The Mundari, also referred to as Mandari, are a small ethnic group and one of the Nilotic peoples, living north of the capital of Juba, South Sudan. Like other Nilotic tribes, they are verycattle-oriented and treasure their cattle more than anything else, and are said to sleep close to their most prized cow. Their cattle serve as food, a form of currency, and a mark of status. I found living with the tribe for three days an exceptional experience. The cattle are treated like members of the family and are well looked after. Ash from burnt cow dung is applied not only to the Mundari themselves but also on their cattle. It acts as a natural antiseptic, mosquito repellent and protects the skin from the scorching sun. The Mundari farm has a breed of domestic cattle called Ankole-Watusi, which is characterized by very large, curved horns and is also known as “the cattle of kings.” These cows grow up to eight feet tall and are worth as much as $5000 each.
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