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Burial Rituals Among Animals

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posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 08:14 AM
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Rituals of Death

We as a specie have rituals when death occurs.. Different cultures have different rituals depending on where and when they are located.. Endocannibalism, Sky burial,Viking funeral, and those are just a few that has occurred through out the cultural belief system we as a specie had.. There are two more species with a ritual like funeral, one of those is a magpie and ill quote Dr. Bekoff of the University of Colorado;





“One approached the corpse, gently pecked at it, just as an elephant would nose the carcass of another elephant, and stepped back. Another magpie did the same thing. Next, one of the magpies flew off, brought back some grass and laid it by the corpse. Another magpie did the same. Then all four stood vigil for a few seconds and one by one flew off. We can’t know what they were actually thinking or feeling, but reading their action there’s no reason not to believe these birds were saying a magpie farewell to their friend,”




The other is like Dr. Bekoff mentions;" The elephant."



Historian, journalist and biographer Martin Meredith had this story to tell:



”The entire family of a dead matriarch, including her young calf, were all gently touching her body with their trunks, trying to lift her. The elephant herd were all rumbling loudly. The calf was observed to be weeping and made sounds that sounded like a scream, but then the entire herd fell incredibly silent. They then began to throw leaves and dirt over the body and broke off tree branches to cover her. They spent the next two days quietly standing over her body. They sometimes had to leave to get water or food, but they would always return.”
Elephants are such compassionate animals that they’ll even grieve for and bury their number one killers…humans






A news report in Kenya told of an elephant that trampled a human mother and her child and then stopped to bury them before disappearing in the bush.


Elephants are one of the only species of mammals other than Homo sapiens sapiens known to have or have a ritual around death. They show a keen interest in the bones of their own kind. They are often seen gently investigating the bones with their trunks and feet while remaining very quiet. Sometimes elephants that are completely unrelated to the deceased still visit their graves.

George Adamson recalls when he shot a bull elephant from a herd that kept breaking into the government gardens of Northern Kenya. George gave the elephant's meat to local Turkana tribesmen and then dragged the rest of the carcass half a 800m away. That night, the other elephants found the body and took the shoulder blade and leg bone and returned the bones to the exact spot the elephant was killed.

The Death of Eleanor

On the 10th of October 2003, the Save the Elephants research team in Samburu were informed by the rangers that an elephant was unwell near the Wire Bridge area and that it had fallen. The team rushed over to the area, to find that the female was still standing but had apparently broken her tusk during previous falls and her right ear seemed damaged. Her trunk was motionless and she dragged it across the ground as she moved forward in small steps.

The female was identified as Eleanor, matriarch of the First Ladies family. Eleanor moved towards the main road, where she fell on a gentle slope. Another matriarch of the Virtues family named Grace, attempted to lift her a number of times, but unfortunately caused more damage as her pushing resulted in a number of tusk wounds and Eleanor fell heavily each time as she was thrown forward.

Grace was incredibly agitated and stressed, and she started streaming. She showed a lot of concern towards Eleanor, indicating how elephants stick together in times of problematic situations, especially the matriarchs of different families. Grace eventually left after a while and the following afternoon Eleanor died.
During the day, a number of families visited her. Some tried to lift her whilst others smelt her as if to confirm she was dead.

More elephants visited her, including her family. Her young calf tried to suckle from her and in a confused state, moved between all the female members trying to suckle from all of them.

Eleanor’s family stayed in the area and continued to visit her carcass often. Her calf was ‘adopted’ by Mary, and Martha has since become the matriarch of the First Ladies family.


Chimpanzees, on the other hand, maintain their routines and only stops interacting with the corpse when it has decomposed so much that it is no longer recognizable.



Recent Studies suggest that giraffes and western scrub jays may mourn as well, each with their own customs.

Endocannibalism - Wikipedia
Sky Burial - Wikipedia
Viking Funeral - Wikipedia
Magpie - Wikipedia
Animals Have Funerals
Emotion, Space and Society
Dr. Marc Bekoff - University of Colorado
Dr. Mark Bekoff - Wikipedia
Martin Meredith - Wikipedia
BBC - Kenya Elephant Buries Victims
Psychology Today - Grief in Animals
Elephant cognition - Wikipedia
George Adamson - Wikipedia
Turkana People - Wikipedia
Save The Elephants - The Death of Eleanor
Respect the Dead
Behavorial response of a Chimpanzee Mother - PDF
Chimpanzee Infanticide
edit on 20161029 by tikbalang because: add/utube




posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 08:28 AM
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a reply to: tikbalang

I've been enjoying your latest posting series.
Thank you.

I thought I'd share this with you from a site/place that I love local to me.
Elephant Sanctuary News



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 08:36 AM
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a reply to: TNMockingbird

Thank you! I was in another rabbit hole, so my posts became somewhat obscure for a while.. But no worries i always find myself out, i just "empty my mind" to take in the whole experience..

I always loved zoology, and i believe we can learn more about ourselves by observing nature, then we can learn from "each other.. "

But the elephant is intriguing, mystic, mythical, and a cornerstone for some of our beliefs.. So im gonna dig myself deeper until i become obscure and make no sense



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 08:42 AM
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a reply to: tikbalang

But the elephant is intriguing, mystic, mythical, and a cornerstone for some of our beliefs.. So im gonna dig myself deeper until i become obscure and make no sense


Well, when you do...I'll be following along.





posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 09:13 AM
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I witnessed a crow funeral once. It was sort of spooky.

