Traditional Ecological Knowledge of Capelin in Darnley Bay, NT

Regions: Inuvialuit Settlement Region

Tags: climate change, fish, traditional knowledge, community based monitoring, marine ecosystem

Principal Investigator: McNicholl, Darcy G (1)
Licence Number: 15712
Organization: University of Mantioba
Licenced Year(s): 2015
Issued: Jul 14, 2015
Project Team: Darcy G McNicholl (Principal Investigator, University of Manitoba/DFO), Gail Davoren (Supervisor, University of Manitoba ), Diane Ruben (Resource Person, Paulatuk Hunters and Trappers Committee )

Objective(s): To synthesize community-based observations over multiple years as traditional knowledge with results obtained by biological surveys conducted in the Darnley Bay nearshore habitat.

Project Description: The primary aim of this project is to synthesize community-based observations over multiple years as traditional knowledge with results obtained by biological surveys conducted in the Darnley Bay nearshore habitat. This information will contribute to understanding how Capelin function in Arctic marine food webs and how that is subject to change in a warming climate.

Local observations of Capelin are important for providing information about more recent changes in ecological interactions and environment. Therefore, five individuals will be asked to describe specific events, such as spawning or predation of Capelin that they witnessed. These individuals will be compensated for sharing their observations. Once Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) interviews and local observations are conducted and recorded the interviewer will be asked to review the information and transcribe audio information into a written format.

Once the information has been conducted the interviewer and Paulatuk Hunters and Trappers Committee (PHTC) will be asked to review the information provided and verify that the TEK is accurate to the best of the TEK holder’s knowledge. The information will then be written into a final report which will be provided to the PHTC and Fisheries Joint Management Committee (FJMC) to be made available to other communities within the Inuvialuit Settlement Region.

The aim of this study is to incorporate traditional ecological knowledge of Capelin into the development of manuscript that will become available as a Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) formal report and will supplement a master’s thesis. Five traditional ecological knowledge holders will be asked to conduct interviews and share their knowledge of Capelin and five local observers will be asked to document the occurrences of Capelin they have observed. A youth from the community will be mentored and instructed on how to conduct interviews and will conduct the interviews as a research assistant on behalf of the Principle Investigator. This study will incorporate known life history characteristics of Capelin with community-based observations in a changing Arctic environment.

The results will be provided to the PHTC as a formal DFO report, and will also be made available for distribution through the Fisheries Joint Management Committee. Presentations and community consultations will be held in Winnipeg as a part of FJMC meetings, and the PI will travel to Paulatuk in February of 2016 to present the results.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from July 13, 2015 to July 30, 2015.