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Alaska Department of Fish and Game


Western Arctic Caribou Herd Cooperative Management Plan

— Approved March 25, 2003 by the Western Arctic Herd Working Group - Nome, Alaska

Rangifer tarandus The Western Arctic Caribou Herd is the largest of 32 identified caribou herds in Alaska. People from more than 40 small communities use it for subsistence purposes. Other important interest groups or "stakeholders" in the herd include reindeer herders, conservationists, sport hunters, hunting guides, transporters and all others who use or value the herd.

This Cooperative Management Plan presents the broad fabric of how the Western Arctic Caribou Herd is valued, and expectations on how the herd will be managed. The Caribou Working Group, a cooperative body comprised of stakeholders and supported by agency staff, is the forum where this fabric will be regularly examined, debated, and on occasion, modified. One specific intent of the plan is to avoid surprises for all the people who use or value this great resource.

The Caribou Working Group understands that these broad guidelines for management decision-making will likely evolve as circumstances in the herd ecosystem, and users' demands, inevitably change. Ultimately, the success of this new plan will be determined by its usefulness to all those who use, value, or manage the herd.

To download a pdf of the entire Management Plan click here (PDF 2,105 kB)


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