wolf management plan to support caribou recovery

 GNWT and Tłı̨chǫ Government submit joint wolf management plan to support caribou recovery.

YELLOWKNIFE (January 31, 2020) – The Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and Tłı̨chǫ Government submitted a joint proposal today on management actions for wolves on the Bathurst and Bluenose-East caribou herd winter ranges. This proposal is part of a wide range of management actions the two governments and their co-management partners are taking to support the recovery of these herds, including implementation of the Bathurst Caribou Range Plan.

 Both the Bathurst and Bluenose-East caribou herds have experienced rapid declines in recent years, and the GNWT has heard clearly from its co-management partners that more needs to be done to manage predators to support caribou during this period of decline.

 This five-year joint proposal on wolf management is based on the best available scientific, traditional and local knowledge, including the experience of wolf management programs conducted elsewhere and numerous discussions with harvesters, residents and communities.

 The joint proposal prioritizes the traditional economy of the Northwest Territories and the role of wolf harvesters in caribou recovery efforts. It proposes additional training for wolf harvesters and increased support for community-based wolf harvesting through the Enhanced North Slave Wolf Harvest Incentive Program. Research and monitoring will help improve our knowledge of wolf population dynamics and allow us to adapt our management actions over the five years to maximize impacts on caribou recovery.

 The joint proposal is now before the Wek’èezhìı Renewable Resources Board (WRRB) for review.

“Our people have been talking about the caribou for a long time. The caribou are in danger and we all need want to do more to assist in their recovery. We have had meetings with our Elders and our traditional knowledge affirms that wolves are an important animal and must be treated with great respect even when harvesting them. We are committed to the training of our harvesters for the purpose of a controlled wolf harvest using Tłı̨chǫ traditional knowledge practices in the wintering ranges of the Bluenose East and Bathurst Caribou. It is time to put stronger actions in place before it is too late for the caribou.”  - Grand Chief George Mackenzie, Tłı̨chǫ Government
“At times of low numbers, we know that caribou populations are especially vulnerable to predators. Our hope is that reducing the number of wolves on the Bathurst and Bluenose-East caribou ranges will help increase survival rates of caribou enough to stabilize their population and give them an opportunity to recover, while supporting our traditional economy. The health and abundance of all wildlife is important to the GNWT and decisions about predator management must be made with care.” - Shane Thompson, Minister of Environment and Natural Resources
Media Contacts
  • Environment and Natural Resources,  Public Affairs and Communication 
    Tel: (867) 767-9231 ext. 53046
    E-mail: ENR_Communications@gov.nt.ca
  • Tłı̨chǫ Government 
    Tel: (867) 392-6381
    E-mail: media@tlicho.com
  • Download the original News Release here in PDF.

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