Beluga hunt opens in parts of Nunavik

Mucalic, Nastapoka and Little Whale River estuaries remain closed

Beluga whales are seen in the summer of 2021 in eastern Hudson Bay. (File photo by Talia Koll-Egyed/DFO)

By Nunatsiaq News

Beluga hunting season is open in parts of Nunavik.

The federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans issued a notice to hunters Wednesday that harvesting can resume in some of the waters surrounding the region; however, the hunt remains closed in others.

Harvesting is open in Hudson Strait, Long Island and James Bay, north eastern Hudson Bay, Ottawa Islands and Ungava Bay.

The harvest is open in eastern Hudson Bay, but hunters are limited to 13 belugas per year.

Hunting remains closed in Mucalic Estuary, Nastapoka Estuary and Little Whale River Estuary. A Nunavik-based wildlife management group has been working recently to make the case for lifting the ban in the Mucalic Estuary. It’s a ban that has been in place for decades.

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans cites a lack of data and the animal’s protected status for the ban, but a DFO spokesperson told Nunatsiaq News in December the department is open to working with Inuit on wildlife management.

Hunters hoping to head out on the water are encouraged to contact their local hunting, fishing and wildlife associations for any more specific additional questions.


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