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Native American Pelican Mythology

Pelicans are not very important birds to the mythology of most Native American tribes. The Nez Perce considered Pelican a medicine bird, and seeing a pelican in a dream or vision was a sign that a man had been granted spiritual power. And in some California Indian tribes, Pelican was said to have control over storms and weather.

Pelicans are also used as clan animals in some Native American cultures. Tribes with Pelican Clans include the Ojibwe tribe (whose Pelican clan and its totem are named Zhedeg.)

Native American Legends About Pelicans

*Humility:
    Oral history from a Cree elder about the winds punishing a hunter for killing pelicans recklessly.

Recommended Books of Pelican Stories from Native American Myth and Legend

Native American Animal Stories:
    Great collection of American Indian tales about animals, told by Abenaki storyteller Joseph Bruchac.
Flights of Fancy: Birds in Myth, Legend, and Superstition:
    A good book on the meaning of birds in world mythology, including North and South America.



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