A couple of weeks ago, traditional Native American Buffalo Harvests took place on Wild Idea Buffalo Company producers ranches.
On the Cheyenne River Ranch, Wambli Ska Okolakiciye, a Lakota organization that teaches youth the importance of their culture as a solution to bring forward the sources of strength and resiliency to address the changes they face, came out to harvest a buffalo in their traditional way.
Forty-five youth were in attendance, along with elders and spiritual leaders. Prayers were offered, songs were sung and the native drum filled the morning sky.
Chris White Eagle, our plant manager and WSO leader, along with other Wild Idea employees and Native elders, lead the way in breaking down the carcass. It was a joyful time, with lots of laughter and thanksgiving.
In Montana on the Diamond 4 D Bison Ranch, manager Chris Bechtold worked with the Director of Indian Education of the Great Falls Public Schools to experience the same.
The director spoke to the students about the land, the history of the Black Feet people, and the importance of the buffalo before the harvest began.
The education continued as the carcass was being broken down, leaving no part unused.
It was a wonderful experience and day for all. We are honored to be a part of our area Native American communities and to work along side them, learning and growing, and building bridges together through the American Bison. Thank you, Pilamaya, Nitsíniiyi'taki.