Lightning strike kills 323 wild reindeer in Norway


More than 300 reindeer killed by lightning storm in Norway

The animal tragedy is believed to have occurred during a lightning storm Friday.

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Lightning is wild and attractive, but also very unsafe – especially to reindeer, it seems.

The footage was released by the Norwegian Environment Agency, which said that 323 reindeer were killed, including 70 calves.

As Knutsen explained to Henrik Pryser Libell at The Times, something called chronic wasting disease – a contagious neurological disorder related to mad cow disease – had been detected in reindeer in southern Norway back in March.

Kjartan Knutsen, an official from the Norwegian Environment Agency, told the press that the event was “unusual”, adding, “We’ve never seen anything like this on this scale”. Local officials will be revisiting the area to study the animals further, and a decision will be made once test results are available. Employees with the NNI flew out to the hard-to-reach area. As of now it’s not known how the animals died, but after the samples have been analyzed, the NNI will know for certain what happened. “We don’t know if it was one or more lighting strike; that would only be speculation”. As of Monday, the reindeer were still on site. “They seem to have fallen dead on the ground, exactly where they stood”. However, due to the unusually large numbers of bodies, the agency is considering other options.

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