Nature's Clean Up Crew

Posted on August 12, 2016 at 5:20 PM

Corvids (crows, ravens, and blue jays) and vultures have a specific job in nature. When driving down the road and seeing roadkill, typically there are one or more corvids there making a nice meal for themselves. Crows are funny, they aren’t overly intimidated by traffic. If their provided “hot” meal is at the edge of the road, or at a place where the cars aren’t overly close, they’ll continue their meal without bother. I’ve sat and watched a murder of crows systematically consume the majority of a squirrel (not from close enough to literally see – ew!), leaving mostly the bones and fur. In some cultures (even currently) when a person passes, they are left at a sacred ground and nature’s cleanup crew is expected to show up and take care of the remains. As civilization has grown and expanded, humans have provided crows many more opportunities to scavenge, and shrewd crow is definitely an opportunist. I find it interesting in my travels to compare the size of the local crows to the ones I interact with daily. I assume that as with humans, besides genetics, diet will have much to do with the size of the local crow.


At the risk of stating the obvious, humans generate an inordinate amount of waste. As an Earth Healer, I possibly notice more than most individuals. I could write an entire post about the systematic destruction of our planet, not only from corporate waste, but possibly even more-so from every day people living their lives. However, I will refrain from that rant.


I’ve read recent reports that 40% of food in the United States goes uneaten. Restaurants aren’t allowed to give the food which they’ve overestimated and not used (not people’s uneaten leftovers) to somewhere useful like homeless shelters or soup kitchens; they literally have to throw it away. This leads to some of the homeless dumpster dinner diving which is a normal thing to see when I’m in the city for business. We not only see waste like this, but many people order more fast food than they can consume (thanks to Super Sizing) and discard much. Crows take advantage, and help clean up, in both of these scenarios.


Have you ever noticed the number of crows hanging around any parking lot where food just might happen to fall? French fries? Oh yeah! They can carry several in their large, sturdy beaks. I’ve watched crows clean up dropped food from parking lots or parks more times than I can say. Even before I connected with Crow. And crows will not let something like “packaging” get in their way – whether it’s a food container or a garbage bag, Crow loves to solve problems and will figure out how to get what it is that they want to eat.


All of this to say that Crow gives us the lesson of: If you see waste of any kind, pick it up Human! I’ve a few ideas to help: find a proper receptacle and get rid of it. If you recycle at home and it’s a recyclable product, take it home and put it in your bin. It’s easy enough to start carrying a bag with you in which you can collect trash and later take care of it. You might feel a tad conspicuous at first, but know that you are helping Earth and being a good steward of your environment.


I started doing this most days on my walks in my favorite secluded grove in the park close-by. I have a neighbor who occasionally walks with me, and is/was about as far from Earth-Conscious as they come. At first he thought I was really strange for picking up trash while I do my walk (not to mention picking up crow feathers and treating them as the gift they are to me). A few walks later, he now also takes a bag on his morning run (he also brings his recycling over to my house).


And guess what else? Recently we saw another person who we pass regularly in the park on our walks, walking around with a bag picking up trash! YES!


Being Nature’s Clean Up Crew is absolutely an honorable and necessary job. If a few more of us pitch in to assist with the monumental task which humanity has created, perhaps we can restore a tiny bit of health to our Mother and make a more beautiful environment in the process.


BB and Namaste


































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