Canadian tribes fished sustainably before Europeans destroyed it: study

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Canada’s native tribes have practiced sustainable fishing for a thousand years to ensure that few important species of fish did not go extinct, but their balanced system was destroyed with the arrival of European settlers in the 19th century, according to a news report. study. Residents of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, who once thrived in British Columbia, used a sex selection method while fishing, according to the study, adding that they did so to ensure that the population of Chum salmon is not declining in the coming seasons. The study by researchers and archaeologists from the University of British Columbia and Simon Fraser University was published in the journal Scientific Reports on November 10, 2021.

Archaeologists analyzed fish bones (dating back to 400 BC. They discovered that most of the remains belonged to male species. Researchers said this finding suggests that native tribes released female salmon into the water.

Main author of to study Jesse Morin, archaeologist at the University of British Columbia, told the Canadian press: “If you take a good number of males out of the system, the remaining males can still mate with the females without harming the population. A male can mate with 10 females and have as many baby salmon the following year.

The researchers analyzed fish vertebrae collected during excavations in the early 1970s. They used a DNA test to screen for Y chromosomes found only in male fish.

Study co-author Tom Royle, postdoctoral candidate in archeology at Simon Fraser University, said it was the first time that the polymerase chain reaction or PCR test has been used on ancient remains of fish.

The study indicates that the process of overfishing began with the arrival of Europeans in the Tsleil-Waututh Nation in the 19th century. Sustainable fishing methods were lost with the arrival of western settlers.

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