Shoshone-Paiute Cultural Protection

Ted Howard flying

Part of the Owyhee Initiative legislation includes helping the Shoshone-Paiute Tribe protect their heritage. The tribe's cultural resources director Ted Howard is working with the BLM to monitor activities in their homelands. Howard schedules regular flights over the canyonlands in a helicopter. From the air he can relay information to BLM rangers on the ground. It's all part of the effort to protect their sacred sites and artifacts.

To most people who have never been out here in this country it's a very remote, very rough country and monitoring on the ground which I do sometimes, you might do forty miles in a day and you're not going to see a whole lot but from the air we can accomplish that in a matter of hours and with our ability to communicate with the BLM it just makes it a whole lot better for everyone.

A scenic shot from the air

To our people it is special because it's our home. It has been for thousands of years. It's a lot more than just a job. It is my time to do this. To me I think it is actually for my people you know, for the coming generations. These sites that we have, these areas are sites that we still use. We still go to these places for ceremony and for prayer and such. So it's not just a place of beauty, it's a very spiritual place to our people. So that's what makes it special.
--Ted Howard-Cultural Resources Director, Shoshone-Paiute Tribe