The book, The Otter Spirit
    Author's Statement
    Preface to The Otter Spirit
    Sample Illustrations
The book, Weathered Wood
The book, Conversation with a Beaver
Art Gallery
About Judith K. Berg
External Links

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The Otter Spirit
A Natural History Story

Author's Statement

The Otter Spirit: A Natural History Story is a timeless creative-nonfiction book for all readers comprising several layers of intellectual complexity.


One layer portrays the life of a wildlife researcher (the author) in her pursuit of studying an elusive secretive animal, the North American river otter, living in its natural world.


A second layer is the discovery of some of the river otter's secrets revealed directly to the Researcher and those made known indirectly through other researchers' scientific discoveries (which are referenced in the book).


A third layer is the discovery of other species of flora and fauna that are an integral part of the otter's fresh water habitat that the otter discovers during his life's journey. Facts about some of these other species are, too, revealed in the book.


A fourth layer is the connection the Researcher makes with Mother Nature by using all senses known to Homo sapiens, along with those which go beyond.


A fifth layer is one guided by a Native American Medicine Woman of the Blackfoot Tribe who led the Researcher into the spiritual world of the Indigenous Peoples and revealed their connection to Mother Nature and Her Children.


A sixth layer is the story itself, which weaves together all the other layers into a whole. The story follows the journey of a special otter from birth to death, through his joy and ecstasy, his trials and tribulations, and the connection he made with his researcher. Poems and creative illustrations introduce each chapter; other illustrations and the Researcher's photographs appear throughout the book.


The final layer reveals the interconnectedness of all life into a whole: zoology and spiritually as one.


Yet, with the various layers of intellectual complexity woven through it, the joy of learning about the natural world is conveyed in the book's easy reading style. For some readers, that may be enough. However, the wisdom revealed in The Otter Spirit can be discovered if the discerning reader looks beyond to hear the ancient voices.


                              The Author

                                      The Researcher

                                                Judith K. Berg