Reindeers get protective reflective gear

Written by on February 17, 2014 in Critters vs Humans vs Critters - No comments

Cars and trains hitting reindeer are a big problem in Norway.

In one report last December, 24 reindeer were killed and others injured after they were hit by a train.

The Local, an English-language daily, reports that deer herders have been lobbying for wildlife fences alongside train tracks.

Some 4,000 elk and reindeer have been killed in train collisions over the past decade.

Now there’s perhaps a solution.

A pilot program is outfitting 10,000 reindeer with special biodegradable reflector cuffs so they are all shiny and visible to cars and trains.

And how cool is this? The reflectors are made of corn so they biodegrade when left in the environment.

Reflectors have been tried before. In the past, deer herders used reflective tape glued on to the antlers. But the glue didn’t keep the reflectors on in the cold.

There was even an attempt by Finnish herders to spray the reindeer with reflective spray. But that just made the problem worse as the spray made the reindeer’s fur more susceptible to the cold.

Other tactics that failed included erecting “disco poles” that, you guessed it, emitted loud noises and flashing lights along busy roads in the hopes that the reindeer would be scared away and not succumb to dancing to the Bee Gees.

h/t:  The Local

Photo credit: The Local

 

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