Monday, July 4, 2011

Futu Manu

Futu Manu (Literally 'Fighting Chicken' in Tetum), commonly known as cockfighting, is a common bloodsport throughout Timor Leste, and indeed, South East Asia. Men of all ages gather daily at the markets where they bring their finest fighting cocks. The majestic beasts are trained for months at a time to improve the strength of their legs, and their ability to outperform their opponent. They are quiet costly (about $50 USD). A fight can last seconds and always ends in a dead chicken. The body is then plucked and eaten.
Quiet often I have been stopped in the streets by men wanting me to photograph them with their prized fighting cock. Once the cock goes undefeated for two or three fights, it develops a reputation and can become quiet valuable.

Before the fight, small knifes are tied to the cock's legs.

Owner ties knives to the cocks legs.

Man betting on a cockfight.

The dying animal bleeds out. Although to many, it seems brutal, the beast actually dies fairly quickly.

The dying cock is placed in an empty drum as to not injure itself while thrashing about. This animal was fairly badly injured and passed away quickly and painlessly.