Projects Directory

Inuit Observations of Land and Sea: ‘Kavisilik’ (Atlantic salmon) (A Traditional knowledge and use of Atlantic salmon by Labrador Inuit documentary)

Recipient: Torngat Joint Fisheries Board
Approved Amount: $20,000
Year Approved: 2009

This project is expected to enhance local stewardship of wild Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr resources in Nunatsiavut. In lieu of anticipated developments (hydroelectric, mining, increased shipping), local stewardship will be an important strategy for protecting and maintaining salmon, arctic charr and their habitat in the area. This project will attempt to encapsulate Labrador Inuit values, knowledge and use of wild Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr in the past and present, and to provide perspectives into the future of salmon and charr within Nunatsiavut. The video will focus on several themes relating to Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr harvest in Nunatsiavut The subsistence theme will attempt to document knowledge of seasonal rounds, rules and norms governing harvesting, local knowledge of species, identification of trends and/or patterns, harvesting methods, gear modifications, processing techniques, and the importance of sharing wildfoods within the communities. The settlement theme will provide insight into historical and contemporary mobility on the land and sea in relation to salmon and charr harvesting, and document how these patterns have changed over time. The third theme, change, will focus on identifying how salmon and charr presence and harvesting activities have changed throughout time, specifically related to environmental conditions, food security and climate change. The fourth theme, the future, will investigate how these changes will affect the future of salmon and charr presence and harvesting activities for Labrador Inuit. This documentary will be filmed both through interviews with community elders, as well as on location during the subsistence harvest. It is hoped that this documentary will be used as an educational tool for schools within Nunatsiavut, as well as a much wider audience with interests in wild Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr conservation, Inuit culture, traditional ecological knowledge, and environmental change. The documentary will also be directed at increasing local stewardship and conservation of salmon and charr resources and habitat, and enhance awareness regarding salmon and charr populations both within and outside of Nunatsiavut. Increased and continued stewardship of wild Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr in Labrador is critical for conservation of the resource, particularly with anticipated developments, such as hydroelectric, mining, and increased shipping. One of the notable strengths of this project lies in the many diverse partnering organizations with their respective managerial, financial and organizational capacities. To date, there have been no other initiatives of this type or scale focusing on wild Atlantic salmon and Arctic charr conducted in Nunatsiavut. The completion of this project will thus serve as an important benchmark for future management and monitoring efforts.