Environment minister increases Baffin Island caribou tags over next decade
There will be 350 caribou tags from now until June 2023
Nunavut Environment Minister David Akeeagok has added 100 tags to the total allowable harvest for Baffin Island caribou for the 2022-2023 season, and 50 tags for each of the eight seasons after that.
Through a change that took effect July 1 and runs until June 30 next year, there will be 350 tags for Baffin Island caribou instead of 250, according to a news release from Environment Department spokesperson Estela Aguilar.
Up to 75 of the tags can be used for female caribou.
After that, there will be an increase of 50 tags per season — bringing the annual total to 300, up to 20 per cent of which can be used for female caribou — until the 2031-32 hunting season, or until “new information becomes available that would require changes,” said the press release.
The Qikiqtaaluk Wildlife Board met with elders, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board and government departments in June to discuss changing the harvesting limits on Baffin Island caribou.
The Qikiqtaaluk board wanted there to be a 100-tag increase for the 2022-23 harvesting season, then 75 the next year, and 50 each year afterward until the 2031-32 hunting season.
The Government of Nunavut had proposed an increase of 50 caribou each year for the next 10 years.
Ultimately, the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board voted for the option that Akeeagok approved.
Friday’s release said the total allowable harvest limit was implemented to support the recovery of the Baffin Island caribou population while providing harvesting opportunities.