What are Reindeer Cyclones?

Reindeer cyclones are a defensive strategy. Females and calves remain in the center, while a fortress of males protects the herd by spinning like a cyclone.

A threatened herd ran in circles at high speed, making it almost impossible to target a single animal.

Vikings hunting reindeer in Norway some reported the difficulty of dealing with “reindeer cyclones”; a threatened herd literally ran in circles at high speed, making it almost impossible to target a single animal.

The documentary »  Wild Way of the Vikings «, a program that recreates the life of the Vikings and what nature was like in 1000 AD. C, Collect some of the most shocking reindeer cyclone scenes.

The image taken by a drone

Reindeer cyclones

The curious phenomenon was recorded by photographer Lev Fedoseyev in the Russian town of Lovozero, in Russia. In the video, which recently went viral on social networks, the cyclone they generate is observed.

Forming these tsunamis is usually a defense strategy. In this way, the animals, which live mainly in the tundra, where they can be preyed upon by wolves, create a kind of “fence” to protect the most vulnerable in their pack from predators.

In the center of these circles are usually the females and their young.

Faced with the stampede of spinning reindeer, any predator (wolf, bear, or human) would have a hard time targeting and overpowering a single reindeer, making for a formidable defense strategy.

This behaviour is also common in corral reindeer, and they do so in groups of 20 to 25 animals, according to a 2002 study published in the journal  Rangifer. The encased reindeer formed “cyclones” and were observed to run “invariably” in a counterclockwise direction, the scientists reported.

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