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Finns give reindeer fluorescent antler makeovers

In this picture taken on Feb. 15, 2014 in Rovaniemi, Finland and provided by the Reindeer Herders' Association, a reindeer is seen with fluorescent antlers after a test in which Finnish herders dabbed it with fluorescent paint. Rudolph the reindeer is having a glittering antler makeover _ the latest attempt to halt some of the thousands of road deaths of the roaming caribou in the wilds of Finland. (AP Photo/Anne Ollila, Executive Director of the Reindeer Herders' Association, Finland/Lehtikuva) FINLAND OUT

HELSINKI (AP) -- Rudolph the reindeer is having a glittering antler makeover - the latest attempt to halt some of the thousands of road deaths of the roaming caribou in the wilds of Finland.

Anne Ollila of the Finnish Reindeer Herder's Association says the antlers of 20 reindeer have been painted with various fluorescent dyes to see how the animals react and whether the paints are resistant to the harsh Arctic climate.

If successful, animals with glittering antlers will be free to roam Lapland - a vast, deserted area in northern Finland where herders tend to some 200,000 reindeer.

Ollila says reflectors and reflective tape have proven unsuccessful as reindeer have torn them off - and road signs warning drivers of roaming reindeer often are stolen by tourists as souvenirs.

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boing00001 February 19 2014 at 5:46 PM

are they hunted? if so, wouldn't this also grant the hunter easier visibility?

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4 replies
gudtip February 19 2014 at 8:52 PM

what ever if it helps to save them go for it

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Roberta February 19 2014 at 9:38 PM

They will have a he*l of a time trying to hide from hunters!

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1 reply
Karen Roberta February 19 2014 at 11:59 PM

Probably just as easy to find the killer of a herder's livestock with the "hunter" hauling a glowing carcass.

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only4ebay February 20 2014 at 9:14 AM

I wonder if the bears and wolves in the Finland are getting fat since their prey are easy to see at night.

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temeculapaul February 19 2014 at 10:30 PM

How fun is it for the people who spray-glitter the reindeer? It looks like they rushed that paint job -- and who can blame them?

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sbrown9578 February 20 2014 at 12:37 AM

Awwww, I think it is awesome that a country is taking steps to preserve their wild life.

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2 replies
crotalus sbrown9578 February 20 2014 at 4:57 AM

Uh....they are actually livestock.
"If successful, animals with glittering antlers will be free to roam Lapland - a vast, deserted area in northern Finland where herders tend to some 200,000 reindeer."

I'm sure they are probably sone wild ones around, but they won't be getting their antlers painted.

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Elizabeth sbrown9578 February 20 2014 at 5:07 AM

Since these animals are a large part of the livelihood of the people, one wonders exactly what they do with them. Are they used as we use cattle (for food)?

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bill3fish February 19 2014 at 11:45 PM

Driving through the Yukon one comes upon a sign that says, sheep on the road, slowing down, sure enough around the bend there were a dozen sheep on the road licking the salt or whatever off the road. Surely in Finland those folks are aware that there will be animals on the roadway, signs or no signs. Glowing horns may help but what is that to those speeding down the road? What is the answer, fines, if you hit a animal it will cost you $1000.00 US, horns or no horns. Try it.

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1 reply
Turillo bill3fish February 20 2014 at 3:14 AM

..and of course you must have an answer for the need to have an "animal patrol team" ready to step in in the middle of the night and issue the citations to the morons who probably never stopped after hitting the animals. Good idea but lacks the probabilty of implementation, These people would never report the accidents, and just fix their cars or trucks rather than paying the $1000 fine.

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1 reply
war3saw Turillo February 20 2014 at 6:52 AM

If you hit an animal this large, you will stop what is left of your vehicle. You will have no choice.

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skitzlpk February 20 2014 at 8:53 AM

I'm assuming reindeer shed their rack once a year like most common deer so these researchers better make a definitive conclusion of exactly whatever it is they're after in a short period of time. The landscape will look pretty cool with all those hundreds of thousands of antlers laying around though. It'll be like ground level of the aurora borealis!

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z1379z973 February 20 2014 at 12:40 AM

paint prisoners..they can be caught if they escape

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gingi4me February 19 2014 at 8:50 PM

I hope it works and doesnt disturb the important functions, like mating! If it works it is a wonderful thing both for the carabou and the travelers.

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