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Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer (Rangifer Tarandus)Reindeer at Jimmys Farm
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Reindeer Facts

Five groups that classify all living things
A group of animals within the animal kingdom
A group of animals within a pylum
A group of animals within a class
A group of animals within an order
A group of animals within a family
Scientific Name:
The name of the animal in science
Rangifer Tarandus
The animal group that the species belongs to
What kind of foods the animal eats
How long (L) or tall (H) the animal is
1.6-2.1m (63-82in)
The measurement of how heavy the animal is
60-320kg (132-705lbs)
Top Speed:
The fastest recorded speed of the animal
80km/h (50mph)
How long the animal lives for
12-15 years
Whether the animal is solitary or sociable
Conservation Status:
The likelihood of the animal becoming extinct
Least Concern
The colour of the animal's coat or markings
Brown, White, Tan, Grey
Skin Type:
The protective layer of the animal
Favourite Food:
The preferred food of this animal
The specific area where the animal lives
Forests close to the Arctic tundra
Average Litter Size:
The average number of babies born at once
Main Prey:
The food that the animal gains energy from
Grass, Herbs, Berries
Other animals that hunt and eat the animal
Human, Bears, Wolves
Special Features:
Characteristics unique to this animal
Double layer of thick fur and large antlers of the males

Reindeer Location

Map of Reindeer Locations


The reindeer (also known as the caribou) is found in large herds in the very north of the world. Reindeer inhabit both the Arctic Tundra and the North Pole regions which include parts of North America, Europe and Asia.

The reindeer's hooves adapt to the season so in the summer when the tundra is soft and wet, the reindeer's footpads become sponge-like in order to get a bigger surface area on the damp group. In the winter, the reindeer's footpads shrink and tighten, exposing the rim of the hoof which cuts into the ice and crusted snow to stop the reindeer from slipping.

The changes to the reindeer hooves during the winter enables the reindeer to dig down through the snow to the reindeer's favourite food, a lichen known as reindeer moss.

The reindeer's coat has two layers of fur, a thick woolly undercoat and a longer-haired overcoat which consists of hollow, air-filled hairs which help to keep the reindeer warm.

The reindeer travels the furthest of any land mammal with these migrations often containing thousands of reindeer. The caribou of North America can run at speeds up to 50 mph and can travel as many as 3,000 miles a year. The most extensive migrations occur in spring and fall. The largest reindeer migrations take place in the spring and autumn when the reindeer are hungry and in search of food.

The reindeer is often an attempted target for the large predators that exist in the Arctic Circle but the reindeer is very fast and moves in enormous groups so the reindeer is not easy to catch. Arctic wolves, polar bears, brown bears, humans and the occasional shark are amongst those animals that hunt the reindeer.

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Reindeer Comments

Mrs. Chesebro's Class
"Thank you for sharing all this awesome information, so we can learn about reindeer. We are now going to write about them...Thank you!"
"This is awesome it gives so many facts! I love it , this will help me with my work on my reindeer stuff!"
karley bubb
"it rocks"
"this is very helpful! but who wrote this?"
"Great job! thanks for the information."
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First Published: 15th December 2008, Last Updated: 8th November 2019

1. David Burnie, Dorling Kindersley (2008) Illustrated Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 15 Dec 2008]
2. David Burnie, Kingfisher (2011) The Kingfisher Animal Encyclopedia [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2011]
3. David W. Macdonald, Oxford University Press (2010) The Encyclopedia Of Mammals [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2010]
4. Dorling Kindersley (2006) Dorling Kindersley Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 15 Dec 2008]
5. Richard Mackay, University of California Press (2009) The Atlas Of Endangered Species [Accessed at: 01 Jan 2009]
6. Tom Jackson, Lorenz Books (2007) The World Encyclopedia Of Animals [Accessed at: 15 Dec 2008]
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