Is it possible to recreate a place that has been lost by time? The people at Wanuskewin Heritage Park in Saskatchewan believe they can.
The dream is to restore the land to the way it was when the First Nations inhabited it.
It’s been six thousand years since the bison native to these plains have been seen and the historical society of Wanuskewin, which means “Gathering Place”, is working to introduce six bison to the region. The process involves planting native plants back into the prairie so the bison can thrive.
Chris Standing, the Visitor Services Manager at Wanuskewin, says the overall goal is to return the land to its original state.
“You can’t talk about bison without plants and you can’t talk about plants without bison because bison were a keystone species for the Plains…”
Returning bison to the area would mean a restoration of the ecosystem of this historic land.
“Bringing them back isn’t just something for a cultural or tourism objective, but they’ll also restore the land.”
The park is meant to be a reminder of the sacred relationship that the Northern Plains Indigenous people had with this land and this process of restoration will bring visitors much closer to understanding their way of life.
This episode was filmed by Nick Gandolfo-Lucia and Ky Vu.
Music is by Bryan Akipa.