Saturday, November 8, 2008


Okay, this time Brian started this domesticated animals in the field meme - on purpose - and so far Geotripper, Bryan, and Life-long Scholar have followed with some photos (sheep, cows, dogs, and birds and such).

One afternoon, while I was driving from a core shed located way north of the Arctic Circle in northern Finland to a drill rig located way north of the Arctic Circle in Sweden, I encountered this Laplander reindeer, who was obviously trying to find some outcrops in the snow. Well, actually, he was trying to get into the woods to get away from my vehicle, and there were no outcrops beneath the snow, for miles and miles. It's not clear to me whether the reindeer is domesticated or wild in the north country - I think it may be somewhere in between.

This photo was taken in northern Sweden, on the other side of the river from northern Finland, in early February, at about 10:00 am local (Swedish) time.

UPDATE: Several new sets of animals have been added to this animal meme.


Anonymous said...

Your photo gave me a real sense of deja vu. I saw a nearly identical scene 2 winters ago in northern British Columbia, on an oilfield road, only there was about a dozen of the critters. The surroundings were identical. The species I saw was the woodland caribou (Rangifer tarandus caribou; see the Wiki article "Reindeer"). Mine were definitely not domestic! The Wiki article also refers to something called the "Finnish forest reindeer". I wonder if that's what you saw? It's not clear to me if "woodland reindeer/caribou" and "tundra reindeer/caribou" are strictly confined to their respective habitats, or if they wander between forest and tundra.


Silver Fox said...

I can't really tell these reindeer/caribou apart - and Wikipedia also mentions something called the mountain/wild reindeer from Finland, without photos - and there are references to these online journals that I can't access.

These are the reindeer of Santa Claus! ;)