500 male reindeer were transported by plane last week from the Yamal peninsula to the Evenkian Autonomous District, from where they are making the final part of their journey on foot. As a Rosbalt correspondent was informed at the press office of the Evenkian administration in the village of Tura, where the plane came in, the reindeer then set off on a 300 kilometre trek to the village of Surinda in the south, where the only deer breeding farm in Russia is situated.
The herd is being accompanied by 17 experienced drovers riding local deer and sledges. They are carrying a radio, food and weapons in case of a wolf attack. They are expected to arrive in Surinda by April 20.
Although transportation costs for the deer bought in Yamal have come to almost USD 200 thousand, deer breeders believe this is cheaper than bringing the deer 2000 kilometres on foot. Last year a thousand deer were driven from Yamal to Taimir but only 600 actually arrived, having spent almost a year on the road.
Deer breeders in the Chukotka, Hanti-Mantiisk and Koryak Autonomous Districts have all shown interest in recent events in Evenkia. Governor of Evenkia Boris Zolotaryev has decided to buy a thousand deer every year and bring them to Evenkia by plane only.