Knowing Nanuut: Bankslanders knowledge and indicators of polar bear population health

  • Author / Creator
    Slavik, Daniel
  • Polar bears (Ursus maritimus, Nanuut) are a culturally and economically important species to the Inuvialuit. As a result of climate change, the Arctic is experiencing rapid ecological changes with the potential for profound impacts on polar bear populations. The objectives of the thesis were to document Inuvialuit knowledge of polar bear population health and to identify the indicators used by Inuvialuit to assess polar bear health. Using community-based participatory research methodologies, participant observation, and semi-directed interviews with twenty-seven locally identified community experts and knowledge holders from Sachs Harbour, NWT, this thesis documents Inuvialuit knowledge of polar bear population health within seven categories of indicators: body condition and behavior; breeding success; diet and feeding behaviors; distribution and movements; habitat conditions; population abundance; and unique observations. This research finds that Inuvialuit of Banks Island have an accumulated wealth of traditional knowledge about polar bears and this can contribute to monitoring of polar bears.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Science
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
    • Department of Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology
  • Specialization
    • Rural Sociology
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Dr. Brenda Parlee (Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Dr. Sean Robertson (Native Studies)
    • Dr. Naomi Krogman (Resource Economics and Environmental Sociology)