READ NOW: Dakota Field Guide and & Storybook – Learn to Identify Over 80 Grassland Birds

“As Indigenous people of the land, protection and conservation is not just about the Species at Risk or the health of the ecosystem but includes protecting the relationship and connection we have with them. That connection is a part of our language, our culture, and identity as Dakota Oyate (the Dakota Nation).” ​- Dakota Field Guide & Storybook, Forward

This story was part of the CIER Summer 2020 Newsletter. Sign-up here for more stories like this.

We need to re-learn how to listen to birds, they have so many things to tell us.

Using the Dakota Field Guide & Storybook you can learn how to identify over 80 different birds, discover their Dakota names, and explore unique pieces of Traditional Dakota Knowledge about them. Such as the Dakota name for the America Crow, ‘unċiṡiċeda’ means “Like a bad mother-in-law.” The name is poking fun at the way a mother-in-law speaks to her daughter-in-law. It sounds funnier in Dakota,  and it’s a great example of the amount of humour in the Dakota culture and language.

Birds were highly respected and revered by our ancestors. Unfortunately, today fewer people pay attention to the birds surrounding them. The Field Guide aims to change how we view, understand, and interact with the natural world. It also raises awareness of bird Species at Risk and the degradation of the prairie Grasslands ecosystem.

The birds presented in the Field Guide can be found in or around Sioux Valley Dakota Nation, in southwestern Manitoba, Canada. It is an introductory-level guide to birds, bird watching, and the grassland ecosystem.

We would like to extend a special thanks to our partners on this project: Sioux Valley Dakota Nation and Nature Manitoba.

This project was undertaken with the financial support of the Government of Canada through the federal Department of Environment and Climate Change.

Ce projet a été realisé avec l’appui financier du gouvernement du Canada agissant par l’entremise du ministére federal de l’Environnement et du Changement climatique.

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