Beluga Speaking Across Time

Released November 29th 2002

A film by Patricia Sims

Produced by Paul Cadieux, Michael Clark, Patricia Sims, Michael Allder, Pia Andell, Ilkka Matila, Kari Paljakka, Marko Röhr, Eila Werning, Jean Allard and Mark Wright

The elusive underwater world of the white beluga whales, their enigmatic behavior, and their unique relationship to Arctic people across time is revealed in this one hour documentary.

Near the remote shorelines of Solovetsky Island in the White Sea, 6000 year-old rock carvings of beluga whales were recently discovered where beluga whales congregate today as they’ve done for thousands of years. This small and fragile population of beluga whales is studied by a dedicated group of Russian scientist. In the Eastern Canadian Arctic the living culture and traditions of the Inuit recall the events and images of the whales depicted in the ancient petroglyphs of Northwest Russia. Today, Canada's Inuit face a collision of modern and traditional values as the threats to the health of the Arctic ecosystem put them, and the beluga whales at risk.

Beluga Speaking Across Time is a reflection on the past, when humans may have lived in communion with these whales. It is a look at the present where science, nature, conservation, and traditional knowledge may lead us to better understanding of beluga whales, their world and ours, for the future.