Grizzly bear playing with a twig in water
12 August 2016

Humble Bumble

Humble Bumble came from a roadside zoo that was closing, just a few weeks old, and even then it was clear that he was a “differently-abled” bear. Now 14 years old he is enormous, but it isn’t the size you notice first, it is a gentleness, an innocence. It is in the expression of his face, in his movements, in the whole feel he emanates. Most animals at Earthfire have names reflecting their magnificence---Northwind the wolf, Windwalker the cougar. But as we spent time with him---watched him play, sweetly, gently, not too coordinated, not too quick on the draw---the name just came out: Humble Bumble.   More Stories About Humble...

Large salad with lettuce, carrots, blueberries, strawberries, grapes, and ranch dressing

— by Dawn Harrison — We received a donation of 30 pounds of organic meat and salmon, much to the delight of the animals. I felt bad for the couple whose freezer decided to stop working, but I was hard-pressed to stay sad after seeing the joy that it brought to certain individuals on property. The cats (Tahi the Cougar and Better the Bobcat) got some of the most beautiful steaks I’ve seen in a long time as well as a slice of salmon---and showed their appreciation in their own feline way. They quickly nabbed their bounty and stole off to the corner to savor it. The wolves, coyotes, and foxes also enjoyed their meaty treats, devouring their choice bits with zeal. But the bears, as...

A white wolf and a dark gray wolf howling together

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — As I walk through the early morning cold, the wolves and coyotes begin their morning howl. I let the beauty of the sound vibrate through me, into me, into every cell of my body until the music of the howls and I become one. 30 March. The melting mounds of snow are forming great puddles on the land, puddles that are apparently irresistible to the multitudes of birds on the property. They are out there indulging wildly, ecstatically, fluttering and splashing and ducking and preening and ducking and splashing and fluttering for a very long time. The ice is gone! Freedom! Spring! The joy and excitement is contagious. Life is good. Hopefully our willow buds...

White chicken in a nesting box

— by Dawn Harrison — Sally the Chicken was on the office porch as she often is, sunning herself, when something told me she wanted attention. When I bent to pet her, she tucked her body and gave me a look that said, “Well come on, pick me up.” So I did. I was expecting a very short and possibly awkward time holding a wary chicken. What I got was a very loving Sally putting her head to my chest, looking up, and cooing to me a bit. It was a lovely connection with such a strong and willful creature. Of course, she kept true to her reputation once I put her down. She ruffled her feathers, preened a few, and determinedly walked back to her feed pan. But a connection was made. — by...

White chicken

— by Susan Eirich, Ph.D. — Sally the chicken came marching towards me with something clearly on her mind. She had a request. Would I kindly see to it that she could get back into the coop---she needed to lay an egg. Unlike her sister, she does not do anything with timidity. She had a demand and expected it to be responded to. In fairness to her, imagine if you were chicken-sized and had an egg as large in proportion to your body as an egg is to a chicken. You might have a sense of urgency as well. I’m not sure how I knew that was her request, but somehow, I did. She doesn’t have her usual access through the dip under the fence, since the snow is melting and the dip is...

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