News Article | February 21, 2017
A clay model of the head of Kennewick Man, is shown in this undated file photo, based on a 9,300-year-old skull found in July 1996 in a park along the Columbia River in south-central Washington, is shown at Columbia Basin College, in Richland, Wash. The likeness was made by sculptor Tom McClelland and anthropologist Jim Chatters. —After a 20-year legal battle between scientists and Native American groups, the 9,000-year-old remains of the Kennewick Man have finally been laid to rest. The first part of the ancient man's remains, which turned out to be one of the oldest and most complete ever found in North America, was discovered in 1996 on the banks of the Columbia River in Kennewick, Wash. The remains were excavated for study by scientists, who thought that the Kennewick Man, as he came to be called, might be a descendant of people who migrated from Asia into North America even before the populations that were the ancestors of modern Native Americans came to the continent. Many local Native American tribes disagreed, claiming that the remains belonged to one of their ancestors. This claim launched a court battle in an attempt to get the Kennewick Man, whom the tribes refer to as the Ancient One, reburied according to their religious customs, as would be required by the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. Genetic tests in the early 2000s, however, led scientists to conclude that Kennewick Man was more closely related to people from Japan and Polynesia, causing the local tribes to lose federal cases in 2002 and 2004. But DNA technology has improved a great deal since then, and in 2015, a new genetic analysis found that the scientists' initial conclusions about Kennewick Man's ancestry had been incorrect. Researchers then tried to determine which Native American groups he was most similar to, as the Christian Science Monitor's Pete Spotts reported at the time: Of the small number of samples available, Kennewick Man was closer to native American groups from the Northwest. Among those, the closest link was with the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, one of five tribal groups in the region involved in efforts to repatriate the remains. The researchers offer two scenarios that could have led to the genetic differences that exist between Kennewick Man and the Colville tribes. They could have split from a common group about 700 years before Kennewick Man lived. Or the Colville group could be direct descendants, with an additional influx of other genes working their way into the genomes of the Colville group during the past 8,500 years. The team's results didn't allow them to pick an out-and-out winner among these two scenarios, says Rasmus Nielsen, a geneticist from the University of California at Berkeley and another member of the team. But, he adds, there is enough evidence to suggest that the second scenario may be the right one. "We always knew the Ancient One to be Indian," Aaron Ashley, a board member of the Umatilla tribe, told The Los Angeles Times. "We have oral stories that tell of our history on this land, and we knew, at the moment of his discovery, that he was our relation." In light of the new DNA analysis, Sen. Patty Murray (D) of Washington state introduced a bill in 2015 to repatriate the remains. The bill was signed into law by then-President Barack Obama. On Saturday, more than 200 members of the Umatilla, Yakama Nation, Nez Perce Tribe, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, and the Wanapum Band of Indians, met at a secret burial location on the Columbia Plateau, according to The Seattle Times. The Ancient One was laid to rest with songs "very close" to what would have been sung during Kennewick Man's time, Chuck Sams, the communications director for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, told the Times. "A wrong had finally been righted," Mr. Sams told the Seattle Times. He also pointed out that over 100,000 sets of Native American remains still belong to collections across the United States. In the 20 years since the skeleton was discovered, a great deal has been learned about the Kennewick Man. Researchers determined that he weighed 163 pounds at the time of his death, and stood approximately 5 feet, 7 inches tall. He was right-handed, and appeared to have subsisted on a diet of fish or marine mammals, though he hunted various land animals as well. Before his death, at about age 40, there is evidence that Kennewick Man survived two major injuries, including a projectile point embedded in his hip bone. And for now, it seems, his story has come to a close. "The return of our ancestor to Mother Earth is a blessing for all Yakama people," reads a statement from the Yakama Nation. "The Ancient One (also known as the 'Kennewick Man') may now finally find peace, and we, his relatives, will equally feel content knowing that this work has been completed on his behalf."
