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'Here in Inuvik, we have had lots of experience with companies operating in the range and around the range,' says Inuvik mayor Floyd Roland. ((CBC))

The Mayor of Inuvik says he's puzzled by all the attention the reindeer reserve is getting.

Last fall, the federal government opened up lands in the Inuvialuit Settlement Region.

Companies interested in drilling for oil and gas were asked to nominate blocks of land and water they'd like to explore.

Among the areas included was the reindeer grazing reserve near the communities of Tuktoyaktuk and Inuvik.

Floyd Roland says the federal government's invitation for oil and gas companies to nominate reserve land for bidding shouldn't be a surprise.

“Here in Inuvik we have had lots of experience with companies operating in the range and around the range,” Roland says. “In fact, if you look at specific licenses filed; they are throughout the Delta area north of Inuvik. It's not new to us here."

While the Canadian government allowed companies the opportunity to nominate the land for auction, no one asked to bid on the reindeer reserve.