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Lena-Olenyk Body Condition



The purpose of this project was to compile baseline data on age, body condition, and the parasite and disease status of Rangifer as part of a larger program within the CircumArctic Rangifer Monitoring and Assessment (CARMA) Network. That project is to study herds across the circumpolar region using the Rangifer Health & Body Condition monitoring protocols. Such an approach will ensure that the information is comparable to data collected in subsequent years and in different herds of caribou and reindeer in the circumpolar region.




In spring 2008 we collected 19 adult females, 1 male and 5 calves. Among females, 17 were pregnant. One female had 2 embryos. In general, among embryos we found 11 females and 7 male.


For all animals samples were taken, Kidneys were taken for heavy metal analysis, feces and blood on filter paper (brucellosis and other diseases), helminthes and botflies for species composition, stomach contents and tissues (radioactive cesium and spectral analysis of microelements), hair (microelements), blood and serum.


Genetic work will be conducted on meat samples of adults and embryos kept in ethanol. We have already analyzed bone marrow. Ovaries were collected and stored in ethanol and, along with teeth to determine age, will be analyzed in our lab




The Lena-Olenyk herd is among a number of representative herds that CARMA hopes to continue monitoring. The results will be used to conduct genetic work and cross herd comparisons in relation to global change.




Valery Safronov
Institute of Biological Problems of Cryolithozone
41 Lenin St.,
Yakutsk 677891,
vmsafronov 'at'