The vast territory of Eeyou Istchee Baie-James is home to an impressive diversity of animal and plant species. Nature is at the heart of Cree traditions and is the source of life and nourishment for past, present, and future generations.
Halfway between the boreal forest and the taiga
Since James Bay is a fragile northern environment and home to many species, every Captain and every visitor must act as a custodian of these natural surroundings.
Wiinipaakw Tours has brought together the best current ecotourism practices to protect and preserve the fauna and flora in the waters and on the islands of James Bay for future generations.
BE AMAZED BY WILD ANIMALS
With a little luck, you’ll catch sight and admire beluga, woodland caribou, beavers, seals, polar bears, and many other species during your stay with Wiinipaakw Tours. Maybe you’ll see some of the hundred twenty migrating bird species that live on or migrate to the coast each year, including Canada goose, Eurasian teal, and Black scoter. Certain species are on the brink of extinction and are protected under Canadian law, including Red knot and Common nighthawk.
SAVOUR OUR PLANTS AND BERRIES
In addition to its magnificence, the region’s vegetation is a key part of Cree cuisine. Small fruit such as cranberry, cloudberry, and crowberry are favourite ingredients in typical Cree dishes. The region’s berries are used to make delicious jam that goes wonderfully well with bannock and Labrador tea!
Goose break and moose break: thriving ancestral traditions
Every spring, Cree families and community members gather to hunt geese as part of the traditional goose break. This celebration set in the heart of nature enables elders to teach youth how to hunt. It’s also an opportunity for passing down deeply rooted ancestral values and the Cree language.
In autumn, the Cree gather once again – but this time to hunt moose as part of the traditional moose break, which is also an opportunity to share knowledge and time-honoured practices.
Ready for an adventure in harmony with the environment?