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The tribes who raise and feed reindeer in Mongolia

Located on the Yamal Peninsula, in the Yamal-Nenets Autonomous Region, Northwest Siberia, Russia, the Nenets tribe include about 40,000 people who live and survive mainly on reindeer breeding. However, the Nenets’ eating habits are still quite strange to outsiders, since as a child they learned how to eat raw meat and drink reindeer blood to keep the body warm.

The place where the Nenets live is still dubbed “the end of the world” – year-round snow-covered year-round with the night temperature can fall below -50 degrees C. However, every year the tribe still has to move. a distance of thousands of kilometers with rudimentary sleighs. Yet the Nenets often have to live in conical tents, temporarily constructed of reindeer leather to keep warm and to cope with this harsh cold climate.

Dubbed the “nomadic tribe” with the life of tomorrow, the people of the Nenets tribe still approach the civilized world when using both generators and televisions. Living in the tribe, women often take on the task of setting up tents, cutting firewood, cooking, sewing, etc. while men only focus on reindeer breeding.

In addition to appearing in every daily activity of the tribe and reindeer, it is also used to make sacrifices for gods; It is even used to exchange and communicate with other businesses.

For thousands of years, the Dukha people live in cold forests with extremely harsh weather in the Mongolian country known to domesticate wild reindeer as pets.
Nomadic lifestyle and reindeer herds have become an indispensable part of their cultural life. In recent years, the Dukha ethnic group has had changes in lifestyle to contribute to protecting nature in addition to preserving the ancestral cultural characteristics.

The nomadic life is always moving and the cold weather makes the Dukha tribe difficult to cultivate or get any other food source, so almost everything depends on the reindeer herd.

They feed them to get milk and meat for food, use them as transport or food exchange with each other.

In addition, they earn extra income by hunting wild animals such as elk, red deer and musk deer in the forest, for skin and meat for sale. However, recently, the hunting of Dukha people has been limited when local authorities issued a ban on hunting wild animals to protect nature.

To compensate for the ban on hunting as well as to support the lives of reindeer farmers, the local government provided them with a monthly stipend. Many families have moved to live in some villages with schools, hospitals and children.

Although life has changed a lot from before, Dukha people still do not forget to maintain their specific cultural identities and circulate them for the next generations.