||50,000 (Marshall 2000). 25,000 in the language area and 25,000 elsewhere (Marshall 2000).
||Southeast Maluku, north Tanimbar Islands of the Fordata, Larat, the Molu-Maru group, a few villages on the northwest part of Yamdena, and on Seira off the west coast of Yamdena. 30 villages. Also Saumlaki, Ambon, Tual, Sorong, Hayapura, Jakarta.
Indonesia, Southern Maluku
||Larat, Vai Fordata, Vai Tnebar, Vaidida
||Fordata-Larat I, Fordata-Larat II, Molo (Molo-Maru), Sera (Seira). Sera is most divergent dialect. Lexical similarity: 68% with Kei [kei].
||Austronesian, Malayo-Polynesian, Central-Eastern, Central Malayo-Polynesian, Southeast Maluku, Kei-Tanimbar, Kei-Fordata
||Former trade language of Tanimbar Islands and the language of ritual. Now not well known by speakers of the other 3 languages, except older people who use it for ritual. Vigorous. 2 villages of mainly Muslim Geser and Bugis use Fordata as L2. All domains. Positive attitude. Most also use Ambonese Malay [abs]; Some also use Standard Indonesian [ind].
||Literacy rate in L1: 1%–5%. Literacy rate in L2: 50%–75%. 2,500 read; 1,500 can write. Dictionary. Grammar. Bible portions: 1996.
||Primary schools in nearly every village, secondary schools for every 3 or 4 villages. Swidden agriculturalists with diversification of crops and planting cycles: dry field rice, maize, tubers, beans; cash crop is copra; palm brandy; fishermen. Christian, Muslim.