This morning a large banner depicting a buffalo and a tipi with the message “Protect the Sacred” was discovered by Buffalo Field Campaign patrols as they were documenting livestock trailers loaded with captured Yellowstone buffalo heading to the slaughter house. The banner was hung off of the Corwin Springs bridge that crosses the Yellowstone River, just a few miles north of Yellowstone National Park.
A short time later, Buffalo Field Campaign received the following statement:
A Call to Action: Save the Buffalo of Yellowstone Park:
As the last resisters in Standing Rock hold off the pipeline, so do the last remaining 5,000 indigenous Buffalo here at Yellowstone Park. Every morning up to 100 of the sacred Bison are exterminated during a government-sponsored population control program. Today, at dawn, at least fifty of our Buffalo brothers were shoved into trailers and hauled to slaughter. There are 1,500 Bison that are slated to be captured and slaughtered.
Yellowstone Herd Bison are descendants of twenty-three Great Plain’s Bison who survived the 19th century extermenation campaign, managing to eke out a living in the corner of the National Park. Once, they numbered 60 million, and ranged the entire continent, supporting millions of Indigenous lives. Since 1901, they have managed to repopulate in this harsh reservation style habitat. However, each year through government mandate, Buffalo are trapped and slaughtered by contract killers–the pregnant mothers have their offspring ripped from their wombs. These last remaining Bison live precariously under govermental control and continue to be pushed into oblivion.
Our communities are made up of many different nations, belief systems and lifestyles. Each member plays a role and in a way that role resembles nature. Honeybee’s work together to maintain their colony; buffalo, when going through hardship, will circle and protect the weak and when attacked, trees will signal other trees to start their self defense response before being invaded. On a micro level the change we create in every community is momentous as it encourages and unifies on a macro level.
This is a call to our relatives from all four directions to step forward in prayer and in action, to put an end to genocide and save the last wild roaming Buffalo, without the Buffalo we cease to exist.
Wake up! The Buffalo need your help!
In Memory of Rosalie Little Thunder, All Buffalo Nations, The Ancestors, and All Future Generations. For Mni Wiconi!
Earth’s Indigenous Army
The Montana-based wild bison advocacy group, Buffalo Field Campaign, applauds this courageous action which will help draw more attention to the growing opposition to the maltreatment and slaughter of the country’s last continuously wild buffalo herds.
“This is great timing, as this comes on BFC’s last day of our Week of Action, so it tells us that others have heard the call, are paying close attention, and are taking steps to make their opposition to the slaughter of the sacred buffalo known,” said Buffalo Field Campaign media coordinator Stephany Seay. “This banner is a testament to the resistance strengthening and solidarity growing throughout Native communities and earth defense allies.”
For more information about what is happening to America’s last wild buffalo, visit http://www.BuffaloFieldCampaign.org.
Just a brief addendum to our recent blog on the killing of wild Bison in Montana with the help of the US Park Service and others. A book on this issue was recently authored by Dan Brister with a foreward by Doug Peacock, published by WestWinds Press, titled “In the Presence of Buffalo”.
Dan Brister has been on the front lines of this ongoing travesty since 1997 and this book is a must read for anyone who cares about wildlife, Yellowstone bison, Yellowstone National Park policy or the welfare of animals in general. Warning, it will make you angry. This is a small book of only 92 pages but is succinctly well-written and documented, neatly tying the history of the massive bison herds destruction to the ongoing ignoring of Native American treaty rights regarding bison and of course the current “management” debacle. Available through Amazon or the Buffalo Field Campaign’s website (order from them, they need our help at www.BuffaloFieldCampaign.org) Read it and pass it on…..send a copy or 2 to your Senator or Congress person as well.
Something very ugly has been happening in Montana near the Yellowstone National Park boundary. Over the past few years the Montana Division of Livestock, US Park Service and the Department of Agriculture (APHIS) have been capturing, hazing, killing and experimenting on the last wild bison in the US. The bison in Yellowstone National Park are the descendents of the few survivors of the attempted extirpation of the bison in the late 1800s.
Under the guise of “The Interagency Bison Management Plan” bison are forcibly removed from federal lands (primarily National Forest) in Montana that the bison have used for millennia and still use as winter range and calving grounds. Helicopters, riders on horseback and ATVs harass, haze and run bison from these federal lands up to 7 miles into the national park, without regard for pregnant cows, cows giving birth and very young calves. All for the wrong assumption that domestic cattle can be infected with brucellosis from wild bison, no transmission of this disease has ever been recorded from wild bison to domestic cattle (the brucellosis that bison carry originally came from the introduction of domestic cattle). Elk also carry brucellosis but no such actions are carried out against elk. The people involved with these actions in the state of Montana are not wildlife biologists, they are brand inspectors and others concerned with domestic livestock issues. Bison are not cattle, they are part of our wildlife legacy.
There has been an ongoing campaign to stop this abuse. The Buffalo Field Campaign (www.buffalofieldcampaign.org) has been active in the field, documenting what’s been happening in Montana, working to stop bad legislation in the state of Montana and alerting the public (as well as a very small nonprofit can) to this very sad chapter in our treatment of wild bison. More people need to be made aware of this travesty and give their support to our wild heritage. Please go to the BFC website to educate yourself about these issues and take action to save our wild bison.