Kozma J.M.,Yakama Nation |
Kroll A.J.,Weyerhaeuser Company
Condor | Year: 2010
We examined the association of temporal and spatial factors with nest survival of Western Bluebirds (Sialia mexicana) nesting in tree cavities in ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests along the east slope of the Cascade Mountains, Washington. All study areas were managed for timber production through planned harvests or postfire salvage logging. Bluebirds laid a mean clutch of 5.3 ± 0.1 (SE) eggs (n = 131), and successful nests fledged an average of 4.5 ± 0.2 young (n = 85). Using a model-selection framework, we found that nest survival was a function of clutch size and treatment and that there was a quadratic effect of nest age. Daily survival rates decreased after the onset of incubation, then increased through the nestling period, and were higher for clutches with ≥5 eggs and in stands that were burned and salvaged. Survivorship over the entire period for clutches (n = 131 nests) with ≤4, 5, and ≥6 eggs was 0.39 (95% CI: 0.11, 0.65), 0.61 (95% CI: 0.34, 0.80), and 0.71 (95% CI: 0.46, 0.85), respectively. Vegetation variables associated with nest sites did not significantly affect nest survival. Predation accounted for the most nest failures (34% of nests). We suggest that parental defense of nests accounts for the quadratic effect of nest age, with adult bluebirds defending nests more aggressively as nestlings approach fledging, and that bluebirds laying larger clutches are older, more experienced birds, resulting in greater nest survival. © The Cooper Ornithological Society 2010.
Kozma J.M.,Yakama Nation |
Kroll A.J.,Weyerhaeuser Company
Condor | Year: 2012
Woodpeckers are particularly susceptible to habitat changes resulting from forest management because of their reliance on trees and snags for nesting and foraging. However, the influence of habitat variables on the reproductive success of woodpeckers has received less attention than it has in other avian taxonomic groups. We estimated nest-survival rates for the White-headed Woodpecker (Picoides albolarvatus), Hairy Woodpecker (P. villosus), and Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus) in managed ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests along the eastern slope of the Cascade Range in Washington, 2005-2010. Using a model-selection framework, we found that the most supported models included terms for a quadratic effect of date and habitat type for the Hairy Woodpecker, a negative effect of percent shrub cover for the White-headed Woodpecker, and a negative linear effect of date and habitat type, a negative linear effect of snag density, and a positive linear effect of tree density for the flicker. Survival rates over the entire cycle (laying + incubation + nestling stages) were 0.51 in unburned stands and 0.41 in burned stands for the Hairy Woodpecker, 0.70 for the White-headed Woodpecker, and 0.41 in unburned stands and 0.80 in burned stands for the flicker. In both habitats of our study survival rates of Hairy Woodpecker nests are lower than those reported in other studies, while those of White-headed Woodpecker nests are comparable to those reported in other areas of that species' range. © The Cooper Ornithological Society 2012.
Narum S.R.,Columbia River Inter Tribal Fish Commission |
Zendt J.S.,Yakama Nation |
Frederiksen C.,Yakama Nation |
Campbell N.,Columbia River Inter Tribal Fish Commission |
And 2 more authors.
Transactions of the American Fisheries Society | Year: 2011
Both environmental and genetic factors influence anadromy in rainbow trout Oncorhynchus mykiss, but the genetic mechanisms that contribute to migratory selection are not well understood. In this study, we used a limited genome scan approach to identify candidate genetic markers associated with anadromy in 10 populations of O. mykiss from the Klickitat River,Washington. From an initial panel of 96 single-nucleotide polymorphism (SNP) markers, we identified 3 SNPs that were significantly associated with anadromy after accounting for underlying population structure and selective environmental conditions. Univariate logistic regression of allele frequencies and residency/anadromy were also significant, and thus three SNPs were considered candidate markers associated with anadromy (Omy IL6-320, Omy LDHB-2 i6, and Omy ndk-152). A multivariate logistic model was developed from the allele frequencies of these three markers to predict the potential for anadromy in natural populations. This model was applied to eight additional populations of O. mykiss to evaluate its utility. The results of this study indicate that these markers are strong candidates for association with anadromy in O. mykiss in the Klickitat River, but further testing is needed to evaluate this association across more of this species' range. Common-garden experiments may also help clarify the association of these candidate markers with the smoltification phenotypes of individual fish. © American Fisheries Society 2011.
Dittman A.H.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration |
May D.,University of Washington |
Larsen D.A.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration |
Moser M.L.,National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration |
And 2 more authors.
