nature & vintage blog



Wolves and Ravens: A Curious Relationship (Video)

The raven is sometimes known as “the wolf-bird.” Ravens, like many other animals, scavenge at wolf kills, but there’s more to it than that.  Both wolves and ravens have the ability to form social attachments and they seem to have evolved over many years to form these attachments with each other, to both species’ benefit. There are a couple of theories as to why wolves and ravens end up at the same carcasses. One is that because ravens can fly, they are better at finding carcasses than wolves are. But they can’t get to the food once they get there, because they can’t open up the carcass. So they’ll make a lot of noise, and then wolves will come and use their sharp teeth and strong jaws to make the food accessible not just to themselves, but also to the ravens. Ravens have also been observed circling a sick elk or moose and calling out, possibly alerting wolves to an easy kill. The other theory is that ravens respond to the howls of wolves preparing to hunt (and, for that matter, to human hunters shooting guns). They find out where the wolves are going and following. Both theories may be correct. Wolves and ravens also play. A raven will sneak up behind a wolf and yank its tail and the wolf will play back. Ravens sometimes respond to wolf howls with calls of their own, resulting in a concert of howls and calls.  Sources: Mind of the Raven, Bernd Heinrich, The American Crow and the Common Raven, Lawrence Kilham


Odin, that’s why


Imbolc or Imbolg is the first of the Spring holidays that ring in the festivals for fertility. Not just fertility of self and body as many non-believers belief. But fertility of the earth for an abundant crop, and garden, a fertile mind for imagining new ideas and concepts; perhaps for work or home. Imbolg is the celebration of setting things in fruitful motion and preparing for a wonderful year.  In general terms it is the celebration of things yet to be born for the new year. Those things that are hidden under winters last snows. It is a time for preparation and readiness. A time to look over your supplies for the coming year and make a list of what you might need. It is a time to take stock of your magik cabinet, you pantry and even your plans or goals for the year.  In traditional ceremony Imbolc/Imbolg is the festival of the Goddess aspect of the divine spirits. The Goddess Brid or Bridget, the bride who is waiting for the return of her groom, the sun God. In original Celtic traditions, it is the preparation for the rebirth of the sun God. Today the Irish know this festival as St. Bridget’s Day.


From The Magical Druid, things for people to do to celebrate Imbolc even if they don’t have a local group to work with on the night.


Eläintarhassa by mattisj on Flickr.