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Hoan Kiem Turtle and other examples of "emblem" animals--important to people

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posted on Sep, 14 2012 @ 01:25 AM
I have recently been thinking quite a bit about the Hoan Kiem Turtle(s) of Hanoi, Vietnam. For those who aren't familiar, this very small population of very large turtle lives in a very polluted little lake in Vietnam. The turtle is part of Vietnamese folklore and is an important aspect of the lives of many people living in that area. Before being discovered recently, it was only thought to be a legend. It was a cryptid. It's now, I guess, a former cryptid.

I'm looking for stories like these. I'm calling them "emblem" animals because they are integral to the lives of people... because they are part of established folklore or culture, and (in terms of what I'm looking for) they exist and have been identified.

Something seems to ring a bell about a group in Africa. Cattle are very important to the Masai... do you see what I'm trying to get at? I think it was something with elephants, but now I can't remember.

What are some specific instances of animals (particularly those that are threatened or endangered) being very important to people beyond things like uses? And the more similar to the Hoan Kiem turtles in terms of folklore, conservation, etc, the better. Even cryptids themselves, if they are entwined enough into the culture.

Searching for this on the internet is quite challenging. I think that having this central location listing will prove useful.
edit on 9/14/2012 by ravenshadow13 because: clarity

posted on Sep, 14 2012 @ 01:42 AM
reply to post by ravenshadow13

I have always liked scorpians and have always pondered on this pic

posted on Sep, 14 2012 @ 01:49 AM
reply to post by SarnholeOntarable

The ancient egyptians were obviously extremely smart people, it wouldn't surprise me if they knew how to use their venom for medicinal purposes.

posted on Sep, 20 2012 @ 03:08 PM
reply to post by ravenshadow13

Cool idea, and I like your term of "emblem animals"! I think the White Buffalo should qualify, and that was the first thing that came to my mind when I read your thread.

Susan Shown Harjo cried at her Washington D.C. office when she heard about the birth of the white buffalo calf. "It filled me with joy that had to spill over," says Harjo, who is Cheyenne and Muskogee. "The white buffalo is an important symbol for a lot of Plains Indians because they are messengers of creation. It is an important sign of well being on the verge of an awakening."
Wiki link

A white buffalo or white bison is an American bison possessing white fur, and is considered sacred or spiritually significant in several Native American religions; therefore, such buffalo are often visited for prayer and other religious rituals.

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