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Image: skʷúnkʷl̓itkax̣n̓i (shkwoon-kwleet-kaxh-nee / brown copper moth)

nłeʔképmx Territory – K’en T’em Limited Partnership and the Citxw Nlaka’pamux Assembly (CNA) are thrilled to share the discovery and naming of a new species of moth in the tridentaforma genus.

 The skʷúnkʷl̓itkax̣n̓i (shkwoon-kwleet-kaxh-nee / brown copper moth) was given its species name in nłeʔkepmxcín after consultation with nłeʔképmx Elders, Knowledge Keepers, and several CNA and K’en T’em departments. “We extend many thanks to our language keepers who have guided us in creating a new word in nłeʔkepmxcín, for identifying this recently discovered new species of moth: Maurice Michell, Amelia Washington, Bev Phillips, Marty Aspinall and Bernice Garcia”, says Madelynn Albert, nłeʔkepmxcín Manager of the CNA.

 Amelia Washington shares the phrase "qʷəcqʷecúym̓x tk nkikax̣n̓í," which loosely means warm area/warm climate moth, providing insight into the moth's origin. The naming of this species is a powerful act of cultural preservation and revitalization that acknowledges the importance of Indigenous Knowledge in biodiversity conservation.

 Discovered during joint research for the Highland Valley Copper Biodiversity Monitoring Program, this previously undescribed skʷúnkʷl̓itkax̣n̓i (shkwoon-kwleet-kaxh-nee / brown copper moth) species was represented by 64 individuals, most found at the program’s reference sites. Sample locations for the program were spread across multiple locations at Teck Highland Valley Copper Operations, in addition to the Logan Lake burn area, and three off-site reference sites.

 "Naming this newly discovered species of moth in nłeʔkepmxcín is not just a scientific endeavour; it's a testament to the enduring legacy of the nłeʔképmx and our deep-rooted connection with tmixʷ (the land)," said Nicole Johnny, Executive Director of CNA and acting General Manager of K'en T'em.

 "Through this process, we honour our language, traditions, and relationships, highlighting the importance of nłeʔképmx knowledge. It is a symbol of our commitment to upholding nłeʔképmx Knowledge, Rights, Title, and Interests. The discovery of skʷúnkʷl̓itkax̣n̓i (shkwoon-kwleet-kaxh-nee / brown copper moth) will help to ensure that future generations can continue to learn from and be inspired by nłeʔképmx history, language, and culture." 

The purpose of the HVC Biodiversity Monitoring Program’s research was to assess additional biodiversity monitoring techniques to compare reclamation progression to naturally disturbed (i.e., forest fire) and undisturbed reference sites. Various monitoring information items and samples such as game camera installations, soil samples, bio-acoustic monitoring and malaise trap samples were taken across 27 locations. Field sampling was conducted between July and September of 2023.

For more information, visit the CNA and K’en T’em’s social media channels, contact the Communications Department at communications@cna-trust.ca, or call 250-378-1864.

About K’en T’em Limited Partnership – Established in 2015, K’en T’em Limited Partnership (KTLP) is a 100 per cent Indigenous-owned for-profit corporation committed to providing the nłeʔképmx people of the eight Citxw Nlaka’pamux Assembly (CNA) Participating Bands with the resources that will help them efficiently create, manage and operate business opportunities. K’en T’em offers environmental monitoring, cultural heritage, and printing/design services. We are leaders at putting cross-cultural values at the forefront of our business while prioritizing simple, efficient, integrative solutions that meet the unique needs of our clients. and industrial projects.

About Citxw Nlaka’pamux Assembly – The Citxw Nlaka’pamux Assembly (CNA) is a not-for-profit organization that was formed in 2013 to manage and administer the agreements relating to Teck Highland Valley Copper Mine (HVC) on behalf of Ashcroft Indian Band, Boston Bar First Nation, Coldwater Indian Band, Cook’s Ferry Indian Band, Nicomen Indian Band, Nooaitch Indian Band, Shackan Indian Band and Siska Indian Band (the Participating Bands). Although the CNA was created only 10 years ago, its work is rooted in hundreds of years of history and a legacy of protecting the nłeʔképmx people and our culture, values, and territory. Headquartered in Merritt, B.C. with a workforce of over 40, the CNA provides training and job readiness along with cultural, social, and technical programming to the over 2780 members of the eight Participating Bands.

For more information, please contact:

CNA Communications