Standing Rock Protesters Say Wild Buffalo Sighting Is A Sign Of Hope

If you haven’t been keeping up with the news lately, there is one of the biggest recent Native American protests going on right now of the Dakota Access Pipeline project. The Dakota Access Pipeline is an underground pipeline that is being built to transport 470,000 billion barrels of crude oil from North Dakota to Illinois. Though the project is already 60 percent complete, the project needs to build the next set of pipeline through the Standing Rock Sioux reservation.

The Standing Rock Sioux are protesting the construction of the pipeline through their reservation because they believe it will threaten their water resources, public health and welfare, and cultural resources. They also do not believe that the government got proper permission or consultation with the Sioux to build on their land, instead sticking to an archaic colonial American belief of “imminent domain.”


Since then, a camp of over 1,000 protesters has erupted, called the Sacred Stone Camp. While the protest has been going on for months, it has only recently been getting more attention, as protesters are getting arrested or shot with rubber bullets. Though the Sacred Stone Camp is cold and becoming increasingly dangerous, protesters are not losing hope. In fact, when a herd of buffalo suddenly stampeded across the nearby land they are camped out on, it was seen as a Native American sign.

According to Native American website White Wolf Pack, buffalo have great significance to tribes in North America, saying, “The bison is powerful medicine that is a symbol of sacrifice and service to the community. The bison people agreed to give their lives so the American Indian could have food, shelter and clothing. The bison is also a symbol of gratitude and honor as it is happy to accept its meager existence as it stands proud against the winds of adversity.”


While bison stampedes and sighting are not out of the ordinary on the Standing Rock reservation, it may be just what the doctor ordered to give protesters a new breathe of hope in their cause.