Murmansk regional authorities want a permanent ban on hunting.
Wild reindeer on the central and eastern part of the Kola Peninsula, in particular within the Terek and Lovozero districts, is suggested to be listed in Russia’s so-called Red Book, enacting to protect rare and endangered species.
In a meeting of the commission on endangered flora and fauna last week, Murmansk regional authorities decided to include the eastern wild reindeer on their proposal to the federal list, Murmanski Vestnik reports.
In 2014, the western population of wild reindeer on the Kola Peninsula was included in the Red Book. The western reindeer are found in the areas from south of Murmansk city towards the border to Finland along the Lotta river and further sourth towards Kovdor district. Poaching, however, still happens and the population has not increased since 2014.
“If the Ministry of Natural Resources of the Russian Federation supports our proposal, then the entire population of wild reindeer in the Murmansk region will be in the Red Book. Today’s decision will eliminate hunting forever,” Deputy Governor Yevgeny Nikora told Murmanski Vestnik after the meeting he chaired.
Kola Peninsula is the only area in Europe north of the Arctic Circle with wild reindeer. In Scandinavia, there are wild reindeer in southern Norway, with the northernmost populations in the area around Dovre and Rondane.
Related stories from around the North:
Norway: Urgent action needed to protect Arctic Ocean, WWF says, The Independent Barents Observer
Russia: Russia plans fenced parks to confine reindeer herding in Arctic, The Independent Barents Observer
Sweden: Indigenous reindeer herders request emergency aid after drought, wildfires ravage Sweden, Eye on the Arctic
United States: Communities wrestle with shark-bite mystery off Alaskan coast, Eye on the Arctic