Kugaaruk means “little stream” in Inuktitut, and it is also known as Arviligjuaq, meaning “the place of many whales.” The community of 770 inhabitants is located on the southeastern shore of Pelly Bay off the Gulf of Boothia, about a 2-hour flight from Yellowknife. Residents are the descendants of the ancient Thule people and they have lived in the area around Kugaaruk for over a thousand years. Kugaaruk is home to some world-renowned Inuit artists.

Information collected during the Nunavut Wildlife Harvest Study shows that caribou, arctic char, lake trout, and ringed seals are the most frequently harvested species. Furbearers, such as the arctic fox and the arctic wolf, are also commonly harvested. Waterfowl harvests reported by Kugaaruk residents were minimal. Twenty harvesters from Kugaaruk are currently registered in the Community-based Monitoring Network pilot study.

For more information on the community of Kugaaruk, please visit http://nunavuttourism.com/regions-communities/kugaaruk

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Baker Lake

Baker Lake, or Qamani’tuaq (“where the river widens”), is Nunavut’s only community that is not located on the coast. The hamlet of about 1,700 people sits on the shore of an impressive lake of the same name, near the mouth of the Thelon River.

Baker Lake residents harvest caribou from five different caribou herds and rely heavily on the variety of fish and bird species found in and around the local water ways.  During the 1996-2001 harvest study, Baker Lake hunters also reported harvests of arctic wolves, grizzly bears, muskoxen, foxes, wolverines, hares, ptarmigan, as well as a few seals, a muskrat, and a moose.

For more information on Baker Lake, please visit http://www.nunavuttourism.com/regions-communities/baker-lake



Taloyoak, or Talurjuaq, translates to “large caribou hunting blind. The community was also known as Spence Bay until 1992.  It is the most northerly mainland community in Canada. Taloyoak has a population of just over 1,000 people, most of whom are descendants of the Thule who occupied the area for more than 1,000 years. The hamlet was permanently established in 1948.

Taloyoak residents harvest caribou from the Ahiak herd, and fish from six major rivers that have annual char runs. The community also hosts many species of migratory birds, and the waters are home to lake trout, white fish, and cod.  The community’s high reliance on country food was evident in the data collected during the 1996-2001 Nunavut Wildlife Harvest Study. In addition to fish and caribou, the community depends on seals, musk-oxen, birds, and whales for subsistence.

For more information on Taloyoak, please visit Nunavut Tourism


Past Community-based Monitoring Network participants:

Clyde River: 2015-2018

Arviat: 2012-2015

Cambridge Bay: 2012-2015

Sanikiluaq: 2012-2015

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