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History of Camel Wrestling in Turkey

Orhan Yilmaz.

During thousands of years of Turkish History, camels were always important in their life. In the past camels were used as transport, pack, ride, war, food, and sport animal by Turks. After industrialization and modernization since 20th century, camel lost their importance and nowadays they are only a sport and tourism material in Turkey. Hence the camel population in Turkey decreased in number of about 1.000 recently. The camel population is mostly used for camel wrestling events in West Anatolia. The camel wrestling events are organized about in 60-70 places annually during winter season. Wrestling events are on Sundays and followed by not only men spectators but also women and children. Because of this side, camel wrestling events is a family sport. Although camel wrestling equipment, accessories, ornaments, wages of take carers, transport for wrestling from city to city, accommodation, catering are quite expensive, camel owners are not so rich people, but low or middle income people. Hence, those organizations and camel owners should be supported by the state more in order to survive this traditional event.

Key words: Camelus dromedary;Camelusbactrianus;genetic resource;native breed;sport

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