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Researchers have discovered that the more time reindeer spend ruminating, the less time they spend in non-rapid eye movement (non-REM) sleep.

About Reindeer

  • These are one of the largest species of deer behind the caribou.
  • Reindeers are classified as mammals that belong to the family of Cevidae.
  • These are the only mammals known to see ultraviolet light which allows them to spot predators whose white fur is more visible in UV light.
  • A reindeer has the ability to use their nose to warm the air they breathe in before it enters its lungs.
  • Both male and female reindeer grow antlers. However, male reindeer antlers tend to be twice as big in size.
  • Habitat: These are found in polar and Arctic climates.
  • Distribution: They have been spotted in Europe, Asia, and North America.
  • Diet: Classified as herbivores, reindeer live on diets of plants and vegetation.
  • Conservation status
    • IUCN: Vulnerable

Key findings of the research

  • The researchers speculate that this multitasking might help reindeer get enough sleep during the summer months, when food is abundant and reindeer feed almost 24/7.
  • They found that reindeer slept approximately the same amount during winter, summer, and autumn, despite the fact that they were much more active during the summer.

Q1) What is Ultraviolet radiation?

It is that portion of the electromagnetic spectrum extending from the violet, or short-wavelength, end of the visible light range to the X-ray region. Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is undetectable by the human eye, although, when it falls on certain materials, it may cause them to fluoresce—i.e., emit electromagnetic radiation of lower energy, such as visible light.

Source: Like sheep and goats, reindeer too sleep while chewing their cud