Transactions of the American Fisheries Society | Year: 2010
It is well known that salmon home to their natal rivers for spawning, but the spatial scale of homing within a river basin is poorly understood and the interaction between natal site fidelity and habitatbased spawning site selection has not been elucidated. Understanding the complex trade-offs among homing to the natal site, spawning site selection, competition for sites, and mate choice is especially important in the context of hatchery supplementation efforts to reestablish self-sustaining natural spawning populations. To address these questions, we examined the homing patterns of supplemented Yakima River spring Chinook salmon Oncorhynchus tshawytscha released from satellite acclimation facilities after common initial rearing at a central facility. Final spawning location depended strongly on where fish were released as smolts within the upper Yakima River basin, but many fish also spawned in the vicinity of the central rearing hatchery, suggesting that some fish imprinted to this site. While homing was clearly evident, the majority (55.1%) of the hatchery fish were recovered more than 25 km from their release sites, often in spawning areas used by wild conspecifics. Hatchery and wild fish displayed remarkably similar spawning distributions despite very different imprinting histories, and the highest spawning densities of both hatchery and wild fish occurred in the same river sections. These results suggest that genetics, environmental and social factors, or requirements for specific spawning habitat may ultimately override the instinct to home to the site of rearing or release. © Copyright by the American Fisheries Society 2010.
News Article | January 13, 2016
In barely three decades, a new study warns, Canada’s indigenous peoples will face a catastrophic loss in the fisheries that are the lifeblood of their communities and have helped sustain them for more than a millennium. The study, released Wednesday, predicts that the wild salmon and herring the First Nations tribes use for food, ceremonies and trade will swim north with dozens of other species as the climate changes, the waters off the coast of British Columbia warm and the fish pursue colder areas. According to the report, authored by researchers at the University of British Columbia and published in PLOS One, half of these communities’ fisheries will be lost by 2050 unless global carbon emissions are mitigated and the pace of temperature change slowed. “Climate change is likely to lead to declines in herring and salmon, which are among the most important species commercially, culturally, and nutritionally for First Nations,” said Lauren Weatherdon, who conducted the study as a graduate student at the university. “This could have large implications for communities who have been harvesting these fish and shellfish for millennia.” [Salmon are vanishing in the Pacific Northwest, and so is native culture] Estimates are that marine species will leave native fishing areas at a rate of six to 11 miles a year between now and the middle of the century. The availability of salmon along Canada’s western coast is expected to decline by nearly 20 percent. The study projects that the $28 million to $36 million in revenue the tribes derived from fishing between 2001 and 2010 would fall by up to 90 percent depending on whether future emissions are low or high. First Nations tribes are descendants of people who lived in Canada thousands of years before Europeans arrived. Like Native Americans in the United States, they were mislabeled as Indians by explorers who mistook the New World for India. Those along the coast live off the ocean, and fish they harvest animate their religious customs and traditions. From Canada’s 617 indigenous tribes, the study focused on 16 of the 78 First Nations along the north Pacific coast. The terrain there is a rich environment with “diverse coastal landscapes… shallow rocky reefs, kelp forests, sandy near shore areas and estuarine ecosystems” that offer complex and extremely productive marine food webs. That includes Pacific halibut, rockfish, flounder, crabs, scallops, clams and shrimp and prawns. Weatherdon and her team “identified species’ preferences to environmental conditions that are defined by sea water temperature,” the study explains. They measured salinity levels, sea ice concentration and habitat types and looked at how the abundance of fish that preferred the areas was changing. Their projections were based on models drawn from that data. “With unmitigated climate change, current fish habitats are expected to become less suitable for many species that are culturally important for British Columbia’s coastal communities,” said co-author William Cheung, associate professor at UBC and director of the Nippon Foundation Nereus Program there. Noted Weatherdon, who is now a researcher at United Nations Environment Program World Conservation Monitoring Center, “The shifts in the distributions of these stocks are quite important because First Nations are generally confined to their traditional territories when fishing for food, social, and ceremonial purposes.” Canada’s natives aren’t alone in facing a future without fish. A sustained drought in Oregon and Washington is contributing to the loss of salmon for tribes in those states. [If the shad fishery was this bad in the 1770s, George Washington wouldn’t have survived Valley Forge] “We’re very worried,” said N. Kathryn Brigham, chair of the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission in Portland, Ore. The commission helps manage fisheries for the Yakama Nation and the Warm Springs, Nez Perce and the Umatilla tribes in Oregon, Washington and Idaho. Last year, an estimated quarter-million salmon — more than half of the spring spawning run up the Columbia River — perished as a result of diseases in water that warmed during their migrations to and from the Pacific Ocean and Puget Sound. Cool streams in the river basin were 13 degrees warmer than the 60 degrees preferred by salmon when Brigham and state officials expressed alarm in July. “The bleakest, most dire outcome is if this drought is sustained for a couple more years like California,” said Greg McMillan, science and conservation director for Oregon’s Deschutes River Alliance. Some salmon populations “could go extinct.” Federal officials want to track every fish that arrives at U.S. ports The remote Alaskan village that needs to be relocated because of climate change
