This section provides some general guidelines and resources. We do not update it regularly. Safety is your organization’s responsibility.

Bears in the Gwich'in Settlement Area

Bears are common throughout the region, so it is important that your team is well versed in bear safety. Mountainous areas, including the Dempster Highway near the Yukon/NWT border, require particular caution. Mountains provide prime food resources for bears. A lot of caribou are also harvested there and when hunters field dress their meat, they typically leave the entrails behind. Some bears have come to associate humans with easy meals and are quite aggressive towards people. There are also reports of bears that move toward the sound of gunfire because they associate it with food. Be aware that noise-based bear deterrents like bear bangers may actually draw bears to you in this area. Please be very cautious.

Regardless of where you are working, it is wise to have a trained wildlife monitor in your group. If you need to hire one, please contact the local Renewable Resources Council. When hiring a wildlife monitor, you should establish what equipment each party is responsible for providing (rifle, ammunition, rubber boots, hip waders, etc).

If you have problems with wildlife, you are encouraged to report them to NWT Environment and Natural Resources at 867-678-6650.

Community Research Interests

GRRB staff members regularly meet with members of the communities in the Gwich’in Settlement Area (GSA) and their Renewable Resources Councils (RRCs). While at these meetings, we make note of any Research and Management Interests that are raised.

Why is this list valuable to researchers?

The list includes every interest the GRRB has heard directly from either community members, RRCs, or management plans. It is valuable because it offers researchers insights into the project interests of community members from the GSA. We encourage sharing it broadly. Please note that we do not monitor the status of the items on the list. Some topics may have active research underway or could have already been addressed. Because the Research Interests List can include topics outside of the GRRB’s mandate, which would not necessarily qualify for GRRB in-kind or financial support, we encourage researchers to review our Research Priorities (see below).

Winter Travel

Survival gear should always be carried in the winter, even if you are only driving between communities. It can be extremely cold here and there is minimal traffic on the highways.

Damage to a research camp in the Richardson Mountains that occurred when a Grizzly Bear breached an electric fence. Photo by Édouard Bélanger (GRRB).
Damage to a research camp in the Richardson Mountains that occurred when a Grizzly Bear breached an electric fence. Photo by Édouard Bélanger (GRRB).
Community members travel by snowmobile to gather camera trap data as part of the Divii (Dall’s Sheep) Project. Photo by Édouard Bélanger (GRRB)
Community members travel by snowmobile to gather camera trap data as part of the Divii (Dall’s Sheep) Project. Photo by Édouard Bélanger (GRRB)

Communication

Cellular service is good in all communities but almost non-existent everywhere else. It is wise to carry a satellite phone or inReach device.

Emergency Phone Numbers

In an emergency, dial 911 for assistance (or 867-920-0911 on a satellite phone). Information on 911 service in the NWT can be found here.

Department of Environment and Natural Resources (ENR) Contacts

Reporting Line Phone Email
Regional Office – Inuvik 867-678-6650 ENR_Beaufort-Delta@gov.nt.ca
Spills (fuel, oil, chemicals) 867-920-8130 spills@gov.nt.ca
Forest Fires 877-698-3473
Wildlife Emergency 867-678-0289
Big Game Vehicle Collision, Poaching 866-762-2437
Species at Risk Sighting wildlifeobs@gov.nt.ca
Visit ENR’s website for a complete list of their reporting lines and contact information for their regional offices.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) Contacts

During working hours, contact the Inuvik office. After hours, call the ENR Report-A-Poacher line. They will forward any fisheries concerns to DFO.
Reporting Line Phone
Regional Office – Inuvik (working hours) 867-777-5500
ENR Report-A-Poacher (after hours) 866-762-2437