The DNA test decides the future of Helsinki’s young migratory reindeer

The DNA test decides the future of Helsinki's young migratory reindeer

The young reindeer, who was caught by Helsinki police wandering a busy highway a few days ago, enjoyed themselves at the Korkeasaari Zoo on Monday, where the expected DNA test results will help decide where the animal will be sent.

The reindeer were taken to the zoo’s wildlife hospital after police arrested him on Saturday. The animal had had severe stress symptoms, but on Sunday morning, according to the hospital, the reindeer survived the night, was on its feet, and ate.

Authorities caught the animal on Saturday when it was seen wandering in the Hague area of ​​the capital the day before.

The task now is to find out the exact species of animal in order to decide where the reindeer will eventually be moved.

Zoo staff waited for the results of the animal’s DNA test on Monday. If the test shows that it is a rangifer tarandus reindeer, it means that it is domesticated, as is commonly seen in Lapland.

But if it turns out a rangifer tarandus, it is a completely wild animal, a Finnish deer, which usually lives a little further south than its close relatives, says a message published on the zoo ‘s website.

The vet was unsure of exactly what kind of reindeer it was, so according to a zoo spokesman, a DNA test was performed. Mari Lehmonen, which added that the animal now appears to be doing relatively well.

The reindeer were housed in an outdoor yard overseen by zoo staff, he said.

"We keep it as quiet as possible because it has experienced a lot of stress, run into the city, got stuck and brought to a strange place," Lehmonen said he added that it would take a few weeks to find out if the ordeal had caused long-term damage.

Going through severely stressful situations can even lead to the death of such animals, he explained.

When the results of the DNA tests arrive, a decision is made as to where the animal will end up after recovery.

Source: The Nordic Page


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