Striving for Co-Management
People of the Sea
Sea otters, Steller sea lions, and harbor seals have been important subsistence resources for the Chugach Alaska Natives for millennia. They are an equally important component of the ecosystems in coastal regions of Southcentral Alaska. This region stretches from the Lower Cook Inlet throughout Prince William Sound and the Lower Copper River. As subsistence practices continue to be shared with the younger generations, co-management is a key component to ensuring that marine mammals are used by future generations. Involvement of the people who live with and depend on marine mammals during the research process contributes critical and integral data to the management evaluations.
The ocean is the foundation of subsistence for all seven Tribes. Tribal Members have honored and upheld the practice of using marine mammals since time immemorial for food, cultural connectivity, traditional art, and economic development blanketed under the term subsistence. CRRC, on behalf of its seven communities, is working toward assuming the responsibility and authority to exercise our Indigenous rights to act as stewards of our traditional territories and resources. Co-management will reaffirm our commitment to respect, conserve, and manage while protecting the hunt, traditional uses, and local marine mammal habitat based on our knowledge and appropriate scientific principles.