Whale Cove, Nunavut, incorporated as a hamlet in 1976, population 407 (2011c), 353 (2006c). The Hamlet of Whale Cove is located on the west coast of HUDSON BAY about 80 km south of RANKIN INLET.
Whale Cove is also known as Tikirarjuaq, which means "where many people arrive" in Inuktituk. This name reflects the community's long history as a trading centre. As far back as the mid-18th century the HUDSON'S BAY COMPANY sent sloops north from CHURCHILL, Man, to trade at Whale Cove and other sites along the west coast of Hudson Bay. In this way the HBC was able to develop a trade in whale oil, baleen, furs, leather and other local products, like "sea horse teeth" (walrus tusks), with coastal Inuit and Chipewyan. The modern community of Whale Cove dates from 1959, when the Department of Northern Affairs and Natural Resources (now Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development) encouraged Inuit in the area to move into the townsite from outlying camps. Today, most residents of Whale Cove still support themselves in whole or in part by hunting, fishing and trapping.