RANGIFER HEALTH: Scientific and educational cooperation in reindeer health
There are more than 750 000 reindeer in Northern Europe (Norway, Finland, Sweden, Iceland and Greenland). Most of these animals are herded by the local indigenous populations representing an important cultural, economic and social asset for these Arctic populations.
Reindeer mortality is often linked to predation. However, many studies carried out in the last 20-30 years have identified several different health problems affecting reindeer in all northern European countries.
The lack of structured long term cooperation in studies related to reindeer health has lead to different countries working on individual health problems according to national relevance, many times on the follow-up of disease outbreaks.
RANGIFER HEALTH has four major goals:
- establish a lasting and global Nordic network of researchers working on reindeer health topics
- identify emerging research needs for the Nordic area and provide information and counselling for third partners
- promote a global teaching system for graduate students involved in reindeer health research
- increase the participation of the Nordic countries in circum-arctic research.
RANGIFER HEALTH will also make an assessment of present research and future needs in reindeer health, organise a course for PhD/Master students on reindeer health, offer scholarship and mobility programmes, and contribute to enhancing public awareness for reindeer health matters.