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Overview of Climate and Aboriginal Adaptation in the South Saskatchewan River Basin before the Settlement Period
Daschuk, J. and G. Marchildon 2005 English

This paper provides a brief overview of climatic change and human adaptation in the SSRB from A.D. 800 to the beginning of European settlement period at the end of the 19th century. The analysis is based on the variables identified by Smit et al. in their ?Anatomy of Adaptation to Climate Change and Variability? (2000). Prior to the adoption of introduced forces such as the horse and the European-based market economy, the SSRB, though more prone to drought than in the 20th century, served as a refuge for aboriginal groups whose home territories were unsustainable. Susceptibility to negative climatic stimuli increased as a consequence of the integration of the region into the global economy. By the end of the 19th century, the bison herds, the bedrock of the aboriginal economy for millennia, were extinct and with the exception of the Blackfoot people of Southern Alberta, First Nations were expelled from the SSRB to make way for European agrarian settlement of the region.

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