News Article | February 21, 2017
In a private ceremony on Saturday lead by several Northwest tribes, the Kennewick Man was reburied, ending a 20-year-old legal battle between scientists and native tribes. For the unfamiliar, scientists were of the opinion that the Kennewick Man's bones - touted to be the "most important human skeleton ever found in North America" - must be examined for research. However, the Native American tribes were against this notion and wanted to lay them to rest. The two decade-long saga came to an end over the weekend following the remains of the 9000-year-old Paleoamerican being finally interred. Nearly 30 Native Americans from five different tribes traveled to Burke Museum in Seattle on Feb. 17. This was the place where the skeleton had been preserved for the last two decades. The tribe members retrieved dozens of boxes containing the remains of the Kennewick Man and on Feb. 18, more than 200 people of the tribes, such as the Yakama, Umatilla, Nez Perce, Colville and Wanapum, gathered at an undisclosed location on the Columbia Plateau to bury the Ancient One. The somber ceremony was completed with various traditional songs. "The Ancient One ... may now finally find peace, and we, his relatives, will equally feel content knowing that this work has been completed on his behalf," shared JoDe Goudy, chairman of the Yakama Nation Tribal Council. The remains of Kennewick Man were spotted in 1996. It was a summer day when two college students discovered the human skull along the Columbia River in Kennewick. Being one of the most-studied sets of ancient remains in the world, the discovered skeleton's hip was entrenched with a stone point. The archaeologists unearthed around 300 pieces of bone in the coming months to complete the skeleton. The scientists performed several tests on the discovered skeleton and at the time of discovery believed that the bones were unrelated to Native Americans. However, they were curious to learn about the origins of the remains. They even suggested that the Kennewick Man was the offspring of people who migrated from Asia to North America. The people migrated into the continent before individuals who were responsible for modern-day Native Americans. Moreover, scientists compared the Kennewick Man's DNA with that of people originating from Europe, Asia and even America. The study's results were published in 2015, which revealed that most of the DNA matched with most Native Americans. The findings affirmed the beliefs of the tribe members that the Kennewick Man was their relative. Scientists and Native Americans fought over the custody of the bones of the Ancient One for over two decades. The tribal people opposed further research on the remains, suggesting that it would violate their religious and cultural rights. They were in the favor of reburial of the remains. A prolonged legal battle followed, with the Native Americans losing the legal battle in 2004. The court ordered the researchers to continue their study of the remains in the museum. However, tribes were able to visit the remains at the time of some ceremonies. In December 2016, President Obama signed a legislation as reported, allowing the native tribes of eastern Washington to take away the remains of Kennewick Man for reburial, putting an end to the battle. © 2017 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.
Kozma J.M.,Yakama Nation
Western Birds | Year: 2014
I compared characteristics of sites of Western Bluebird (Sialia mexicana) nests in natural tree cavities in burned and unburned logged ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests along the east slope of the Cascade Range of Washington, 2003-2008 and 2010. Tree density and percent debris cover (litter and large woody debris) were greater at nest sites in unburned stands because fire kills live trees and consumes woody debris, and they were the only characteristics in which nest sites in burned and unburned forests differed. In burned stands cavities were oriented primarily east, whereas in unburned stands they were oriented randomly. East-facing cavities may be thermally advantageous early in the day, keeping eggs warmer when the incubating female is away foraging. Most snags containing bluebird nest cavities (73%) were advanced in decay and had broken tops. Of the cavities whose original excavator was known, 27% were excavated by the Hairy Woodpecker (Picoides villosus), 12% by the White-headed Woodpecker (P. albolarvatus), and 5% by the Northern Flicker (Colaptes auratus). Only one nest was located in a non-excavated cavity. Of the 38 second nests, 76% were in the same cavity as the first, even though 38% of these first attempts were unsuccessful, suggesting that suitable cavities are limiting. My results suggest that bluebirds use similar nest sites in burned and unburned ponderosa pine stands and that abandoned woodpecker cavities are critical to the Western Bluebird in these managed forests.
