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Reindeer herd drowns in icy Lapland waters

TT/Christine Demsteader · 13 Nov 2009, 11:56

Published: 13 Nov 2009 11:56 GMT+01:00

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Reindeer herders in the region were taking around 3,000 animals across the river, a route that has been safely crossed on previous occasions.

”The ice suddenly gave way and hundreds of reindeer fell into the water,” said Bertil Kielatis, chairman of the Sirges Sami village in Jokkmokk.

”Now we are working to recover the animals that have drowned,” he added.

Sirges is Sweden’s largest Sami village with around 300 members and 90 herders.

The incident means a substantial financial loss for the herders and disaster for the local community.

”It’s a tragedy in many ways,” Kielatis added. ”Not only for the reindeer that suffered but for the herders who were helpless to save their animals.”

The reindeer were lead by herders who drove snow-mobiles and were assisted by a helicopter.

Story continues below…

Kielatis added there was nothing unusual about the route or the way the herding was carried out.

”This is how we usually work nowadays when leading a large herd up or down from the mountains,” he said.

TT/Christine Demsteader (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

13:03 November 13, 2009 by karex
This is dreadful. I feel sorry for the herders and the animals.

For those of you who still doubt there is global warming, here is a direct result. Another victim in a few years will e the famous Ice Hotel: it will no longer be possible to carve the right type of ice to build it soon.
13:26 November 13, 2009 by livinginsweden
I feel sad for the Sami villagers and their herds .. but please don't exploit this accident into another global warming hysteria. There are many local and other factors that determine why this accident happened .. and to immediately draw the conclusion from a distance (that it is due to global warming) without first hand knowledge is .... so unscientific.
13:31 November 13, 2009 by Nemesis
This will hit the Sami community very hard.

Global waming is slowly making all the lakes in the north of Sweden very dangerous in Winter.

I remember a time when it was not unusal to see a large lorry go straight across a lake or even use a frozen river as a road. I have not even heard of that in the last decade.

This sort of event could decimate the economy of the Sami over the next decade if winter travel routes for herds are disrupted due to global warming, across all of northern Sverige, northern Norge and northern Finland.

I really do hope a solution can be found to this problem so as to maintain the Sami and there ancient European culture.

This is definately a wake up call.
13:36 November 13, 2009 by spy
Poor beasties.
14:10 November 13, 2009 by just a question
It's not the global warming. The world is going to another glacial era.

Wait and see.
14:28 November 13, 2009 by karex
@just a question

Actually, you are also right. One of the effects of global warming is to stop the global tidal "conveyor belt" which moves the ocean waters around. It works like this: cold water sinks in the polar regions and creates ovement, as the tides pass through warmer regions and the water starts to warp up, it begins to rise, keeping the conveyor belt moving.

When the water stops moving, it begins to evaporate in huge amounts on the surface. It also starts to cool. It will continue to cool more and more until a new ice age happens. This is of course cyclical. But we have been speeding it up considerably.
14:58 November 13, 2009 by PageyGB
ooh, yes, it said that in "The Day After Tomorrrow!.
16:07 November 13, 2009 by duncs
Global warming?! has no-one else noticed that the new catch phrase is global climate change? This is because it has been realised that the earth is now cooling due to reduced sun spot activity. All these hippy celebrities pushing the subject should really do some investigation first.
17:48 November 13, 2009 by karex

Actually, it's called "Earth Investigated" and can be found in National Geographic, if I'm not mistaken.

As for the ice hotel under threat, you can check it out in many places. One such:



Reduced sunspot activity is cyclical and short-lived. It will mask other effects for a while.
19:27 November 13, 2009 by wxman
Rudolph knew better. This is the inevitable result when you spend all day "playing reindeer games".
21:20 November 13, 2009 by Clever-Dick
Poor reindeer's, by the way check out the impact of the global warming in China

01:12 November 14, 2009 by Weekend_warrior
I hope Rudolph is ok :)
00:49 November 15, 2009 by getinformed
I feel sorry for the Samis and the reindeer and for those who are so poorly misinformed. We are NOT going towards a new ice-age we are currently experiencing a warming of the planet which is abnormal from the natural cycle.

And for those of you who have seen "the day after tomorrow" Perhaps you should see "Age of Stupid" instead! (www.ageofstupid.net/) and Hot Cities (www.rockhopper.tv)
21:47 November 16, 2009 by Nifty
Some moron failed to check the thickness of the ice.End of story.
16:39 November 17, 2009 by Stormysmoker

Nice one, somebody finally called it right!

Global warming, climate change, anyone for man made equilibrium?
01:34 November 18, 2009 by entry
"A study of Climatic Variability from 1660-2009 - A Detailed look at Europe"

There are pretty pictures(graphs) for the global warming enthusiAsses that can never seem to read beyond bold headlines.
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