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Jun 28, 2022

We discuss the effectiveness of combining traditional Indigenous ecological knowledge and Western science for conservation and restoration initiatives on this episode.

Our first guest is Dr. Gary Paul Nabhan, an ethnobotanist at the University of Arizona, who discusses an ancestral food of the Comcaac people in the state of Sonora in Mexico: eelgrass.

Nabhan explains how eelgrass is making a big comeback thanks to the people's restoration work, and is retaking its place at the table as a sustainable source of food for the Comcaac community while gaining international culinary attention in the process.

Host Mike G. also speaks with Dr. Sara Iverson, a professor of biology at Canada’s Dalhousie University, about a research project called Apoqnmatulti’k that aims to better understand the movements of lobster, eel, and tomcod in two important ecosystems on Canada’s Atlantic coast.

Iverson explains why those study species were chosen by the Mi’kmaq people and why it’s so important that the project combines different ways of knowing, including Western science and traditional Indigenous knowledge, which a Mi’kmaq elder dubbed 'two-eyed seeing.'

Further reading about Apoqnmatulti’k here:

• “In Canada, Indigenous communities and scientists collaborate on marine research”

Listen to episode #145 (June 1, 2022) of this podcast to hear about related Indigenous aquaculture traditions via your favorite podcast provider, or here:

• “Podcast: Indigenous, ingenious and sustainable aquaculture from the distant past to today”

Episode artwork: A conservationist working on a seagrass restoration project. Image courtesy of Seawilding.

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