ANCHORAGE — Two native villages on Alaska’s remote St. Lawrence Island are reporting their smallest harvests of walrus in memory.
People are hurting not just in the lack of walrus meat but also in the lack of walrus tusks, according to residents of Gambell and Savoonga.
With few employment opportunities, many in the two Yup’ik Eskimo communities rely on subsistence hunting for much of the food on local tables. Many also are carvers who rely on money from the sales of ivory artwork.
“Our bills are piling up,” said Gambell tribal president Eddie Ungott.