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Preconditions for the reindeer husbandry in a progressing climate change

Lundqvist, Henrik


The reindeer husbandry area in Sweden will be affected by climate change on several levels. Autumn, winter and spring will be especially affected as the conditions during these seasons are strongly influenced by temperatures around 0°C, while changes during summer will be considerably less dramatic for reindeer husbandry. On an 80-year perspective, the snow season is expected to be shortened with 1-2 months according to IPCC’s climate scenario B2 (SRES), together with the global climate model ECHAM and SMHI’s regional models RCAO/RCA3. The average winter temperature is expected to increase by 4-6°C and the number of days with frost to decrease by 30-50 days. The precipitation will increase during autumn, winter and spring, mostly as rain. Summers will be 2-2.5°C warmer, but the precipitation scenarios for summers are more geographically varied and the wind scenarios are relatively unsure. Local scenarios for the husbandry are very complex and difficult to foresee as the reindeer husbandry area in Sweden is very heterogeneous and the husbandry differs in the different herding districts, as well as, the climate scenarios are dependent on geography, season and biotope. Therefore, a questionnaire study, including climate scenario maps with weather variables relevant to the reindeer husbandry, was carried out. The questionnaire was given to reindeer herders from all parts of the Swedish reindeer herding area and they were asked to give personal reflections and predictions of the local conditions and how it would affect their local reindeer husbandry and prerequisites. In addition, there was room for the respondents to define local requirements for a continuously sustainable husbandry based on the presumed changes. They were also asked to rank and quantify the importance of different sources of disturbances of today and of the future in relation to climate change. The respondents reported both presumed positive and negative partial and summarised effects of climate change. Any organized local planning efforts do not seem to have been put into practice in the husbandry units. Concerns among the respondents regarding climate change and reindeer husbandry were obvious, but in relation to other threats to reindeer husbandry, such as forest cultivation, wind power plants, tourism and large carnivores, the climate change issues do not seem to be the biggest source of concern for reindeer husbandry in Sweden


Climate poll; climate projection; impact study; range competition; risk assessment

Publicerad i


NOR 2009 - 15th Nordic Conference on Reindeer and Reindeer Husbandry Research

      SLU författare

    • Lundqvist, Henrik

      • Enheten för renskötsel, Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet

    UKÄ forskningsämne

    Miljö- och naturvårdsvetenskap

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