Stunning aerial footage shows this unusual defense behaviour.
Meteorologists may have to step aside on this one: There’s a new kind of cyclone in town.
Or, perhaps, a very old kind of cyclone, but caught on camera for the first time. While working on a documentary that recently aired on PBS, “Wild Way of the Vikings,” filmmakers captured stunning footage of a herd of reindeer displaying defensive behaviour in response to a threat, and the behaviour in question bears a startling resemblance to the kind of weather cyclones we see on satellite.
Ever seen a “reindeer cyclone”? The herd runs in a spiral, making it really, really hard for a predator to target a single animal. Filmmakers of the @PBSNature doc “Wild Way of the Vikings” captured amazing aerial views. https://t.co/9WdByCQesm pic.twitter.com/2mCftK7e5h
— Mindy Weisberger (@LaMinda) February 15, 2019
When faced with danger, herds of reindeer stampede in these spinning spirals, making it next to impossible for any predator to target a single animal.
According to LiveScience, this kind of stampede has also been observed in herds kept in corrals, provided there are at least 20 to 25 animals in the group. A study published in 2002 found the animals would beging “milling in response to stressing events” and — oddly enough — the swirling stampede always “rotated leftwards”, or in a counter-clockwise direction.
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