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Our two-legged winged bird relatives

This section highlights all the Ziŋtkála relatives I have spent time with and photographed in the wild. On all trees, lakes and features of Ina Maka you can find our bird relatives thriving. Every habitat is suitable for different types of bird species and many birds cover the full range of the Midwest. I have included Ziŋtkála of North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota as the primary species but added in additional birds that I have been able to photograph to their family sections below. Birds are collectively a keystone species, with some of them on their own keeping the balance of the world in check. Every yard, forest, wooded area, lake, stream, pond and grassland you look out into is home to a variety of birds. (Any Plains reference to bird ranges in each section focuses on North Dakota, South Dakota and Southwestern Minnesota primarily.)

Birds: Welcome

Winged relatives and Bird Families of Ina Maka


The most sacred and highly respected of all birds. Our relative of the sky, the important and intelligent watcher above the Great Plains. The one and only Golden Eagle.

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The American symbol. The comeback story everybody loves to hear, the Bald Eagle now spans all across Ina Maka once again. Highly intelligent and greatly respected.

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The owls of Minnesota and the Midwest. All owls carry messages and those do include good messages as well. Follow the link for the Owls of the Dakotas and boreal forests of Northern Minnesota.

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Many Hawks and Falcons rule the skies of the day. No matter where you are from; the deep woods, city, or out on a prairie a ċhetáŋ is always near and keeping watch.

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A speaker of the Lakota language the Meadowlark is a true and great relative. One of the first ones to sing out in the mornings across the Badlands and Plains.

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Another important bird relative the Magpie helped our relatives win the Great Race. The magpie still is seen in close contact with its bison relatives and holds great knowledge.



Woodpeckers across the Midwest and Minnesota can be heard often before they are seen. They are known for drumming trees and their distinct look. Most males in this family have red feathers.

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Many native sparrows live in harmony across Ina Maka and can be seen any season. American, or New World Sparrows, have very similar patterns and take close inspection of feathers or calls to tell apart.



Many types of Warblers in all colors, shapes and sizes live in every habitat of Ina Maka. Click to learn about the variety of warblers, some of which are only spotted traveling through during migration.

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Cardinal Family

The Cardinal family includes Tanagers, the Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Blue Grosbeak, Indigo Bunting, and the colorful Dickcissel. Many of these bird relatives will visitor your feeders.

Northern Cardinal MNV 13.24.jpg


Finches can be found in your backyard and across the woods and prairies. The Finch family includes Evening and Pine Grosbeak, Redpolls, Crossbills and Siskins.



Thrush family, that includes: Robins, Blue Birds, Thrushes, and Townsend Solitaire. These species leave during colder winter months but will migrate back with the return of Spring.

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Many unique and beautiful songbirds take flight across Ina Maka. You can identify these birds by their distinct calls and songs. Check out this section for Chickadees, Nuthatches, Wrens and more!!



The blackbird family includes all blackbirds plus orioles, bobolinks, and cowbirds. Down by most bodies of water or field a blackbird is present.

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The Corvid family is one of the smartest families in the bird world. Species include Crow, Ravens, Magpies, Clarks Nutcracker and Jays. This family uses tools and groups to their benefit.



The Hummingbirds are the fastest flyers. Click here to check out the hummingbirds I have encountered in the wild.

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Game Birds

Quail, Turkeys, Grouse and Pheasants are some of the birds considered game birds in North America. Some are native to North America and others were introduced to our territories.

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All waterfowl included in this section except larger birds like Swans and Pelicans. All ducks, geese, mergansers, loons, and similar species are grouped together here.


Cranes, Egrets & Herons

Included in this section are all Herons, Egrets, Bitterns and Cranes.

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Swans & pelicans

The Swan and Pelican relatives that share the waterways are included in this section.

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Shorebirds & Water Birds

All birds that inhabit and live primarily around Mni across Ina Maka have been grouped in the water and shore bird area.



Swallows and Purple Martins are the primary members of this family I have run into. In the air Swallows are quick and agile flyers.


Other Birds

Gulls, Doves, Belted Kingfisher, Osprey, Turkey Vulture and more are included in the final Zintkala category.

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Birds: Services
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