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Alaska will purchase 1000 reindeer in Chukotka and Yakutia

  • Published in InFocus
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The Indigenous Peoples Corporation of Barrow in Alaska will purchase up to 1,000 reindeer from the regions of Russia, which will allow the industry that is in decline in the American Arctic to grow and to increase the number of domestic animals. This was reported by the Executive Director of the secretariat of Northern Forum international organization Mikhail Pogodaev.

"The Indigenous Corporation of the northernmost city in Alaska - Barrow - contacted us with a project on the revival of domestic reindeer breeding in the region. We are talking about the purchase of 500 to 1000 reindeer from Chukotka and Yakutia, Everything depends on the business plan of the project, which is being worked out now. Reindeer herding, although it is not a traditional activity of the indigenous peoples of the state (reindeer were first brought to Alaska in 1891 - TASS comment), has great prospects, since there are all prerequisites for the industry development,” said Mikhail Pogodaev.

According to him, the representatives of indigenous people living in Barrow are concerned about the decrease in the number of wild reindeer that have changed their migration routes due to active industrial development in the region. "Meanwhile, venison is traditionally included in the diet of the local population. Indigenous peoples were hunting of caribou, but now it is not so easy," explained Pogodaev, adding that the specialists of the Northern Forum traveled to Barrow to study conditions for reindeer breeding.

The local population is ready to work in the industry; there is a good fodder base. "It is important that young people are interested and ready to learn. The Saami reindeer herders from Norway, as well as reindeer herders from the Russian regions, are ready to teach the basics of reindeer husbandry,” said the Northern Forum Secretariat Executive Director.

The project is a positive example of Russia-US cooperation on indigenous issues, he added. "Our organization takes upon itself the decision of administrative issues related to interaction with the border and customs services of the two countries," he said. In addition, the Reindeer Herders of the World Association and the International Center for Reindeer Herding are the main partners in this project," Pogodaev said.