Two of the sixteen consonants, /ʙ̥, h/ occur infrequently. /ʙ̥/ only occurs in expressive words, or before the vowel /u/. /h/ only occurs after a coronal consonant, like /a/ or /u/. There is also a specially rare occurrence of two implosive consonants, /ɓ/ and /ɗ/.
The language is spoken by a people who includes tribes still uncontacted. They live mainly in three villages: Cachoeira Seca, Laranjal and Maia. However, the natives of the latter have switched to Portuguese, while 85 speakers still remain in Cachoeira Seca and 250 in Laranjal.
Linguist Isaac Costa de Souza studied the language and concluded some words were modified when used to talk to different animals. The table below shows some modified words used when speaking to a capuchin monkey.
|Normal word||Capuchin word||English gloss|
Different modifications are used according to the species of animal being addressed. The word ikpa, for example, might be modified as tɔkpa when addressing a dog, or as ĩkpã when addressing a howler monkey. Specific modifications may be used when talking to woodpeckers, tortoises, and coatis, among other animals.
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