Igloolik and Hall Beach win bowhead hunt: Kovic

RWOs to make final decision during teleconference this week



Delegates at a meeting of regional wildlife organiza tions in Rankin Inlet last week decided to award the 2002-3 bowhead whale hunt to Igloolik and Hall Beach, says Ben Kovic, chairperson for the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board.

The Kivalliq region will not apply for this year’s hunt, Kovic said, but if Igloolik and Hall Beach do not go ahead with the hunt this summer, the Kivalliq will re-apply for next year’s hunt.

There is no report either scientific or traditional as to the number of bowhead in the territory, Kovic said.

He did say, however, that an Inuit Bowhead Knowledge Study has been completed, but has not been reviewed by the boards. He said regional wildlife organizations need time to study it before they can act on it.

Kovic said the Qikiqtaaluk Wildlife Board still has to finalize details of the bowhead hunt with the Igloolik and Hall Beach Hunters and Trappers Associations.

Bert Dean, Nunavut Tunngavik’s director of wildlife in Rankin Inlet, said regional wildlife organizations will hold a teleconference on Thursday to make a final decision about the hunt. He added that there was a question about the Igloolik-Hall Beach application that has to be resolved.

The Wildlife Policy Advisory Committee (WPAC), a group made up of representatives of all wildlife organizations in Nunavut, was supposed to talk about it last week, but that meeting was delayed until June 20.

Abraham Qaunnaq, the chairperson of the Hall Beach Hunters and Trappers Association, declined to be interviewed, but the secretary-manager, Jason Mikki, said that Hall Beach hunters are interested in the bowhead hunt.

Nathan Qamaniq, the chairperson of the Igloolik Hunters and Trappers Association, was out hunting and could not be reached by press time.

The secretary-manager, Rosalie Aqatsiaq, said they are waiting for details of the WPAC meeting, which will give them more information about the hunt.

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