Cultural importance of white pine (Pinus strobus L.) to the Kitcisakik Algonquin community of western Quebec, Canada

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Date: June 2013
From: Canadian Journal of Forest Research(Vol. 43, Issue 6)
Publisher: NRC Research Press
Document Type: Report
Length: 7,447 words
Lexile Measure: 1360L

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Abstract :

Abstract: Trees and forests have always played a significant role in the cultural and spiritual lives of societies. Understanding the cultural importance of tree species is necessary to develop socially acceptable forest management and restoration strategies. White pine (Pinus strobus L.) used to be abundant in northeastern North America, including on the ancestral territory of the Kitcisakik Algonquin community (western Quebec, Canada). The community is calling for restoration and sustainable management of white pine on their ancestral territory. As a first step towards this goal, key informant interviews were used to document the cultural importance of white pine to the Kitcisakik community. White pine was perceived as an important component of traditional life, providing several goods and services. White pine is featured in legends, is used as a medicine, provides habitat for flagship wildlife species, and is a prominent part of cultural landscapes. White pine is a cultural keystone species for the Kitcisakik Algonquin community. Local people point to extensive logging as the reason behind white pine decline on the ancestral territory. They suggest that mixed plantations should be used in a culturally adapted restoration strategy. Resume: Les arbres et les forets ont toujours joue un role important dans la culture et la spiritualite des societes. La comprehension de l'importance culturelle des especes arborescentes est necessaire pour developper des strategies de restauration et d'amenagement socialement acceptables. Le pin blanc (Pinus strobus L.) etait autrefois plus abondant dans les forets du nordest de l'Amerique du Nord, notamment sur le territoire ancestral de la communaute algonquine de Kitcisakik (Quebec, Canada). La communaute revendique la restauration et l'amenagement durable du pin blanc sur son territoire ancestral. Un premier pas vers cet objetif a ete franchi en realisant des entrevues avec des informateurs cles de la communaute afin de documenter l'importance culturelle de l'espece. Le pin blanc etait percu comme une composante importante de la vie traditionnelle, fournissant de nombreux biens et services. L'espece figure dans des legendes, est utilisee comme plante medicinale, procure de l'habitat a des especes fauniques d'interet, et est une constituante importante des paysages culturels. Le pin blanc est une espece culturelle cle de la communaute algonquine de Kitcisakik. Les gens de la communaute ont identifie la surexploitation des forets de pin blanc comme raison principale du declin de l'espece sur leur territoire ancestral. Ils ont suggere que des plantations mixtes pourraient etre utilisees dans une strategie de restauration culturellement adaptee.

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Gale Document Number: GALE|A335827207