Radioactive Reindeer Roam the Mountains of Scandinavia

Image: Facebook
Image: Facebook

Thirty years after the nuclear devastation of Chernobyl radioactive reindeer still walk the toxic Norwegian tundra.

The Chernobyl disaster occurred after a nuclear reactor exploded at a power plant near Pripyat, Ukraine in 1986, and is regarded as the worst civilian nuclear event of all time. The explosion resulted in a massive radioactive blanket that covered the vast expanses of Europe and extend to the farthest reaches of northern parts of Norway, more than 2,000 kilometers away.

Effects from the explosion covered the world in varying concentrations of toxic materials that poured from the sky with rain and snow, spreading far from the initial disaster site. The radioactive caesium that fell across the landscape was absorbed by lichen, mushrooms, and other flora that serve as animal feedstuffs. Lichen and mushrooms are especially equipped at absorbing environmental toxins and are also the primary components of a reindeer’s diet in winter.

Image: Wikipedia
Image: Wikipedia

An analysis performed by the Norwegian Agricultural Authority nearly 20 years after the incident  expressed the continued necessity of uncontaminated feed for the majority of livestock bound for slaughter.

A large reindeer population that persists around the village of Snasa in Norway serves as the life source of the indigenous Sami people. The free people live in the mountains far from the reaches of government authority and rely on selling reindeer meat for their livelihood.

The European Union enacted a limit of 600 becquerels of radiation per kilogram for animals bound for slaughter, ruling higher levels too toxic for human consumption. The Norwegian reindeer tested at 2,100 becquerels at their highest point, forcing the release of many animals back into the wild.

Today the reindeer still test positively for radiation and the Scandinavian landscape remains a poisoned tundra.

The Latest

Deep-sea Shark Boasts 25 Sets of Needlepoint Teeth

Deep-sea Shark Boasts 25 Sets of Needlepoint Teeth

With its frilled gills, layered needle-point teeth, snake-like appearance, and quick-striking abilities, this shark is one of the most engrossing creatures of the deep sea. Chlamydoselachus anguineus, most commonly referred to as the...

Giant Beached Oarfish Predict Earthquakes

Giant Beached Oarfish Predict Earthquakes

Reports of oarfish turning up on shore have historically preceded earthquakes — leaving scientists pondering how some animals may be able to forecast the future. Regalecus glesne, or the oarfish, is the longest bony...

Lonely Monkey Tries to Mate with Deer

Lonely Monkey Tries to Mate with Deer

This monkey is a real swinger, and researchers have the sex tape to prove it. The Japanese macaque was recorded trying to mount not one, but two Sika deer, and even chased away...

Spider-Eating Wasp Species Build Homes with Ant Corpses

Spider-Eating Wasp Species Build Homes with Ant Corpses

A new species of spider wasp was discovered killing live ants and collecting the bodies for home security. Deuteragenia ossarium is a recently analyzed species of spider wasp that was found hiding skeletons...

100,000 Shark Fins Discovered on Rooftops in Hong Kong

100,000 Shark Fins Discovered on Rooftops in Hong Kong

A director for the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society recently reported finding more than 100,000 shark fins drying on a rooftop in Shanghai.  Southeast Asia has become the frontrunner for capturing sharks and removing...

Scientists Discovered Why Elephants Don’t Get Cancer

Scientists Discovered Why Elephants Don’t Get Cancer

Image: Wikipedia While theoretically larger animals with more cells should be more predisposed to cancer — research shows elephants are hardly ever affected. Cancer is created when mistakes are made in cell reproduction,...

ABOUT US

Roaring Earth brings you thrilling, unique and thought-provoking stories about the natural world. From the wildest places on earth, to extraordinary encounters in our own backyards. Whether shot by a world-renowned filmmaker with the most exclusive camera equipment or by you on your smart phone or trail cam, we are sharing stories that are rarely covered and giving a voice to to the wildlife enthusiast within us all.

The Latest

More Roaring Videos