This small group of crows were sitting in a small tree above their fallen comrade. Even when I walked my dog directly under them and stopped for a bit. Just quietly sitting...



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 10:16 AM
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a reply to: intrptr

You waited for this, right?




posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 10:26 AM
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a reply to: tikbalang

I stand in wonder of animals. We have chickens and when you pause fora moment and consider the perfection that needs to take place for a "simple" chicken to live, it is astounding. And we kill and eat them by the millions every week.

I look forward to the day when we can safely "print" meat and no longer have to kill our animal friends. Pigs are darn smart, and we kill them by the millions too, this isn't blame, I eat meat too.

The small mag pies are definitely upset just like the elephants were. Animals are given dunce hats so it is easier to eat them (the ones we do eat).



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 10:33 AM
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a reply to: seasonal

I believe you eat it, cause you cant relate to it..



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 10:51 AM
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a reply to: tikbalang

Plus I believe, correctly or otherwise, it is an important part of our ancient and modern diet. But I realize that my diet kills other vertebrae.



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 10:56 AM
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a reply to: seasonal

You ever wondered why we have, appendix it breaks down cellulose; Im sure meat was part of our " ancient diet " and not our " new diet ".
Thats why we have to cook everything cause we can eat it raw? Botulism is a great thing!



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 11:01 AM
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a reply to: tikbalang

Sorry, no one wins a meat/veg debate.

The good news is I openly support any person's right to their our dietary beliefs.



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 11:11 AM
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a reply to: intrptr
Crows are considered to be among the most intelligent inhabitants of Earth and exhibit some "Human-like" behaviors as you mention. Crows have been studied extensively by students at the University of Washington, and here is a brief video that talks a bit about the work being done there.

edit on 10292016 by seattlerat because: (no reason given)



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 12:38 PM
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a reply to: seasonal

Or you could make it easier and check our biology, or If you think that our biology is a belief system then I am speechless and do "believe" that I would lose that debate due to " perimeter of ignorance "



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 12:43 PM
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a reply to: seattlerat

I didn't see a reference to a burial, like the magpie or the elephant.. Grief maybe?



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 01:02 PM
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a reply to: tikbalang

I loved the birds, I mean Tippi Hedrin...

Images



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 03:16 PM
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Back in June my stepdad died and I inherited his dog. His dog didn't really understand what was going on, and she's not a dog with a good grasp of English (she spent most of her time alone, so was never used to people talking to her). From her perspective her owner just vanished one day and never came back.

Around here, dogs aren't allowed in cemeteries, but I eventually found a chance to sneak her in and take her to her former owners grave. Despite having never been in a cemetery before, or me explaining what was going on, she figured it out. I'm pretty sure dogs can smell the bodies through the ground, and she recognized her owner.

As far as I'm aware, that was her first experience with death and she figured out both death and burial pretty quickly.

Animals are smart, and burial definitely seems to be something that's not unique to humans.



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 03:26 PM
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a reply to: tikbalang

Sorry, I thought that funeral rituals in animals was close enough to be relevant to the thread. I apologize for not adhering more strictly to the OP.



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 04:26 PM
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a reply to: seattlerat

Well no, im curious about anything that might relate to any ritual around death in the animal kingdom.. But i couldnt see any?

This is an example i find fascinating, a bird comes to a human for help..




posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 05:54 PM
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a reply to: tikbalang

Animals coming to humans for help is an entirely different topic... recent studies have shown that mice (and other rodents like rats), experience "sympathetic" pain when one of their kind is experiencing distress, both physical and psychological. Some researchers believe that these experiences are transmitted via pheromones (scent), but at least one individual (not sure of their qualifications) believes that this is evidence of TELEPATHY! I have often wondered why animals sometimes go to humans for help... perhaps they can sense if a person is "good" or "helpful". I have experienced several very odd incidents of sick or injured animals coming to me (apparently) for help when they could just have easily gone to the person next door.

Back to crows... it is pretty clear that crows (and ravens) become agitated/distressed when they encounter one of their own that is dead or in the process of dying. A youtube search of "crow funeral" will present quite a few cases that seem to depict these gatherings. Whether or not this is just their way of trying to say goodbye or an evolutionary trait that helps them stay alive by ascertaining what might have harmed one of their own is most likely open to conjecture (see my link at the bottom of this post).

Either way, I am fascinated by all animals. I'm not so much into humans... they tend to scare me.

Here is a LINK to the article regarding mice & pain. The comment section contains an intriguing statement regarding telepathy.
Mystery of Crow Funerals Solved
edit on 10292016 by seattlerat because: (no reason given)

edit on 10292016 by seattlerat because: added link



posted on Oct, 29 2016 @ 06:04 PM
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a reply to: seattlerat

When i look at your posts, i see a lot of references to a higher state of consciousness, but then no statements on what you think, no cross references, no critical thinking.. I would like to see a post by you on a topic.. with your own conclusion..

What does your gut feeling tell you? I would love to hear, you..




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