita floor space of only 1.2 square meters. Mean household size is 4.3 people. Most households (79 percent) are composed of simple nuclear families (parents and dependent children). Seventeen percent are of augmented nuclear families (e.g., with a cousin or grandparent present), and only 4 percent are composite (i.e., with two related couples sharing the same hearth).

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