Metepenagiag Mi’kmaq Nation
Metepenagiag Mi’kmaq Nation, formerly known as Red Bank First Nation, is located at the head of tide of the Miramichi River. For thousands of years, Mi’kmaq communities along New Brunswick’s northeastern shore lived near tidal estuaries where tidal saltwater flows inland and creates an ecosystem for anadromous fish species such as salmon, sturgeon, gaspereau or alewife, striped bass, and eel, that seasonally move up the estuaries in large numbers. Some of these species spawned above the ‘head of tide’ and up the freshwater streams.
Plants/medicines that can be found include blueberries, black ash, birch, spruce, maple tree, cedar, muskrat root, fiddleheads, cattails. Beaver, black bear, eagle, mallard duck, moose, porcupine and wood turtle. Caribou were present until the 1930s but are extirpated.
The population is 696 people, and the community is comprised of six tracts of land totaling approximately 3,911 hectares. Although officially recognized in 1783, Metepenagiag has been home to a Mi’kmaq community for over 3000 years, making it the oldest continuously settled community in New Brunswick.