Presentation Title

Quantifying Food Species Produced by Ancient Clam Garden Technologies of the Salish Sea

Session Title

General species and food webs

Conference Track

Species and Food Webs

Conference Name

Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference (2016 : Vancouver, B.C.)

Contributing Repository

Digital content made available by University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Type of Presentation

Poster

Abstract

Adaptation to food systems impacted by climate change is one of the greatest challenge facing the world today. Indigenous peoples of North America have built a body of knowledge that is based on experience and awareness of the natural world around them. Since time immemorial, First Nations have shaped the environment to create and maintain highly productive food systems. One example of this knowledge is the ancient mariculture known as clam gardens, a purposely constructed rock-walled terrace that increases the habitat and productivity of traditional foods. This study aims to quantify the food species found within the rock wall structure of a clam garden compared to a non-walled beach to provide a baseline representation of the food species associated with a modified beach. This was done using low tide observational surveys to measure the abundance of edible invertebrates found within the intertidal portion of a clam garden rock wall and control site. Data analysis shows higher abundance of individual invertebrates found at the clam garden rock wall compared to the control non modified beach. The rock wall site show a significant difference in diversity of food species found compared to the control non-walled site. This research supports a growing understanding that Indigenous communities have been active managers of ecosystems and food systems for thousands of years, and highlights the positive relationship that can exist between increased ecosystem productivity and abundance of traditional foods.

Rights

This resource is displayed for educational purposes only and may be subject to U.S. and international copyright laws. For more information about rights or obtaining copies of this resource, please contact University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University, Bellingham, WA 98225-9103, USA (360-650-7534; heritage.resources@wwu.edu) and refer to the collection name and identifier. Any materials cited must be attributed to the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference Records, University Archives, Heritage Resources, Western Libraries, Western Washington University.

Language

English

Format

application/pdf

Type

Text

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Quantifying Food Species Produced by Ancient Clam Garden Technologies of the Salish Sea

2016SSEC

Adaptation to food systems impacted by climate change is one of the greatest challenge facing the world today. Indigenous peoples of North America have built a body of knowledge that is based on experience and awareness of the natural world around them. Since time immemorial, First Nations have shaped the environment to create and maintain highly productive food systems. One example of this knowledge is the ancient mariculture known as clam gardens, a purposely constructed rock-walled terrace that increases the habitat and productivity of traditional foods. This study aims to quantify the food species found within the rock wall structure of a clam garden compared to a non-walled beach to provide a baseline representation of the food species associated with a modified beach. This was done using low tide observational surveys to measure the abundance of edible invertebrates found within the intertidal portion of a clam garden rock wall and control site. Data analysis shows higher abundance of individual invertebrates found at the clam garden rock wall compared to the control non modified beach. The rock wall site show a significant difference in diversity of food species found compared to the control non-walled site. This research supports a growing understanding that Indigenous communities have been active managers of ecosystems and food systems for thousands of years, and highlights the positive relationship that can exist between increased ecosystem productivity and abundance of traditional foods.