Government of the Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation -- Old Crow, Yukon Territory, Canada

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Vuntut Gwitchin First Nation
Caribou Coordination

P.O. Box 94
Old Crow, Yukon
Canada, Y0B 1N0
Tel: (867) 966-3261
Fax: (867) 966-3800


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Caribou Coordination

“We as Gwitch’in people truly RESPECT the VUTZUI [‘caribou’] and take only what we need. This is our way of conserving. We are dependent on the caribou in many ways. We are grateful that the caribou come back our way, close to Old Crow every year. Sometimes they are delayed; however, we still wait patiently because the caribou have never let us down yet. Our prayers have been answered when the hunter sees the caribou on Crow Mountain and calls out “Vutsui!” When they do this, everyone gets excited. Our stomachs will be full again and we will continue to survive and be a proud and strong nation. For this, we say “Massi cho!” [‘Thank you!’]”
~ Mary Jane Moses, Old Crow, Yukon ~

Caribou Crossing
The caribou wades the creek in silence.
Through the river, rocks and barely a ripple marks the caribou passage.
The caribou travelling through north woods of blue greens.
The caribou travel through a Land covered with rich pouring of sun ripened berries of different kinds.
Caribou crossing through weaves of brilliant green colour leaves.
Plush, cool grass.
Caribou galloping through the rivers and across the plains The caribou roams the mountains, covered with carpets of flowers through the cool summers.
A tranquil window of fleeting sunlight;
after a gray floating
neither ready to concede to the slowly clearing clean blue sky.
Nights are turning chill winter’s gentle sun....
The caribou roam the country by the thousands, thundering hooves across the mountains.
~Nancy Flitt, Old Crow~

Imagine a land
Of powder blue sky
Where caribou roam
And many birds fly
Imagine a river
So wide and so clean
Imagine a people
So strong and so lean
The Vuntut Gwitchin
A proud ancient band
Live off the earth
And love this land

See now the sky
Turn ashy and black
Watch animals flee
And never turn back
A fragile ecosystem
Destroyed and gone
While loud oil rigs
Drill on and on...
Now imagine the power
You hold in your hand
To stop oil development
And save this great land.
—Poem by Monique Musick

Nunh rsi dhuui
Zze zit kkho kwa
Ezik vutzui nuhao
Tzi kei nuhuntutul
Hun gwinchya ultsya
Tinji ninttui govursijoui
Vuntut Gwitchin
Yeeno gwatsut tinji
Ji nunh kug googwindui
Tzut kuttijinidhun

Choog zze zit
Ttoh negwatchit lhidtsi gwili Chutthui lhuhao
kkinjik nuhao kwa
Nunh kug ttrigwandui
Tthui gwizik khthui jokka
Ttui dahtchi nyunli zit choi
Ji nunh khthui jokka kkuttruntyi
Kwitshi kwikettrahunatia
—Translated by Roy Moses of Old Crow

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