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The Need for Indigenous Voices in Discourse about Introduced Species: Insights from a Controversy over Wild Horses

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Culture, livelihoods and political-economic status all influence people's perception of introduced and invasive species, shaping perspectives on what sort of management of them, if any, is warranted. Indigenous voices and values are under-represented in scholarly discourse about introduced and invasive species. This paper examines the relationship between the Xeni Gwet'in First Nation (one of six Tsilhqot'in communities) and wild or free-roaming horses in British Columbia, Canada. We outline how Xeni Gwet'in people value horses and experience management actions, contextualising the controversy over wild horses amidst power imbalances in the expression of environmental values. We suggest that Indigenous voices are vital to include when evaluating impacts of controversial species and developing management strategies.
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Keywords: First Nations; free-roaming horses; invasive species; management; power relations

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 December 2014

This article was made available online on 23 June 2014 as a Fast Track article with title: "The Need for Indigenous Voices in Discourse about Introduced Species: Insights from Controversy over Wild Horses".

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  • Environmental Values is an international peer-reviewed journal that brings together contributions from philosophy, economics, politics, sociology, geography, anthropology, ecology and other disciplines, which relate to the present and future environment of human beings and other species. In doing so we aim to clarify the relationship between practical policy issues and more fundamental underlying principles or assumptions.

    Environmental Values has a Journal Impact Factor (2017) of 1.852. 5 Year Impact Factor: 1.8.
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