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Way cool facts about reindeer you may not have known.

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posted on Dec, 15 2011 @ 11:07 PM
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Its Christmas time and soon Santa will be visiting our houses bringing Christmas cheer. I figured it would be a good time to learn a little more about those flying animals that will be landing on your roof soon.


11 Things You Might Like to Know About Reindeer

1. Reindeer and caribou are the same thing. Historically, the European/Asian reindeer and American Caribou were considered to be different species, but they are actually one and the same.

2. They go by many names, all of which seem appropriate. Reindeer comes from the Old Norse word “hreinin,” which means “horned animal.” Caribou is based on the French word for “snow shoveler,” in reference to the animal’s habit of digging through the snow for food.

3. Santa’s reindeer are most likely the R.t. platyrhynchus subspecies from the Svalbard islands off of Norway. We know that because Clement C. Moore’s poem, “A Visit from Saint Nicholas,” which first introduced the world to Santa’s reindeer, describes them as tiny. The only reindeer that could really be considered tiny are the Svalbard subspecies


4. It’s not always easy to tell the sex of a reindeer. In most deer species, only the male grows antlers, but that’s not true for most reindeer. Although the females in certain populations do not have horns, many do.

5. Santa’s reindeer may or may not be female. Since reindeer shed their antlers at different points of the year based on their sex and age, we know that Santa’s reindeer probably aren’t older males, because older male reindeer lose their antlers in December and Christmas reindeer are always depicted with their horns.

6. Reindeer were originally connected to Santa through poetry. Before Moore wrote “A Visit from Saint Nicholas” (aka “The Night Before Christmas”) in 1823, no one thought about reindeer in conjunction with Santa Claus.

7. Just this year, researchers at University College London discovered reindeer are the only mammals that can see ultraviolet light. Things like white fur and urine are difficult, even impossible, for humans to see in the snow, but for reindeer, they show up in high contrast.

8. Reindeer are ideally designed for life in hostile, cold environments. Life in the tundra is hard, but reindeer have it easy thanks to their amazing evolutionary enhancements.

9. While not all reindeer migrate, some of them travel further than any other migrating terrestrial mammal. A few populations of North American reindeer travel over 3,100 miles per year, covering around 23 miles per day.

10. Reindeer played an important role in the survival of many cultures. In Scandinavia and Canada, reindeer hunting helped keep tribes alive, from the Mesolithic and Neolithic periods all the way through modern times

11. They used to live a lot farther south. While reindeer now live exclusively in the northern points of the globe, when the earth was cooler and humans were less of a threat, their territory was larger.

12. Reindeer like to eat small children. While reindeer are primarily vegetarians, it is not unknown to see them munching on the entrails of small children who wouldn't go to bed early on Christmas eve like their parents told them.

Read the full text of the article here: Mental Floss


OK, so maybe, JUST MAYBE, I made up that last one but, if it helps get your kids to fall asleep early on Christmas eve, it just may be worth your while to share this thread with the kiddies.




posted on Dec, 15 2011 @ 11:27 PM
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nice post S&F to you for this holiday cheer and u have a merry christmas



posted on Dec, 15 2011 @ 11:52 PM
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Apparently they also like to party:


www.huffingtonpost.com...



posted on Dec, 16 2011 @ 09:04 AM
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12. Reindeer like to eat small children. While reindeer are primarily vegetarians, it is not unknown to see them munching on the entrails of small children who wouldn't go to bed early on Christmas eve like their parents told them.




posted on Dec, 17 2011 @ 04:05 PM
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I was just reading down the list and found a few more shocking reindeer facts[size=0]* that people should know.



16. Reindeer get their ability to fly from drinking the blood of children on Santa's naughty list. According to some obscure legends, Santa's reindeer must drink the blood of naughty children in order to fly his sleigh around the world in one night. Some legends even go so far as to detail how Santa drags the naughty children from their beds, pulls them up the chimney to the roof and slashes their throats with a large hunting knife to feed his reindeer the blood they thirst for.


No wonder the song say "you better watch out"! This really shows the dark side of the Santa Claus legend that most people don't know about. You thought it was bad to be left out of getting presents if you made the naughty list; that's getting off easy if these legends are to be believed.

This really shows the importance of keeping off the naughty list.


Here's another related reindeer fact[size=0]*:


17. When he was a toddler, Chuck Norris ended up on Santa's naughty list one year. When Santa dragged young Chuck up to the roof, baby Chuck delivered a roundhouse kick to the lead reindeer. That reindeer's nose is still bleeding to this day. This is the REAL origin of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer. Since that time Chuck Norris is never on Santa's naughty list, no matter how much death and devastation he causes.



[size=0]*Facts may or may not have been made up by the OP. You decide.



posted on Dec, 17 2011 @ 04:36 PM
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Lol...i love these christmas threads. And now I have ammo to tell the kids why they need to stay off the naughty list...mwahahahahaha



posted on Dec, 20 2011 @ 03:19 PM
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Anyone who doubts the facts in my last post should rest assured that I had them checked by the crack team of researchers who verify each and every one of the facts presented in This highly respected website.

You know those guys never get their facts wrong.



posted on Dec, 23 2011 @ 08:29 AM
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It's interesting about number 6. Reindeer were originally connected to Santa through poetry. Before Moore wrote “A Visit from Saint Nicholas” (aka “The Night Before Christmas”) in 1823, no one thought about reindeer in conjunction with Santa Claus.

I recall some years ago reading an article about that poem at least I think it was that poem. If I recall correctly the man that wrote it was very poor and wrote it for his daughter as he didn't have money for gifts. Some time later it got published and made him a lot of money. It could have been another poem/song though. Has anyone else heard this? Cool thread, by the way.



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