Kozma J.M.,Yakama Nation
Western North American Naturalist | Year: 2011
In this study, I examined the composition of managed ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) forests used by nesting White-headed Woodpeckers (Picoides albolarvatus) along the eastern slope of the Cascade Range in Washington. I sampled trees and snags using the point-centered quarter method to assess species composition, tree and snag density, and stand basal area in 16 forest stands containing White-headed Woodpecker nests. All stands had a history of timber management and 2 had been burned and salvage-logged. Mean live-tree density (≥ 10.16 cm dbh) was 182.3 trees · ha-1 (SE = 13.52), mean snag density (≥ 10.16 cm dbh) was 11.5 snags · ha -1 (SE = 1.92), and mean stand basal area was 17.2 m2 · ha-1 (SE = 1.58). Ponderosa pine had the highest importance value ( = 220.9, SE = 17.25) of any tree species in all but 2 stands. Mean dbh of ponderosa pines was 33.0 cm (SE = 0.26) and ranged from 26.1 to 50.2 cm within stands. Mean density of ponderosa pine was greatest in the 20.3-30.5 cm dbh size class and lowest in the 50.8-61.0 cm and >61.0 cm dbh size classes. Tree density was up to 5.3 times greater than densities believed to be typical of ponderosa pine forests prior to fire suppression. Snag densities were within the range estimated for historical dry forests of the eastern Cascades, yet only 50% of all snags sampled had a dbh >25.4 cm. Although White-headed Woodpeckers are considered strongly associated with old-growth ponderosa pine, my results suggest that they may be more adaptable to using forests dominated by smaller diameter trees. © 2011.
News Article | April 29, 2016
The Kennewick Man was first discovered in 1996 near the Columbia River in Kennewick, Washington. The U.S. Army Corps handled the Kennewick Man's bones because they were found on federal land. The scientific community wanted to analyze the bones but Native American tribes insisted that the remains should be buried immediately. This led to years of legal battle and in 2004, the scientists won and proceeded with the analysis. A recent report confirmed that Kennewick Man was, indeed, Native American. This 9,000-year-old skeleton is among the oldest and most complete set discovered in North America. And now, the decades-long battle between science and ancient beliefs won in the favor of the native tribes. The Kennewick Man will finally be given a Native American burial. "Obviously we are hearing an acknowledgment from the Corps of what we have been saying for 20 years. Now we want to collectively do what is right, and bring our relative back for reburial," said JoDe Goudy, the chairman of the Yakama Nation. Five Native American tribes claimed connections to the Kennewick Man, namely Yakama, Wanapum, Umatilla, Colville and Nez Perce tribes. After scientists finally confirmed the origins of the Kennewick Man, these tribes will work together to give their "relative" a proper tribal burial. In some ancient cities like Athens, it is illegal to mess with discovered human remains. In the modern world, there are many stories about archeological discoveries that are seen as "grave robbing." Believers argue that these ancient people have been buried by loved ones with care and that it is a crime to unearth them thousands of years later, reuse them into scientific experiments and put them on displays in museums. This strong stance is often rooted in religious beliefs. Observations of indecency often drive the outrage. There is also much discomfort in unearthing an ancient human being from his or her resting place just to satisfy scientific curiosities. There are some bioarchaeologists who believe that ancient human remains should not be returned to the ground. Some also believe that destroying the discovered ancient human remains is the "forensic equivalent of book burning." The slow repatriation of many ancestors' remains of Native American tribes is said to be rooted in these views. Despite the evidence of federal laws for the return of ancestral remains, many ancient bones are still locked up in store rooms. "We've come to a point in American society that we recognize we do science for people. Their concerns sometimes have to come first, even if it's a matter of sacrifice from the scientific community's side," said Indiana University bioarchaeologist Larry Zimmerman, an advocate for the protection of Native American remains. © 2016 Tech Times, All rights reserved. Do not reproduce without permission.