Talking about fire: Pikangikum First Nation elders guiding fire management
Document Type: Journal Article
Author(s): Andrew M. Miller; Iain J. Davidson-Hunt; Paddy Peters
Publication Year: 2010

Cataloging Information

  • aborigines
  • boreal forests
  • Canada
  • caribou
  • disturbance
  • fire management
  • fire suppression
  • forest management
  • Native Americans
  • Ontario
  • research
  • wildlife habitat management
Record Maintained By:
Record Last Modified: February 14, 2019
FRAMES Record Number: 49065
Tall Timbers Record Number: 25352
TTRS Location Status: In-file
TTRS Call Number: Journals - C
TTRS Abstract Status: Fair use, Okay, Reproduced by permission

This bibliographic record was either created or modified by the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy and is provided without charge to promote research and education in Fire Ecology. The E.V. Komarek Fire Ecology Database is the intellectual property of the Tall Timbers Research Station and Land Conservancy.


In this paper, we present how elders of Pikangikum First Nation in northwestern Ontario have drawn upon their knowledge and values associated with fire to engage in fire management planning for 1.3 million hectares of their traditional boreal forest territory. Over a period of 18 months, we engaged in collaborative research strategies that included interviews, visits to historic fire sites, and community meetings with Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (OMNR) to document the elders' understandings of fire behaviour, forest disturbance and renewal cycles, traditional controlled burning practices, and perspectives on current fire management policies. The elders demonstrated the relevance of their knowledge of fire to contemporary planning efforts affecting woodland caribou habitat and fire management at site and landscape scales within their territory. We identified three themes and six recommendations that elders confirmed as priorities for future fire management planning. The three themes include (i) the need for continuing dialogue for fire management planning with OMNR, (ii) extending traditional teachings of fire safety to community youth, and (iii) the desire to re-engage in fire management using traditional processes. © 2010 National Research Council of Canada, NCR Research Press. Abstract reproduced by permission.

Online Link(s):
Miller, A. M., I. J. DavidsonHunt, and P. Peters. 2010. Talking about fire: Pikangikum First Nation elders guiding fire management. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, v. 40, no. 12, p. 2290-2301. 10.1139/X10-177.