Ottawa Islands
Native name:
Arviliit or Arqvilliit
Ottawa Islands
Ottawa Islands
Ottawa Islands
Ottawa Islands
Geography
LocationHudson Bay, Nunavik Marine Region
Coordinates59°30′N 80°25′W / 59.500°N 80.417°W / 59.500; -80.417Coordinates: 59°30′N 80°25′W / 59.500°N 80.417°W / 59.500; -80.417
ArchipelagoCanadian Arctic Archipelago
Total islands24
Major islandsBooth Island, Bronson Island, Eddy Island, Gilmour Island, J. Gordon Island, Pattee Island, Perley Island
Highest elevation549 m (1801 ft)
Administration
Canada
Nunavik
Demographics
PopulationCurrently Uninhabited, access and harvest rights by Nunavik Inuit
Source: Ottawa Islands at Atlas of Canada

The Ottawa Islands (Inuit: Arviliit or Arqvilliit in Inuktitut meaning "place where you see bowhead whales")[1][2] are a group of currently uninhabited islands situated in the eastern edge of Canada's Hudson Bay. The group comprises 24 small islands, located at approximately 60N 80W.[3] The main islands include Booth Island, Bronson Island, Eddy Island, Gilmour Island, J. Gordon Island, Pattee Island, and Perley Island. The highest point is on Gilmour Island, which rises to over 1,800 ft (550 m).[3] Located a short distance off the northwest coast of Quebec's Ungava Peninsula, they, like the other coastal islands in Hudson Bay, were historically part of the Northwest Territories, and became Crown Land upon the creation of Nunavut in 1999. Nunavik Inuit have occupied these islands since time immemorial and gained constitutionally-protected harvest and access rights under the Nunavik Inuit Land Claim Agreement signed in 2007.[4][5]

Geography

The Ottawa Islands are situated on the barren and rocky east coast of Hudson Bay.[6] By 1610 Hudson Bay had been explored and named by Henry Hudson in his quest for a Northwest Passage.[6] It wasn't until 1631 when Luke Foxe (or Fox) on a voyage from "Vltimum Vale" (Cape Henrietta Maria), near 57° 40', indicated that "Mr. Hudson calls those islands by the name of 'Lancaster's Iles.' "[7] According to historian T.H. Manning, there is no other record of Henry Hudson naming islands in that region.[8] A little further north, near 58° 5', Capt. Foxe says "Wee came by a small Iland at clocke one, the highest I haue seene since I came from Brook Cobham; the deep 70 fathome. I named the Ile Sleepe."[9] Foxe named the islands just north of Lancaster Isle, "Ile Sleepe". According to Manning, the name, having eventually changed to "Sleeper Island" or "The Sleepers", could be used "for the islands between and including Lancaster and Ottawa Islands."[8]

Canada, Routes of Explorers, 1497 to 1905
Canada, Routes of Explorers, 1497 to 1905

Further coordinate readings

Fauna

The Ottawa Islands and the southwardly Belcher Islands are a breeding ground for "the Hudson Bay subspecies of the Common Eider".[10] In 1765 commercial whaling of bowheads was started by Churchill-based sloops of the Hudson's Bay Company with some whales being harvested in the Ottawa Islands.[11] The islands are important habitat for polar bears[12] and many waterfowl. The waters surrounding the islands are important habitat for seals, walrus and bowhead and beluga whales.

See also

References

  1. ^ Issenman, Betty. Sinews of Survival: The living legacy of Inuit clothing. UBC Press, 1997. pp252-254
  2. ^ "Arviliit". Avataq Cultural Institute, The Nunatop Project.
  3. ^ a b Columbia Gazetteer of North America Archived 2005-12-05 at the Wayback Machine, accessed May 30, 2007
  4. ^ "Nunavik Inuit Land Claims Agreement" (PDF).
  5. ^ "NILCA". Makivik Corporation.
  6. ^ a b "Hudson Bay." The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, Sixth Edition. Columbia University Press., 2003. Answers.com 26 Jan. 2007. Accessed 01-26-2007.
  7. ^ Miller Christy, ed., "The Voyage of Capt. Luke Fox of Hull and Capt. Thomas James of Bristol, in search of North-west Passage, 1631-2", (Hakluyt Soc., Vols. 88, 89, 1894), p.368. Taken from; Manning, T.H., "Explorations on the East Coast of Hudson Bay". The Geographical Journal, Vol. 109, No. 1/3 (Jan. - Mar., 1947), pp. 58-75, doi:10.2307/1789902, Republished by JSTOR, Accessed 01-26-2007.
  8. ^ a b c Manning, T.H., "Explorations on the East Coast of Hudson Bay". The Geographical Journal, Vol. 109, No. 1/3 (Jan. - Mar., 1947), pp. 58-75, doi:10.2307/1789902, Republished by JSTOR, Accessed 01-26-2007.
  9. ^ Miller Christy, op. cit. p.369. Taken from; Manning, T.H., op. cit.
  10. ^ "National Marine Conservation Areas of Canada: Canada's National Marine Conservation Areas System Plan: James Bay: The Wildlife". Parks Canada Archived 2007-02-17 at the Wayback Machine, Last Updated: 2006-11-17, Accessed 01-26-2007.
  11. ^ Government of Canada - Fisheries and Oceans Canada. "Harvesting" Chapter 14.5.3, page 14-19. Information originally sourced from (Flaherty 1918; Newspaper Clipping in PAC, MG 29, A58, Vol 8.,File 5 in Reeves and Mitchell 1987). Accessed 06-11-2007
  12. ^ "Nunavik Inuit Knowledge and Observations of Polar Bears" (PDF). Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board.

Bibliography