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Native Values

We Are All Part of Creation

The history between Native peoples and Buffalo is not a story that everyone knows, but the histories are intricately intertwined. While we cannot recreate the vast herds that once were, we can bring Buffalo back.
Native Medicine Wheel

The Shoshone Medicine Wheel

The medicine wheel philosophy is written in stone throughout the Rocky Mountains from Canada to the Southwest, and dates back thousands of years. It is the circle that dictates the shape of our lodges, and is foundational to understanding the connection our grandmas and grandpas had to the land, water, air, animals and life itself.

Our Indigenous ancestors had a cyclical understanding of nature, which permeated all areas of life.

Beliefs & Values

The medicine wheel is the foundation of our systems and values — values that are widely held across many, if not most, Indiginous cultures and people. And while many of our belief systems and practices were forcefully eradicated in the 1900s, we’re trying to keep them. Much of that restoration is bringing back the Buffalo.

Native Tipis
Pronghorn Wyoming

Wildlife Management

Buffalo remain a vital piece to the well-being of not only Indigenous communities, but also to the land itself. As a society, we have widely forgotten how to “see” Buffalo in their habitat, the way we see pronghorn, moose, elk, and other wildlife species. A return to the medicine wheel is helping to guide our belief systems, which shows up in the way we think about wildlife management and use.

buffalo petroglyph

There is hope for our shared journey with the Buffalo.

As the Buffalo are returned to their native lands, we find opportunities to practice compassion and generosity. Passing down these values to Tribal youth is part of our cultural connection, and also part of understanding what it means to be human and relate to the natural world as stewards and caretakers.
Patti Harris Baldes
“I feel like I was introduced to a part of me I didn’t even know was there when we received Buffalo again.”

– Patti Harris Baldes, Executive Director, Wind River Native Advocacy Center

Learn More About Buffalo

All About Buffalo

History of the Buffalo

Healing with Buffalo

Native Values

Myths & Facts

Science & Research

For Educators