Ways we respect the caribou: Hunting in Teetl'it Zheh

Regions: Gwich'in Settlement Area

Tags: policy development, caribou, traditional knowledge, hunting, hunting regulations

Principal Investigator: Wray, Kristine E J (3)
Licence Number: 14289
Organization: University of Alberta
Licensed Year(s): 2008 2007
Issued: Feb 28, 2008

Objective(s): The objective of this study is to: document elder/hunter perceptions of caribou health and population; document traditional practices for respecting caribou for comparison with government hunting regulations; and to explore the use of traditional knowledge and scientific data by hunters in decision making about where, when and with whom to harvest.

Project Description: The objective of this study is to: document elder/hunter perceptions of caribou health and population; document traditional practices for respecting caribou for comparison with government hunting regulations; and to explore the use of traditional knowledge and scientific data by hunters in decision making about where, when and with whom to harvest.

Research methods involve individual interviews and observation of participants before and after the caribou hunt. The investigator will use methods laid out by the Community-Based Participatory Research methodology. A research assistant has been hired in Fort McPherson (Christine Firth) and is working to help identify potential interviewees, transcribe interviews and interpret data. Researchers will work with interviewees and organizations to interpret study results (i.e. through the steering committee meetings). Opportunities to review all reports will be given prior to distribution. Information about caribou hunting behavior may be useful for partner organizations in policy and management decision-making.
An educational activity for students in Grades 9 -12 will be developed including the sharing of knowledge about “ways we respect caribou”.

Results will be communicated through interim reports and a plain language final report. Consent of interviewees will be sought prior to reports/materials being made public. A Master’s Thesis, academic and other publications will also be produced.
Fieldwork will be conducted from March 01 to August 31, 2008 in Fort McPherson.