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Well-known Polar Bear Biologist Mourned after Nunavut Helicopter Crash

Scientists are mourning the dying of famend Canadian polar beat scientist Markus Dyck, who was among the many three on board a helicopter that crashed close to Resolute Bay, Nunavut, on Sunday.

A detailed pal of Dyck’s, Harvey Lemelin, stated he was in “denial” when he first heard the information.

 Trusted Associate

“I used to be on the lookout for affirmation. I hoped everyone was incorrect. And you then discover out that it’s actual — full devastation,” Lemelin stated.

Dyck was surveying bear populations in Lancaster Sound for the Nunavut authorities on the day the plane crashed. Two different individuals additionally died.

Lemelin stated Dyck was outspoken in his advocacy for community-based polar bear administration.

“Markus was a type of people that fell in love with the bears and extremely revered them and devoted his life to them,” he stated.

Lemelin added that Dyck advised him two weeks in the past that he was going out for area work.

“He was working for Nunavut and dealing with incorporating conventional data and scientific data and inspecting all forms of analysis and doing these essential pattern counts which are essential.”

The Igloolik-based scientist challenged environmental teams that stated the bears had been disappearing. He moreover supported together with conventional data in analysis, Lemelin added.

“What he was involved with is the flexibility of Inuit folks and Cree folks to stay with the polar bears to proceed conventional harvesting practices and to handle polar bears sustainably and respectfully, within the long-term,” Lemelin stated.

‘A personality’

Researcher Andrew Derocher, a professor of organic sciences on the College of Alberta in Edmonton, stated he labored with Dyck for a few years.

“Markus was a personality,” Derocher stated. “He didn’t undergo fools however had a wry sense of humour and all the time had a barely mischievous look in his eye.”

He stated the information of Dyck’s dying unfold all through Canada’s small polar bear neighborhood on Monday, and among the many many international researchers Dyck had labored with.

“It rocketed all over the world, the information, and simply disbelief and shock actually hit everyone,” Derocher stated.

“It’s … disappointment, and a way of loss.”

Derocher stated working within the Excessive Arctic can expose people to all types of dangers, particularly resulting from tough climate situations whereas flying.

“It’s a sort of labor [where] we all know there may be excessive hazard concerned.”

Irreplaceable abilities

Dyck started his profession in Churchill within the 90s, stated Derocher, learning the interplay of polar bears and tourism,

“which is nonetheless one thing that we don’t know very a lot about.”

Derocher stated the deceased additionally labored for the regional authorities for a number of years, describing him as by far probably the most skilled area biologists in Canada and all over the world.

He stated Dyck’s hope to do one of the best for each the area people and polar bears was on the forefront of every thing he did.

“You simply don’t substitute any person with these talent units and that breadth of data and that integration within the communities is so useful,” Derocher stated. “It’s actually onerous to precise simply how massive a loss it’s.”

The Transportation Security Board continues to be investigating the crash. Yukon Premier Sandy Silver prolonged his condolences to the household and associates of the crash victims.

“This loss is felt throughout the North, particularly amongst our conventional data, scientific and distant flight neighborhood who know first-hand the dangers related to the essential work we do for our shared surroundings and wildlife,” Silver stated in a press release.

“We’re so very saddened by this horrible accident and want the investigators good climate and protected travels as they endeavor to search out some solutions for all of us.”

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