Cheticamp: A Cape Breton Coastal Community's Survival (Documentary)

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Cheticamp, like many small rural communities around the world is experiencing changes as youth move to larger urban areas seeking employment. The decline in population is having a rippling effect on the economy and residents need to consider new forms of economic development in order for the community to sustain itself. At the same time a changing climate is impact how local resources can be used currently and into the future.


This documentary examines life in Cheticamp, told through the stories of local people. We reflect on what Cheticamp was like in the past, the changes that have occurred over the past 60 years, and end with some suggestions of how Cheticamp can continue to flourish into the future. This documentary hopes to enlighten viewers to the changes that are occurring in small rural communities across Canada, leaving them to consider how new ways of looking at problems can help with similar challenges elsewhere.

Producers: Dr. Corrine Cash and Andre Bourgeois
Directors: Dr. Corrine Cash and Andre Bourgeois
Editor: Alyssa Gallant
Camerman (Interviews): Roy Deveau
Aerial Cinematographer: Jeff MacKinnon

Additional Videos Provided By:
Alyssa Gallant
Nicole Leblanc
Yvette McPhee
Ronald Bourgeois
Videezy

Photos Provided By:
Alyssa Gallant
NS Archives

With Speical Thanks To:
Adonay Guerrero

and With Thanks To:
CHNE TV/ACL
Les Trois Pignons
Frog Pond Cafe
Sunset Gallery
GAMS
Archie Doucet
AMAC
Alyssa Gallant
Ron Bourgeois
William 'Bill' Roach
Claudia Roach
Alphonse Bourgeois
Roy Deveau
Erich Muntz
Charles 'Charlie Dan' Roach
Gretchen Noyes-Hull, PhD
Tresa Leblanc-Doucet
Paul Gallant

Music:
Sprag Session - An Dro (Sprag Session)
Maxim Cormier - Fork In The Road (Maxim Cormier)
Ben Miller and Anita MacDonald - Anita's Solo (A Day At The Lake)
Miller|MacDonald|Cormier - Angus MacKinnon (South Haven)
Colin Grant - Jenn & Anthony's (Fun For The Whole Family)
Maxim and Gervais Cormier - Beeswax (Cape Breton Guitar)

Additional Music By:
Jason Roach
Brent, Leanne, and Gaston Aucoin
Ronald Bourgeois
Colin Grant

Released: July 2018

Download — Cheticamp: A Cape Breton Coastal Community's Survival (Documentary)

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💬 Comments on the video
Author

that explains why us madelinot and cheticamp people have the same French accent. incredible. we're the same people....

Author — chais jo

Author

i love that small town. i didnt know about the "mi careme". very nice documentary. Thanks Corrine.

Author — RiShark Tíburon

Author

There is a lot of ground-fish here, it's only closed down for political reasons. Open it back up, that's how you get our youth to come back home.

Author — Nathan Burns

Author

29:17 is the view from our cottage. We built it years ago when I was a crab fisherman fron Antigonish. Both the cottage and the crab fishery are still in our family. Cheticamp is a wonderful place and not quite so dark as this video describes in my view.

Author — sgtcrab1

Author

Cod follow cold water, the only time they are in warm water is if the col water is over populated. The only way this is self serving is that I know this can work. I do not own a Cod license and neither does my Dad; my fishing career is all but done. I personally do not need a Cod fishery, I am advocating for the Atlantic Community at large. I know what I'm talking about here, I didn't read about it I lived it. I worked aboard the data gathering vessel for 5 years and outside of that I made multiple trips with DFOs 2 top biologists of the 2000s. (Jocelyn Chouinard and Doug Swain)

I engaged both men in multiple conversations, I witnessed their disturbed reactions when we filled the hold with fish in less than half an hour; I've seen the way the Alfred Needler fished, I've been privy to the bearings and times of year that tests were conducted. It was fixed from the get go. They conducted their tests in times and areas where no fisherman would have ever set his nets unless paid by government to do so.

This is one topic on which I know more than most people in the World as very few people were participating by the time I came around. Many of those who fished before me have passed on. You on the other hand, read something somewhere.

The only environmental change which occurred is that in the early 90s we would see maybe a half dozen seals per year (I started just a few years after the European protests) to being able to count dozens at any time while we were towing towards the end of it in 2009. Even now, as I walk the beach or participate in the shell fishery sightings of multiple seals are the norm.

Change is inevitable and I cannot comment on all of it because I lack the knowledge. What I do know, unequivocally, is that there is an abundance of Cod and Seals which can easily be exploited in a sustainable fashion just as it was for centuries before Big Oil hoodwinked a bunch of environmentalists into protesting the seal hunt.

The way to our future is paved with our traditional way of life.

Author — Nathan Burns

Author

A great teaching tool for Schools of Planning and Schools of Sustainability Studies.

Author — Larry Swatuk

Author

Cod prefer colder waters, traditionally they were fished in this area in April and November.
I've got over 20 years on the water. We got out of Greysole and Flounder fishing on account of always catching "too much Cod" which, if you understand each species is indication enough. A Cod net is geared up with floats as Cod prefer to swim a fathom or 2 (6 to 12 feet) about ground. Sole or Flounder bury themselves in the mud therefore the nets are equipped with chains and most of the floats come off. The net is also towed at 1/2 to 1/3 the speed.
If you direct for flat fish but catch "too much Cod" then that is proof enough that they are there in abundance.
Experts from other fishing nations have all testified that the DFO employs faulty methods in obtaining data.
It is my opinion that the "Cod Collapse" was created in order to clear the way for oil drilling and there is insurmountable proof to back up this claim.

Author — Nathan Burns

Author

There is so much cod right now that we catch it in our lobster and crab traps at times of the year that there traditionally was no cod. Not many cod were ever landed in July but the crab traps are full of them now.

Author — Nathan Burns

Author

It's a very good video. But I stopped watching at 17 mins because the volume of the background music shot up louder than the interviews. What's the point of watching it if I can't hear the interviews over the music?

Author — Stephanie Anne