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For millennia, wildfire was part of life in North America. Indigenous people used it for tradition and ceremony, to improve the health of ecosystems, and to assist with hunting and gathering. But the arrival of white settlers marked the beginning of an era in which that knowledge around fire and its role on the landscape was suppressed. Now, indigenous groups across the country are working to revive tribal relationships with fire. Today, one story of bringing fire back to the land on the Flathead Reservation in Northwest Montana. - Andy Bidwell is a fuels specialist for the U.S. Forest Service - Tony Incashola Jr. is the head of forestry for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes - Tony Incashola Sr. is a Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes elder and the director of the Selis-Qispe Culture Committee - Germaine White is an educator and former cultural resource manager for the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes

This media record is part of a series:


Fireline probes the causes and consequences of the increasingly devastating wildfires burning in the U.S. It taps into the experience of firefighters, tribal land managers, climate scientists and others to understand how we got here and where we're going. Fireline is a six part series about what wildfire means for the West, planet and our way of life.

Media Record Details

Mar 30, 2021
Andy Bidwell, Tony Incashola, Tony Incashola Sr, Germaine White

Cataloging Information

Fire & Traditional Knowledge

NRFSN number: 23855
Record updated:
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