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Applying Density and Hotspot Analysis for Indigenous Traditional Land Use: Counter-Mapping with Wasagamack First Nation, Manitoba, Canada

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Document pages: 29 pages

Abstract: Traditional land-use studies display specific locations used and occupied by Indigenous Peoples in their ancestral lands to sustain their land-based livelihoods. Indigenous communities use these maps to reclaim their territories by demonstrating their current land-use and occupancy that extends vast distances beyond their reserves. To support the protection of ancestral territory against the threats of resource extraction by outsiders, we applied the density and hotspot mapping approaches to display the concentrated land use areas of 49 harvesters of Wasagamack First Nation in Manitoba, Canada. In contrast to the conventional land use mapping, which presents the land use areas as points or spots on the map, density and hotspot mapping shows areas of intensive land use and cultural significance. This paper reinforces Wasagamack Anishininews’ view that their entire ancestral territory is sacred and vital to the Wasagamack First Nation and supports their case for their traditional territory’s self-governance. If integrated with Wasagamack Anishininews’ community development goals, the density and hotspot mapping approach can facilitate land use planning for sustainable conservation of important areas for the well-being of Wasagamack First Nation.

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