Russia celebrates Wild Reindeer Day
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Russia celebrates Wild Reindeer Day

February 18, 2022

The largest population lives in the Central Arctic.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. Every year on February 17, Russia celebrates the Wild Reindeer Day. The date of the ecological holiday is not accidental: on this day in 2015, wild reindeer were included in the Red Book of the Arhangelsk region, and in 2020 they were included in the Red Book of the Russian Federation.

The main purpose of the holiday is to draw attention to the problem of reducing the population of these artiodactyl animals and to preserve their habitats. According to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), the number of wild reindeer in Russia is no more than one million heads. Moreover, the largest population lives in the Central Arctic – in Taimyr, Evenkia, Yakutia – a total of about 480 thousand animals.

“The Taimyr population is unique on a global scale: it is considered the largest migratory population of mammals, passing more than three thousand kilometers during the year”, experts emphasize.

In recent years, scientists have sounded the alarm because of the decline in the number of reindeer. According to the latest data, the Taimyr population has almost halved in seven years. If in 2014 the total number of animals was approximately 417 thousand, then in 2021 there are only about 241.6 thousand of them left.

In order to preserve and increase the animal population, scientists proposed to legislatively reduce the norms for hunting wild deer – set a limit at 2.5 percent for the next five years and distribute quotas for public lands near settlements with the main population of indigenous peoples.

However, not only humans can cause the disappearance of wild reindeer: due to climate change, animals change the migration timing, which causes the death of young deer, who, having not had time to get stronger, try to cross the rivers.

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Text: Victor Tsaryov, Photo: Denis Kozhevnikov

February 18, 2022

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