Animal Corner — Reindeer

reindeer, christmas, holiday season
“No shiny red light bulb nose here!”

Christmas is almost here, so we figured it would be exciting to learn more about one of the most famous animals of the holiday season — reindeer. They might not have Rudolph noses or pull any sleighs for Santa Claus (that we know of!), but they are still pretty interesting and cute!

In North America, reindeer in the wild are known as caribou. When they are domesticated, they become known as reindeer. Their life expectancy is 15 years out in the wild.

Unlike other deer, both male and female reindeer grow antlers. Similar to human fingerprints, no two reindeer antlers are exactly the same. As their horns grow, they are rubber-like and filled with marrow and blood. Around August, the horns harden, and by winter, they fall off.

Depending on where they live in North America, their fur color varies. Reindeer in the northern part of the continent have whiter fur, whereas those in the southern part possess darker fur, The southern reindeer is also larger than their northern neighbors!

As for their diet, reindeer are herbivores. They eat moss, along with certain trees and grasses. They can weigh as little as 240 pounds and as much as 700 pounds. Reindeer can also run up to 50 miles per hour, which may explain why Santa Claus chose them to lead his sleigh!