Nature Wisdom: Animal Kin

By Pat Tuholske, Naturalist

In a recent trip to the city to run errands and put my mom’s flower garden to bed, I took note of every animal I saw or heard.

In my 100 mile round trip I encountered:

Horse Herd grazing roadside field

Cows munching hay bales in pasture

Black Snake slithering along shoulder

Honey Bee held captive by truck camper

Skunk – road kill

Eagle Pair hunting river bottom

Opossum – road kill

Male Cardinal ablaze on rooftop

Dogs walking their Humans; barking in yards;

riding in cars

Worm and Centipede tunneling flowerbed

Housefly rushing glass door

Bumblebee buzzing late coleus flowers

Cat sunning in shaft of light

Red Hawk harassed by Grackles

Rabbits munching lawn

Chipmunk perched on log

Squirrel stealing birdseed

Wren traversing oak trunk

Humans shopping, driving, jogging, biking

Blue Jay feeding on Caterpillars

Box Turtle nestled in wet leaves

Crows cawing trash collector

Geese stopping traffic

Great Blue Heron gliding riverbank

Deer – road kill

Vultures coasting on thermals

Swallowtail Butterfly feasting on milkweed

Total Species encountered:  30

I challenge you to take note of the Animals you encounter in your day.  We share our world with them and so often we take them for granted or completely ignore them.

With the simple act of noticing and acknowledging Animals, you strengthen the strands of the Web of Life.  When you open your awareness to them, Animals become part of your reality… part of your “herd”… your kin.

This Irish blessing is given to Animals during harvest celebrations.  I recite it often to send gratitude and healing to my Animal Kin. You can substitute flock, pack or pod for herd:

The health of the Herd is the health of the people.

The health of the Herd is the health of the Earth.

The health of the Herd is the life of the people.

The health of the Herd is the life of the Earth.

Healing for all the Animals.

Healing for those who care for the Animals.

Healing for the Land and Sea.

Healing for us All.

Check out Pat Tuholske’s journal “Nature as Healer” for musings on the Human-Nature relationship.  Go to elementalearthcamp.com. Pat is the facilitator of Elemental Earthcamp  “off the grid” eco-camp and shamanic retreat in the Missouri Ozarks.  She is also the crafter at WillowRainHerbalGoods.com.