Nunavik’s fall beluga harvest closes for the season
Regional wildlife authorities waiting for approval of a new five-year management plan
Nunavik’s hunters might have enjoyed a fall beluga hunt, but it was short-lived.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada closed the beluga harvest in the region on Nov. 13, saying “the total allowable take for the season has been reached.”
The DFO had approved an interim beluga management plan for Nunavik at the end of October, giving the green light for the harvest of 12 Eastern Hudson Bay beluga whales. The goal of the interim decision was to allow for a short harvest season before freeze-up.
With Nunavik’s 2017-20 beluga management plan having expired, the season had been closed since July 29 after hunters reached a temporary quota set by the DFO.
The Nunavik Marine Regional Wildlife Board wildlife management board submitted a new plan to the DFO in May—one that attempted to better balance Inuit harvesting rights and conservation of the vulnerable Eastern Hudson Bay beluga stock.
The wildlife board expects to receive a decision from the DFO on the complete, five-year management plan by Nov. 28.