SFU scientists study wild reindeer population in Norilsk

SFU scientists study wild reindeer population in Norilsk

November 14, 2023

Monitoring has not been carried out on our territory for two decades.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. In 2024, specialists from the Siberian Federal University (SFU) will begin research on the little-studied population of wild reindeer in the Norilsk industrial region.

At the Russia exhibition and forum, Siberian Federal University presented a project to study the wild reindeer population in the territory of Eastern and Central Taimyr and Evenkia, which has been implemented since 2020, TASS writes.

“We have now completed this project. We plan to begin studying the wild reindeer population in the Norilsk industrial region in the western part of the Taimyr peninsula. This population is poorly studied both in terms of numbers and composition”, said Petr Savchenko, head of the SFU Biodiversity Monitoring Center.

He noted that the project will begin in 2024 and will take two years. Monitoring in the Norilsk industrial region has not been carried out for 20 years.

Studying the deer populations of Eastern and Central Taimyr and Evenkia, scientists came to the conclusion that the population, which was previously called Taimyr, spends most of its time on the territory of Evenkia.

“We have proven, with the help of satellite transmitters, that now, due to global climate change, deer spend seven to nine months in Evenkia. The animals use Taimyr only as a place for calving and summer feeding”, the scientist noted.

He emphasized that climate warming is leading to the tundra greening and the pastures composition and structure changing, as well as an increase in the number of midges, which forces deer to move into the Evenkia forests and foothills.

As the specialist noted, the population of deer living in the Krasnoyarsk region makes up about half of the total number of the species in Russia and is the largest in Eurasia. However, its numbers fluctuate. At the beginning of the century, it amounted to 800-900 thousand animals due to the degradation of hunting and commercial farms; now it has decreased to 320-330 thousand animals.

Based on the area of pastures, the optimal number should be 480–580 thousand.

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Text: Victor Borodin, Photo: Denis Kozhevnikov

November 14, 2023

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