2018 Marian Watershed Stewardship Program

2018 Marian Watershed Stewardship Program

Through September 17-21 2018, community members, members of the Wek’èezhı̀ı Land and Water Board, Wilfrid Laurier University, Golder Associates and the Department of Culture and Lands Protection, participated in a field study to examine fish health, water and sediment quality on the Marian River near Shoti Lake.

The importance of this area was expressed during the Fortune Mineral public hearings held in the summer of 2012 as well as during a Tłı̨chǫ Wildlife workshop held in Gamètı̀ in the winter of 2013.  The data collected will be used as baseline data to tell us what conditions are like now prior to any development so that we can compare to potential changes if/when development happens in the future. This was an opportunity for community members and land users to get out on the land and continue doing what they were taught by their elders. They have exchanged knowledge between scientists and themselves, as well as learned why it is important to continue with this line of work within the Tłı̨chǫ Lands.

We collected water samples to test for heavy metals and other contaminants. We also set nets to study the general health of fish. The official lab results are not in yet, but we caught 20 Whitefish and 20 Northern Pike. Ması̀ cho to traditional fish expert and land user Narcisse Chocolate from Behchokǫ̀ who provided us guidance on where to camp, set nets and collect water samples. 

The Tłı̨chǫ people use to live in this area before the people started moving into communities. They use to fish, trap and hunt in this area for a living. Our ancestors really relied on this area for the fishing and hunting (muskrat, beaver, moose, etc.). That place is really important to us because of the culture and traditional significance it has. We want to keep that area as healthy as we can for future generations to have and to use. The work we are doing is to ensure that the land is sustainable for the future generations to continue to use the land.

2018 Marian Watershed Stewardship Program from Tlicho Government on Vimeo.

For more information please contact:
Terrell Knapton-Pain
GIS Intern
Department of Culture and Lands Protection
Tłı̨chǫ Ndek'àowo / Tłı̨chǫ Government
Box 412, Behchokǫ̀, NT  X0E 0Y0
Phone:  867-392-6381 Ext 1337


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