Yes! Reindeer are real and these gorgeous mammals don’t just live at the North Pole. We are counting down 5 days of Christmas science projects for kids with a little bit of Christmas biology, specifically fun reindeer facts. You can learn more about these interesting furry animals as you countdown to Christmas!
FUN FACTS ABOUT REINDEER FOR KIDS
REAL CHRISTMAS REINDEER
Have you ever seen a real Christmas reindeer? We have! Not in the wild of course… But it’s still a magical experience just the same.
We thought we would share some interesting facts about these amazing animals. Exactly, how do they manage to live in some of the coldest parts of the world? Read on to find out more…
FUN FACTS ABOUT REINDEER
Check out some interesting facts about reindeer below. You can even show your kids the beauty of real reindeer with the Reindeer Cam links below.
- In December, you can watch live reindeer cams at ReindeerCam.com (Caledonia, MI).
WHAT DO REINDEER EAT?
- Reindeer’s favorite foods are grass, moss, herbs, and berries.
WHAT TYPE OF ANIMAL ARE REINDEER?
- Reindeer and caribou are the same species but different subspecies. They are closely related to deer, elk, and moose. While there are many subtle differences between reindeer and caribou, reindeer are domesticated, and caribou are wild.
- Domesticated raised reindeer are very friendly animals. You can hand feed them, train them to pull sleds, wagons, and the like!
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Reindeer Ornaments
WHERE DO REINDEER LIVE?
- Reindeer live in very large packs of sometimes thousands in Arctic forests. See our Biomes of the World.
- Packs of reindeer are often hunted by wolves, polar bears, brown bears, and even sharks! Reindeer are really fast and migrate in group of hundreds to thousands, so they are not easy to catch.
Interesting facts about reindeer…
DID YOU KNOW?
- A reindeer’s hooves change with the seasons! In the soft, summer ground the hooves also become softer and more spongy. In the freezing, icy winter, the hooves harden and become sharper so that the edges can cut into the ice. These grooves prevent the reindeer from slipping on the ice and snow.
HOW DO REINDEER STAY WARM?
- Reindeers have a very thick coat made of two layers of fur. The bottom layer is woolly and the top layer is made of long, hollow hairs.
ALSO CHECK OUT: How Do Polar Bears Stay Warm?
REINDEER AS PETS?
- In the late 9th century, Ohthere of Hålogaland sent a letter to King Alfred the Great, in which he stated that he owned 600 domesticated reindeer, of which six were decoys that he used for catching more reindeer to bring into his herd.
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: Rudolph Ornament
DO REINDEER HAVE ANTLERS?
- Unlike regular deer, both male and female reindeer grow antlers. The antlers look velvety because they are composed of a very blood-supply-rich material. Scientists are studying deer antlers to better understand bone cancers. Male and female reindeer shed their antlers in different seasons. These high calciumated lost antlers are then consumed by rodents and other forest creatures.
LABEL THE REINDEER BODY PART
A simple and fun activity for our younger reindeer fans! Label the reindeer body parts is a quick way to learn the simple anatomy of a reindeer.
For older kids, download this Reindeer Facts Word Search using words from the text above!
5 DAYS OF CHRISTMAS FUN
Join in with more simple Christmas science projects…
- Christmas Chemistry Ornaments
- Christmas Around The World Activities
- Christmas Astronomy Activities
- The Smells of Christmas