Clam Gardens, Ancient Indigenous technology and sustainable food source | Science In Action

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by pmnationtalk on May 7, 202477 Views

Credit: Environment and Climate

Clam gardens are an Indigenous science and technology used for millennia to create ideal habitats for clams to thrive and in turn create abundant sustainable food sources for Indigenous peoples.

Indigenous research assistant student, Gavin Woodburn, takes us along as he studies an ancient clam garden used by the LIGWTDAX people in the traditional territory of the Kwiakah First Nation, on the west coast of British Columbia.

The LIGWTDAX people used clam gardens (“loxiwe” in the local dialect) since time immemorial. Large rocks were rolled down the beach to build a rock wall along the lower interdental zone, which would then be filled in with sand to create an ideal environment for clams.

Under the supervision of Dr. Mearl Ballard, Gavin combines Indigenous and western science to better understand the important role of these clam gardens, visits the site of a nearby ancient Indigenous village built on a shell midden, and interviews community Elders and knowledge keepers.

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