(Edward Madly and Rob Stevens) (Bill Matt Sr.) (Twa-le Swan) (Tana Atchley) (Brian Cossley) (Walking to Little Tshimikain) (Jessica and Brian)
Today, Jessica announced we will be going home on Saturday which is so exciting, I really miss my daughter. Afterwards, we met Warren at the middle/high school and he introduced us to many of the people we will be working with for the next two days at WellPinit. Warren talked a little bit about their wildlife growth population that has been increasing since the past fifteen years. He also explained that instead of fishing like all the other tribes their main source of food is wildlife because of various government reasons. Therefore, stating that they were a Native American tribe that was late to negotiate at Walla Walla. In fact, when all the other tribes were getting their treat in 1858 they were not able to attend the meeting and suffered so much because of that. In 188, when they negotiated with the government they ended up getting an executive order rather than a treat. Consequently, losing all their right off any area that is not on the Spokane reservation. In my opinion, that makes me really mad because Salmon is a very important to a Native American because it is one of the main food source they have. It is also part of their culture and believes.
We also meet Edward Madly a technician three who works for the wildlife department for the reservation. Next was Rob Stevens who also works with Madly. Madly explained what his job duties are and how they maintain wildlife under control. They take care of their wildlife when the animals can not feel themselves. For instance, they will provide food for them there is an immense amount of snows in the winter. They also control the wild weeds that can over populate the forest with plant that are not always wanted in specific areas.
The third person was, Bill Matt Sr. who is an Environmental officer and works for the environmental protection program culture to fair community. He is currently working to bring back salmon in to the Spokane community. He told us of an experience which he says that “touched his heart” and made him feel good about all his hard work and struggles. He started off by telling us of the impacts of the Grand Coulee Dam located on the Columbia River. After the dam was built they lost all the salmon and the community youth was not able to grow with the ability to have salmon in their life. But, now that have and are still working on creating methods and strategies to bring back the salmon they once had. Matt explained that one day when they were having their feast a little girl got a salmon piece and like it. After she eat her first piece the little girl looked around and got another one. He felt happy and successful because he accomplished what he wanted for community members to get connected to their culture and salmon foods they once had.
Chad McCrate works for the timber forest and wildlife program for the Spokane tribe. He maintains the timber, clean water act, air, and soil. McCrate is also the chairman of the wildlife community. He controls all the wildlife within the reservation specially all the elk, moose and deer. Last year he was taking care of 300 plus registered Native Americans who hunted regulating and take care of 3.4 million acres of land.
We also met Twa-le Swan who works for the tribal as the air coordinator. She mostly does out reach for the community in order to protected the citizens so that they can have a sustainable air. She told us that Washington state was the first state to have federate air rules on reservations. She also said that there was times in the past that citizens would burn their garbage every week. She stated that her department has educated and helped community members understand the harm burning garbage can do to an environment. For example, global warming, pollution for water and soil which is not renewable and also air.
We also met Brian Cossley who took us on a trip after everybody’s presentations. Cossley is a fisheries biologist who works for the water resource department at the Spokane tribe. He stated that he worked for the tribe for fifteen years and loves it. He also shared some information about the water in the creeks, rivers and ponds. Explaining situation from the past years when the water would catch on fire. Most if not all the community member were clueless of why the water was on fire. Once they found out that all along it was because of pollution and uranium contamination everything started to make sense. Uranium is still a problem to the tribe because of the two natural gas mines and one mill site. The mines and mill sites polluted the water and soil they were located on. Today the areas where the mines and mill are located at have a big hole on the ground. Because the tribe is not able to fish salmon as much as they did 75 years ago they do manmade transportation in order to have fish survive. So we went to little Tshimikain where we cough Redside shiners, speckled dace, and bridgelip suckers that help as food for the fish on the McCoy creek.
(Walking on the Little Tshimikain) (Me) (To the left is Alondra Guzman, center me, Maria Oritz)
(Jesus Cervantes catching the shocked fish.)
(This is what we found on our way to Little Tshimikain. It is burnt tires.)
(What we caught!)
(Jessica Black in Little Tshimikain.)
(Brian’s hand showing me a baby mosquito.)