News

Sharing the Bounty

A news story discussing the "Traditional Mutual Understanding" between Cree and Innu First Nations giving Innu hunters permission to harvest up to 300 caribou from the Leaf River herd on Cree territory this winter. The story outines some of the protocols to be followed in the hunt.
23 February 2022 | Toronto Star

N.W.T. wildlife officers investigate possible caribou poaching near MacKay Lake

A news story about potential caribou poaching north of Yellowknife, NWT. A helicopter patrol along the winter road system spotted some caribou being hunted inside a prohibited zone set up to protect the Bathurst caribou herd.
18 February 2022 | CBC North

Caribou cams give insight into secret lives

A news story describing research conducted on the Fortymile caribou herd that involved fitting caribou with GPS collars that also incorporated video cameras. The cameras captured snapshots of what the caribou were feeding on, and other behaviours.
16 February 2022 | Alaska Native News

Genetic legacy of last glaciation influences reindeer's seasonal migrations

This news release is about a new study that cross referenced GPS tracked movements and genetics of caribou, and found genes thought to be associated with migratory behaviour. The genetic differences are thought to spring from a genetic division during the last ice age, when populations were physically separated by ice sheets. The study authors say this has implications for possible loss of migratory behaviours if genes are lost through shrinking populations.
11 February 2022 | Science Daily

Cree and Innu sign agreement over caribou harvest in Cree territory

A news story about the agreement between Cree and Innu First Nations allowing Innu communities to hunt caribou on Cree territory. The Innu communities can take 2300 caribou this year under the terms of the agreement. the caribou come from the Leaf River herd. The George River herd on which the Innu communities had previously relied is at only one percent of it's peak recoreded population in 1990, and hunting the herd is banned. "For us, this community hunt will not only meet a need for our Elders' food security, but also perpetuate a sharing relationship that dates back to time immemorial," said Chief Mike McKenzie, Chief of the Innu community of Uashat Mak Mani-utenam and spokesperson for the nine Innu communities.
31 January 2022 | CBC North

The biggest land use plan in the world: how Nunavut is putting mining and conservation on the map

This longer story is about the Nunavut land use plan. The draft plan designates key caribou habitat such as calving areas as "limited use" effectively closing them off to industrial development such as mining. The plan has been in development for fifteen years, and is now considered close to completion.
18 January 2022 | The Narwhal

Boreal Caribou Range Management plan in development

A news story about the ongoing consultations led by the Government of the Northwest Territories to produce five regional management plans for boreal caribou conservation. The story says the plans will map out caribou habitat into basic, enhanced and intensive protection zones, with the intention of keeping 65% of caribou habitat across the NWT undisturbed. Consultations on the plan will continue during 2022.
17 January 2022 | Inuvik Drum

The ‘new’ face of environmental racism in Quebec

This opinion piece written by the Chief of the Lac Simon First Nation and the head of Greenpeace Canada says the Quebec government's delay in enacting a caribou recovery strategy is envionmental racism. The piece argues that the consequence of the government's inaction "... is the oppression and impoverishment of Indigenous Peoples, forcing them to change their diet and lifestyle, resulting in communities that suffer physically, mentally and spiritually. It’s not just the caribou that are endangered in the boreal forest, it’s the delicate balance that is essential to life."
14 January 2022 | The Narwhal

Manitoba responding to first case of chronic wasting disease

This news story refers to the a first case of chronic wasting disease being found in Manitoba. The brain disease affects several kinds of deer. The province licenced a special hunt of deer in the area where the infected animal was found, but no further cases were reported. 
11 January 2022 | Ontario out of doors magazine

Thousands of reindeer gone astray in Lapland

This news story tells of the displacement of domesticated reindeer from northern Finalnd caused by climate-change driven icing events. The reindeer have travelled south to access food. Separating the reindeer into their original herds is a big chore for the herders, and puts a strain on the viability of the traditional occupation.
6 January 2022 | barents observer